Sore Achilles prevents Giants DE Tuck from practicing

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants defensive end Justin Tuck missed the end of practice Wednesday because of a sore Achilles' tendon.

The defensive captain didn't leave the field after he stopped working out, and he downplayed the injury during a radio interview about an hour later.

"Definitely not hurt," Tuck said in an interview with WFAN-AM, which was broadcasting live from practice. "I just wanted to take a couple of plays off."

Tuck had 99 tackles and 11.5 sacks last season, sharing the team lead in the latter with fellow defensive end Osi Umenyiora. The six-year veteran also had five forced fumbles and five recoveries.

With Tuck out, backup Dave Tollefson worked with the first team.

The Giants also announced that backup quarterback Sage Rosenfels has been hospitalized at Hackensack University Medical Center with strep throat. He hasn't practiced this week.

Linebacker Michael Boley also is out with a sore back, and wide receiver Darius Reynaud is sidelined with a hamstring injury.

Kicker Lawrence Tynes, who was injured during Saturday night's loss to the Carolina Panthers in the preseason opener, also didn't practice. Rhys Lloyd, the kickoff specialist who was signed Tuesday, handled kicking duties Wednesday. He didn't attempt a kickoff, but he hit all seven of his field-goal attempts, and probably will play Monday against the Chicago Bears.

Lloyd has been in the NFL for four years, but he has never attempted a field goal in a regular-season game. He isn't sure if his Giants stay will blossom into a kicking competition with Tynes.

"Lawrence and I are good friends," Lloyd said. "Like I said, I honestly don't know what my role here is, whether it's until the end of this week or whether it's the end of preseason or what. I'm literally here just to kick balls in practice, and if he gets healthy and it turns into a competition, then that's the way it goes. But as of right now, I'm just kind of existing."

Lloyd spent a couple of seasons with the Panthers because of his ability to kick the ball out of the end zone on kickoffs. The Giants could use that because their coverage teams haven't been good.

"I've kind of got the title of kickoff specialist," Lloyd said. "I don't know where that came from. I like to think of it as a driving-range pro where I just take out a driver and just hit it as far as I can and it doesn't matter where it goes."

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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