Kiwanuka: Probably the biggest injury news of the week was Coughlin’s pronouncement on Monday that Kiwanuka’s ankle injury would linger for the rest of the season.

“Let’s face it – I don’t know that those things ever get cleared up,” he said.

But ‘Nuke (so much of a cooler nickname than Kiwi) had a different take: He admitted that his ankle was still bothering him, but said, “It shouldn’t be all season long.  It’ll probably be a couple more weeks.  But if I can get it under control over the bye week, it should just be an afterthought.”

That’s good, but apparently, ‘Nuke is still battling the effects of his broken fibula from last year.

“After having surgery last year, it’s still going to take some time before it doesn’t swell up after a game,” he said.  “With the recent injury, yeah, it’s going to take some time.  But we have a bye week, so I’m looking forward to getting off it, and hopefully when I get back I shouldn’t have any issues with it.”

This was all a little confusing to me.  Like, how long will the ankle injury take, and how long will the fibula take?  Are their effects related?  And what do we make of the fact that ‘Nuke was completely shut down by Orlando Pace last week?  Is it attributable to ‘Nuke being hobbled, or is it attributable to Orlando Pace being Orlando Pace? 

Let’s just hope he has a good game Sunday and puts our minds at ease.

R.W: ‘Dubs hasn’t practiced all week because he’s still bothered by a calf injury.  But even if he were healthy, Coughlin said on Monday that Hixon has earned the punt returning duties.  R.W. McQuarters, meet Wally Pipp.  (Imagine if that encounter actually occured…)

Two thoughts on this: 1) It’s great that Hixon is returning punts – this moment couldn’t have came too soon.  But why isn’t he returning kicks as well?  For as much as I want to see Ahmad on the field, his kick returns have been pretty bad this year.  Come on, Tom.

And 2) Barring injury, this basically means that R.W. has no role on this team – you have to think Dockery will remain the nickelback.  This closes the book on what has been a pretty eventful Giants career.  Think of the big plays, good and bad, in which R.W. was involved in last year’s playoffs alone:   

The game-clinching pick against Tampa Bay; the huge punt return against Dallas to set up our go-ahead touchdown; the game-clinching pick against Dallas; the interception against Green Bay that he fumbled back to the Packers; and the fumbled punt return against Green Bay that was kicked around and finally recovered by Hixon.

But that’s R-Dubs for you.  Ever since the guy entered the league in the mid-nineties with that awesome name and those even awesomer dreads – which were original back then – he was never good, but he was always noticed. 

Tynes: He was limited in practice on Thursday, so he’ll probably be inactive at least through this Sunday.  The best guess is that he’ll be back the week after the bye.  Oh, and there’s no chance we get rid of Tynes in favor of Carney.  As many writers have pointed out, Coughlin hates carrying an extra kicker on the roster, so if we had any plans to cut Tynes, we would have done so already.  Plus, we just signed the guy to a 5-year, $7 million contract, though I’m not sure how much of that was guaranteed. 

Johnson: Johnson suffered a stinger against the Rams, but was back to practicing in full on Wednesday.  He played well against the Rams, and although Kenny Phillips is obviously breathing down his neck for the starting job, Johnson should still be a solid contributor to this team for the next few years.

Terrell Thomas: The rookie second rounder is back practicing after a preseason hamstring injury.