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Friday, November 4, 2011
JPP would be 'big loss' for line

By Ian Begley

Huge loss. Big loss. Tough to handle.

Phrases like that were being thrown in the Giants' locker room on Friday. The subject? Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, who may miss Sunday's game due to a concussion.

Pierre-Paul was involved in a helmet-to-helmet collision with a teammate in practice on Thursday. The Giants initially called it a neck injury. But when Pierre-Paul began began suffering headaches, they sent him for a concussion exam.

"I didn't think anything of it then all of a sudden he was off to the side and he didn’t feel real good, so they shut him right down," Tom Coughlin said.

Pierre-Paul is listed as questionable for Sunday. If he makes the trip to New England, he will most likely play.

If not, the Giants' vaunted pass rush will take a hit. The team leads the league with 26 sacks and Pierre-Paul has 8.5 of them.

Perry Fewell's 'D' still has Osi Umenyiora, Justin Tuck, Mathias Kiwanuka and Dave Tollefson to rush Tom Brady.

But Pierre-Paul brings a combination of size and speed that is difficult to replace.

"Honestly that would be a big loss. He's a big part of our team," Umenyiora said. "We’re just gong to have to keep on rolling, next man up."

With Pierre-Paul out, Kiwanuka would likely play more on the line. In past games, he has shifted back to linebacker.

The defensive line has dealt with the extended absence of Tuck (four games) and Umenyiora (three games).

"If somebody's not available, the next man has to step up," defensive tackle Chris Canty said. "We don't make any excuses. Nobody's going to feel sorry for us."