The Giants might have a big receiver on the way to upgrade their offense after the trade deadline after all.
Kenny Golladay said his injured right knee feels “good,” and he’s working to return Sunday against the Houston Texans after missing four straight games.
“That’s what I’m pushing for,” Golladay said Wednesday, after a second straight limited practice.
Golladay has only two catches for 22 yards in four games played this season. He has not caught a touchdown pass yet in 18 games with the team the past two years.
But he is carrying a $21.15 million salary cap hit this season, plus a $4.5 million roster bonus due in March.
GM Joe Schoen wasn’t going to find a trade partner for that contract. So after Schoen made no acquisitions at the deadline and shipped Kadarius Toney to Kansas City, the hope is Golladay can give the Giants value on the field.
“That’s my main goal: to hit the ground running,” Golladay said.
The Giants offense gained a season-low 225 yards in their 27-13 loss at Seattle in Week 8 before the bye week. That included only 176 passing yards for Daniel Jones.
Golladay said he doesn’t care how he’s utilized by coach Brian Daboll.
“I’m ready for whatever,” he said. “It really don’t matter.”
He just wants to play and contribute. That’s what bothered him about his Week 2 benching while healthy against Carolina. That’s why he’s eager to be a big part of this run.
“I’m really not trying to prove nothing to no coaches,” Golladay said. “Really I’m out here playing for my guys, these people in the locker room. Of course I got to show on the practice field to the coaches, but at the exact same time, I’m playing for the guys in this locker room, period.”
Giants defensive coordinator Wink Martindale said Texans rookie running back Dameon Pierce “might be the angriest runner in the league.”
“I don’t know who said something to him or did something to him to make him so angry,” Martindale said with a smirk. “He is — I’ll give you my comparisons again, old, old school — Earl Campbell, Jamal Lewis. He’s one of those big power backs that has great balance. Runs mad every time he touches it.”
Meanwhile, offensive coordinator Mike Kafka said “everyone,” both coaches and players, contributed to their subpar performance in Seattle prior to the bye week.
“We went back and looked at all the little fundamental things, the techniques, those things showed up,” he said. “We look at it and evaluate it as a play caller. Did I put my guys in the right spot in that situation? There’s things that showed up that way, as well.”
Special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey said punt returner Richie James’ first fumble against the Seahawks was due to James wearing long “cotton sleeves.”
“Probably wasn’t the best decision, and that’s probably on me more than anything else to tell him to take them off,” McGaughey said. “It was my fault. I should’ve told him to take it off. I’m normally all over that.”
McGaughey would not disclose his punt returner’s status for Sunday’s game. Corner Darnay Holmes replaced James in Seattle after his injury and caught punts first in Tuesday’s practice. But corner Adoree Jackson was fielding them as the primary Wednesday.
Plus, when asked how Holmes had risen to the top of the return list, McGaughey said: “Who said he was at the top?”
GIANTS INJURY REPORT
Right tackle Evan Neal (knee) and tight end Daniel Bellinger (eye) did not practice Wednesday. Golladay (knee), OLB Oshane Ximines (quad) and CB Cor’Dale Flott (calf) were limited. WR James (concussion) was a full participant as he nears clearing the NFL’s concussion protocol … Daboll said it is “doubtful” CB Aaron Robinson (knee, injured reserve) will play again this season.
TEXANS INJURY REPORT
WR Brandin Cooks (wrist), LB Neville Hewitt (hamstring) and DL Jerry Hughes (rest) did not participate. DL Maliek Collins (chest), WR Nico Collins (groin), WR Phillip Dorsett (ankle), DL Jaleel Johnson (illness), RB Pierce (chest/shoulder) and LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin (groin) were limited. OL Justin McCray (concussion) was a full participant.