Giants' Rich Seubert to have surgery
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- For the second time in his nine-year career, New York Giants offensive lineman Rich Seubert will undergo surgery to repair a major injury to his right leg. But Seubert, the man Giants general manager Jerry Reese on Monday called "the MVP of our team," vowed that the latest injury will not affect his status for next season or beyond.
"I'm not going to let an injury end my career," Seubert said. "I love playing football. This is the best I've felt in a few years. To make it to the end and then have this happen sucks."
Seubert will have surgery at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan to repair a right knee injury he suffered on Sunday in Washington.
Beyond being on crutches for "a couple of weeks," Seubert did not provide a timetable for his recovery but anticipated that he'd be at the Giants' training facility for most of the offseason to rehabilitate the injury.
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Seubert, 31, suffered the injury when his cleat got caught in the field while being "bull-rushed" by a Redskins defender in the first quarter of the Giants' 17-14 win at Washington on Sunday. He was carted off the field with his right leg stabilized.
"I went back to plant and stop it and my cleat got stuck. I couldn't get my cleat out of the ground. It could have happened any play," said Seubert, who was moving around the locker room on crutches with his right leg in a brace on Monday.
It's the second major injury to his right leg. Seubert, the longest tenured Giant, also broke his right leg in the middle of the 2003 season. He missed the rest of that season and all of 2004. Seubert also played the entire 2009 season with a shoulder injury. He underwent surgery last January to repair the injury. He said that the right knee injury he suffered on Sunday is not as severe as his previous right leg ailment.
"It's not like [the 2003 injury in which] I shattered my leg and I need seven surgeries to put it back together," Seubert said. "[Dr. Russell Warren, a surgeon at the Hospital of Special Surgery] told me he's 100 percent sure that he can fix it, so I'm happy."
Giants center Shaun O'Hara also said on Monday that he will meet with doctors this week and expects to have surgery to "clean out" his injured left Achilles. He doesn't anticipate needing surgery to repair his injured ankle. O'Hara missed 10 games due to injuries to his left ankle, left Achilles and a sprained right Lisfranc this season.
"I might [have surgery]," O'Hara said. "Like I said, I don't know. I gotta see doctors today and tomorrow and figure out a course of action. But I think mostly I'll have to do something to clean it out and just get it right. And once I do that, I'll be ready to go for next year."
Seubert filled in for O'Hara for seven of those games and was an integral part of a Giants offensive line that was forced into seven different starting combinations due to injury.
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With Seubert at center, the Giants ran for 410 yards in a two-week stretch in wins over the Redskins and Vikings. They ran for an average of 151 yards on the ground in the six previous games he started at center.
His impact on the running game was apparent in the regular-season finale as well. The Giants ran for 41 yards on three carries with Seubert at center; they gained just 41 yards on 29 carries the rest of the day with Kevin Boothe in his place.
"Everybody knows what he's been through and what it means," coach Tom Coughlin said on Sunday night. "Talk about heart and soul in the way he played this year and the things he was able to accomplish for our team. We lose our center and this guy goes in there and just does a super job."
Giants wide receiver Hakeem Nicks also revealed on Monday that the broken toe that held him out of Sunday's win is the same toe that he had operated on in the offseason.
"It wasn't bad," Nicks said. "It was like a slight fracture. But it was the same toe -- the big toe on my left foot -- I'd been operated on in the offseason. So I have to sit down for a while."
Nicks added that the injury would've kept him out of this weekend's wild-card round of the playoffs had the Giants advanced that far. It will not require surgery.
"I probably would've been able to play the week after," said Nicks, who emerged to establish career-highs in receptions (79), yards (1,052) and touchdowns (11) in his sophomore campaign.
Nicks put up those impressive statistics in just 13 games, although he was upset at how he and his team's season ended.
"It left a bit of a bitter taste," said Nicks, who finished tied for 13th in the NFL with six drops. "We definitely wanted to be in the playoffs. My season didn't end up how I wanted it to be personally, but you just look at the positives and move forward from it."
Osi Umenyiora added to the Giants' offseason injury woes, saying he will need hip surgery perhaps as early as this week.
The Giants defensive end has been bothered by a hip injury the entire season.
Umenyiora told WFAN radio on Monday night that he may undergo the surgery in either New York or in Colorado, where he visited with a hip specialist back during the summer prior to training camp.
Ian Begley is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com. ESPNNewYork.com's Mike Mazzeo contributed to this story.