Adoree' Jackson
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants have their first playoff game in six years this Sunday against the Vikings. And they have a pretty significant question mark heading into it.

It’s unclear if cornerback Adoree’ Jackson will play. He missed the final seven regular-season games with a knee injury. Jackson was limited in Wednesday’s practice and was coy about his availability against Minnesota.

But take this from defensive coordinator Wink Martindale as an encouraging sign?

The Giants would absolutely benefit from getting their secondary back to full strength after an injury-ridden second half of the year. Because while it’s the biggest matchup in years for the organization, the Giants are also going up against arguably the NFL’s top wide receiver in Minnesota’s Justin Jefferson. The third-year player led the league in receptions (128) and receiving yards (1,809) and was a huge reason why the Vikings were the sixth-ranked passing offense and the NFC North champions.

In the last meeting between these two teams, a Christmas Eve thriller in which the Vikings beat the Giants on a 61-yard game-winning field goal, Jefferson caught 12 balls for 133 yards and a touchdown. Neither Jackson nor safety Xavier McKinney (who missed seven games with a hand injury) played in that game, and quarterback Kirk Cousins took advantage.

If the Giants want to have any success limiting the effectiveness of Jefferson to halt Minnesota’s passing attack, they’ll need to return Jackson to the gridiron. How this game fares could depend on his status for the matchup.

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Ryan Honey is a staff writer and host of the Wide Right Podcast.