Nicks didn't appear on the injury report Wednesday but missed practice Thursday. He had swelling in the same knee earlier this season and missed three games because of the swelling, as well as issues with his surgically repaired right foot.
Nicks did take part in a limited fashion in Friday's practice, which Giants coach Tom Coughlin hopes is a positive sign for Nicks' chances of playing Sunday.
Nicks' productivity has taken a hit; he has just 46 catches for 585 yards and two touchdowns.
In his career, Nicks has caught at least six touchdowns every season, and he topped 1,000 yards the past two seasons. He caught five passes for 43 yards against Washington, although he was targeted frequently.
Phillips missed six games with a sprained MCL before returning Nov. 25 against Green Bay. He aggravated the knee injury during that game and ended up playing just 20 of the team's 54 defensive snaps Monday against Washington. Phillips did not practice at all this week, and if he is out, the team would miss him in their three-safety look.
The safety also had been doubtful for Monday's game against the Redskins, but ultimately played.
"We'll see," Coughlin said about Phillips. "He hasn't been able to do a whole lot this week."
Running back Ahmad Bradshaw (foot) is probable and practiced Friday as part of his once-a-week schedule. The running back has missed only one game this season, and that was because of a neck injury. Bradshaw is coming off just his third 100-yard rushing game of the season.
The Giants could get a boost at linebacker, as Jacquian Williams (knee) is probable for the game. Williams will have to be cleared by the team's medical and coaching staff before he can return.
Williams, the team's speediest linebacker, has missed the past six games because of a PCL injury. He practiced all week, including a full practice Friday, and the team could use him against New Orleans' dynamic tight end, Jimmy Graham. Williams said he did more at practice this week than he has since he suffered the injury in mid-October.
"It's time," Williams said. "Like I said, I practiced better. My team can use me. I'm ready. I'm just waiting on the release from the medical staff and the coaches."
He added: "It's been a while so I'm very anxious. I'm ready."
Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (back), wide receiver Domenik Hixon (ankle), linebacker Chase Blackburn (ankle), center David Baas (shoulder) and linebacker Michael Boley (shoulder) are all probable. Safety Tyler Sash (hamstring) and tight end Travis Beckum (knee) have been ruled out.
Matt Ehalt is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.