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Pugh will make belated return to Giants' offensive line

Justin Pugh of the Giants speaks to the

Justin Pugh of the Giants speaks to the media before practice during training camp at Quest Diagnostics Training Center on July 22, 2013 in East Rutherford, N.J. Photo Credit: Mike Stobe

Justin Pugh said he was very close to playing on Sunday against the Jaguars, but ultimately his quad injury was not 100 percent healed and he didn't want to hurt the team by starting the game and then leaving it with an aggravation. That happened in the 49ers game a few weeks ago.

That turned out to be a costly decision because the Giants lost the two players who were playing in place of Pugh at tackle to injuries. Starter Geoff Schwartz injured his ankle in the first quarter and his replacement, James Brewer, left in the second half with a concussion.

"It was like the worst-case scenario that could have happened, that Geoff went down right away and James Brewer went down," Pugh said on Wednesday. "In retrospect you wish I could have been suited up and ready to go just in case of an emergency like that."

Pugh said it was difficult to watch the loss from the sideline, especially when he could have been used. The Giants wound up sliding guard John Jerry to right tackle and putting Dallas Reynolds in at guard.

"It's definitely tough feeling like you can contribute, feeling like you can go out there, and not being able to go out there," he said. "My job was to get healthy and get back to 100 percent so I can get back out there and help this team."

He'll do that on Sunday.

"No doubt, I'm playing this week," he said.

It will mean that, despite all the injuries, the comings and goings of starters, and the shuffling that took place in recent weeks, the Giants will be back to the same five offensive line starters they had for the first nine games of the season.

Whether that's a good thing or not is up for discussion.


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