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Versatile Weston Richburg happy to concentrate on playing left guard

Giants center Weston Richburg (60) blocks against the

Giants center Weston Richburg (60) blocks against the Buffalo Bills during the Pro Football Hall of Fame Game Sunday, Aug. 3, 2014, in Canton, Ohio. Credit: AP / David Richard

Rookie Weston Richburg probably has played more snaps than any other Giant this preseason, certainly more than anyone else on the offensive line. All in the name of getting him ready for the regular-season opener, when, as it turns out, he likely will be the starting left guard.

Has it worked? Is he ready?

"I don't have a choice," he said.

Indeed. Not after Geoff Schwartz's toe injury catapulted him into the projected starting lineup.

"The preseason was good to me," he continued after his self-deprecating shrug. "It gave me a lot of valuable experience. I'm definitely ready to get into the regular season . . . I'm glad that I got the snaps that I got."

Thursday night's 16-13 win over the Patriots at MetLife Stadium was the first time Richburg, center J.D. Walton and right guard John Jerry played together in a game. The rest of the starters came out after two series, but those three remained in the game for a few more possessions. Richburg played into the third quarter. Jerry played all the way into the fourth.

"We wanted them to get some playing time," Tom Coughlin said.

For Richburg, it wasn't only the snaps that helped but where they were taken. After he shifted between the two guards and center positions for most of the summer, finally stabilizing at one position was a change and helped clarify his responsibilities.

"It's good to have one spot to focus more on this week," he said. "When you're facing an opponent like you're going to face this week [in Lions All-Pro defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh], it's important to work that and continue to work that."

Still, Richburg seemed hesitant to call himself a "starter" even though that's what he seems on track to be. He continues to spend time working on all of his positions.

"Right now I may be slated as one of the first guys to go in at left guard, and that's great," he said. "But I need to be prepared, always working on my craft just in case something happens to another guy so I can be able to go in there and play another position."

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