- Associated Press - Friday, December 4, 2015

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - Weston Richburg had no doubts about his job description Friday as the injured New York center moved toward the Giants’ game Sunday against the intra-stadium rival Jets.

It is to play and play effectively, even as he battles the high ankle sprain that sidelined last week against Washington.

It marked the first time in his college and two-year pro career that Richburg missed a game. But now, with a week of limited practice, he has deemed himself ready to go.

And not a moment too soon given the injuries along the offensive line.

“We’ve still got (Saturday) to see where we’re at, but I think I need to be out there,” Richburg said. “It’s my job. Hopefully, I’ll be ready to go. I’m looking forward to being out there again, and I think (coach Tom Coughlin) wants us all out there.”

The offensive line is definitely hurting. Both Richburg and starting right tackle Marshall Newhouse were listed as questionable Friday, the latter with a back sprain that bound him to the sideline for practice Wednesday and Thursday.

Newhouse said he will be a game time decision.

In addition, starting guard Geoff Schwartz’ season ended with a broken leg last week in Washington. Left guard Justin Pugh is probable after missing the last two games with a concussion.

For a team that averages a 28th-ranked 89.4 rushing yards per game which faces the Jets’ run defense that has allowed a league-low 84.4 yards per game, the Giants sorely need to control scrimmage and force the Jets’ blitzers defense to respect the run.

But even Richburg has heard the analysts proclaim the matchup a mismatch.

“I could care less about what anybody says,” Richburg said. “It’s about what we do to make ourselves better. It’s going to be a good challenge. It’s something we’re ready for.”

Between Rashad Jennings, Andre Williams, Shane Vereen, and Orleans Darkwa, the Giants have yet to produce an individual 100-yard rusher this season. Finding one with two players coming off injuries and another carrying questionable status could make that job even harder.

Some juggling might also be in order if Marshall can’t go. Offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo may move Pugh to his old right tackle spot, with 6-foot-4, 334-pound seventh-round rookie Bobby Hart slipping in at Pugh’s left guard spot. John Jerry starts on the other side in place of Schwartz.

“We talk to the players all the time,” McAdoo said. “You can only control what you can control. We’re going to show up and play Sunday, doesn’t matter who has a suit and who doesn’t have a suit, and we’ll go from there.

“We have confidence in the guys that are playing.”

Hart would be the second rookie to start up front, joining first-round left tackle Ereck Flowers. It’s not an ideal situation, but one that could be unavoidable.

“You go with who’s healthy,” McAdoo said. “If two of them happen to be rookies and they happen to be side-by-side, we’ll go play.”

Richburg saw no problems with that.

“As an offensive lineman, you need to be ready to go in wherever you’re needed to go,” Richburg said. “Putting us back in there, I don’t think there’ll be any chemistry problems at all.”

NOTES: Coughlin said some of the Giants have been in touch with Nat Berhe, the injured safety who tweeted Thursday that cousin Isaac Amanios was among the 14 dead Wednesday in the shooting in San Bernardino, California. “It’s a very sad thing,” Coughlin said. “For everyone in our country, it’s a sad, sad situation. You have these circumstances taking place in our country and you ask why and how, and what’s the value of life. And what do these statements all mean?” Coughlin said he missed Berhe when the safety visited the training center Thursday and has not spoken directly to him. … LB Devon Kennard (hamstring/foot) was ruled out after taking limited practice Wednesday and sitting out Thursday. S Brandon Meriweather (knee) and TE Larry Donnell (neck) also are out.

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