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Giants vs. Cowboys - Pugh is inactive, Sterling Shepard is active

Eli Manning will be without his right tackle, but he will get his best (healthy) receiver back

NFL: New York Giants at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The first game of the Steve Spagnuolo Era of the New York Giants starts off with the team missing at least two important players

Most notably, the offensive line will once again be without Justin Pugh. The Giants had been targeting this week against the Dallas Cowboys for Pugh’s return. However, he hit a setback in his return from a back injury. The Giants could have used him to block DeMarcus Lawrence, who has become one of the league’s top pass rushers this season. Bobby Hart will start in his place, though Chad Wheeler has cleared the concussion protocol.

Also, in a familiar refrain, the defense will be without middle linebacker B.J. Goodson. Goodson returned last week only to suffer another ankle injury. The Giants could have used Goodson’s acumen and command of the defense with Jonathan Casillas being placed on the IR this week. The defense will also be without CB Eli Apple for the fourth week in a row after he was a late add to the injury report last week with a hip injury.

Eli Manning catches a break in his return to the starting lineup as Sterling Shepard is active, after dealing with a hamstring injury this week. Interestingly, Tavarres King is a healthy scratch this week, while Darius Powe — just promoted from the practice squad — will get the start.

Full Inactives List:

QB Davis Webb,

WR Tavarres King

WR Travis Rudolph,

CB Eli Apple

OL Justin Pugh

LB B.J. Goodson

DT Khyrie Thornton