EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -Center Shaun O'Hara and cornerback Sam Madison were not cleared to play in the NFC wild-card game, and coach Tom Coughlin is uncertain whether the starters will be available for the divisional round against the Dallas Cowboys.
``Both very much wanted to play, but the medical people said that wouldn't be the case,'' Coughlin said Monday.
O'Hara sprained his left knee in the regular-season finale against New England, while Madison aggravated a pulled muscle in his stomach.
Starting weakside linebacker Kawika Mitchell, who was also hurt against the Patriots, did not aggravate his sprained left knee playing in a limited basis in the Giants' 24-14 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday.
Backup defensive tackle and snapper Jay Alford sprained a knee Sunday, but Coughlin hopes to have him back at practice on Wednesday.
Grey Ruegamer and Corey Webster both played well in replacing O'Hara and Madison, respectively.
``Grey played very well, played well enough for us to win the game and we had no issues with center-quarterback exchange,'' Coughlin said of Ruegamer, who was making his first start of the season. ``All the calls were made properly, so I was really impressed by the veteran professionalism that Grey demonstrated not only through the week but into the game.''
Webster had an interception, recovered a fumble on the opening kickoff of the second half and limited Joey Galloway, the Bucs' 1,000-yard receiver, to one catch for 9 yards.
``He shut things down over there,'' safety Gibril Wilson said of Webster, who was making his first start since the third game of the season. ``He played extremely well. I've been with Corey for three years now, and this is the best I've seen him. He's confident. It's just a wonderful thing to see.''
Starting left tackle David Diehl left the game late in the third quarter after cramping in the 70-plus degree heat in Tampa, Fla.
Coughlin said that Diehl was fine after the game and that Guy Whimper did a good job replacing him for 12 plays on a 15-play, 92-yard touchdown drive that sealed the game.
``That was excellent experience for him and to have him get involved more and more was a good thing obviously,'' Coughlin said.

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