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 EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -Seven-time Pro Bowl defensive end Michael Strahan has decided to end his holdout and return for a 15th NFL season with the New York Giants.
``He's coming back because he wants to keep playing,'' his agent, Tony Agnone, told the New York Daily News.
The decision came a day before the Giants had to cut their roster to the 53-man limit and a little more than a week before the season opener at Dallas.
The 35-year-old Strahan missed 36 days of training camp and amassed a fine of $514,368.
Agnone told the Daily News that the Giants agreed to reduce the fine total after Strahan decided to play, but the agent added he still will pay a big fine.
Giants spokesman Pat Hanlon said the team was not aware that Strahan had decided to play, and general manager Jerry Reese did not return an e-mail seeking comment.
Agnone did not return e-mails or calls to his cell phone from The Associated Press.
The announcement of Strahan's decision came just hours after a frustrated coach Tom Coughlin said he was taking the approach that Strahan would not play this season.
Coughlin seemed upset that the NFL's active leader in sacks (132 1/2) was still mulling whether he would play more than five weeks after training camp opened. He also was annoyed that Strahan's absence was going to make it tough to make final roster decisions and to pick a practice squad.
Third-year-man Justin Tuck has started at left end in the preseason, and he has played well.
Strahan, who is to make $4 million this season, had mulled retirement while considering a career in television, insisting the decision had nothing to do with money.
He insisted in a letter to Giants fans last month that the holdout had nothing to do with his recent divorce. A judge awarded his former wife $15.3 million. He has paid half that amount, and an appellate court granted him a temporary stay while it considers whether the award was too much.
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