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New York debuts stadium

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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. » Mark Sanchez was sharp, while Eli Manning needed stitches.

Manning was forced to leave the New York Giants’ 31-16 victory over the Jets after suffering a bloody, 3-inch gash to the left side of his head early in the second quarter last night.

The Giants quarterback needed 12 stitches to close the cut, and showed no sign of concussion after being hurt with 10:45 left in the first half.

Sanchez led the Jets on three scoring drives, overcoming an interception on his first pass, while playing the entire first half in the first football game played at the New Meadowlands Stadium.

The teams traditionally meet in the third game of the preseason, but both wanted to be part of the unveiling of their new $1.6 billion, 82,500-seat home.

In NFL news yesterday:

» The San Francisco 49ers signed free-agent running back Brian Westbrook to a one-year deal with a reported $1.25 million guaranteed.

The Niners had a void to fill after backup Glen Coffee abruptly announced he was leaving football after one NFL season.

Westbrook led the NFL with 2,104 yards from scrimmage in 2007, but missed eight games last season with a two concussions and an ankle injury while scoring only two touchdowns.

» The 49ers traded defensive lineman Kentwan Balmer to the Seattle Seahawks after a mysterious absence from the team over the past week.

The Seahawks will send an undisclosed 2011 draft pick to the Niners.

» Detroit Lions linebacker Jordon Dizon will miss the season with a knee injury.

The Waimea High graduate, a versatile backup, injured his left knee during Saturday’s exhibition loss at Pittsburgh, a game he started in place of DeAndre Levy.

"That was big," linebacker Julian Peterson said. "He was one of those guys that could fill any spot on the field for us. He could play safety even, if we were short on safeties."

» The Arizona Cardinals are promising to proceed with all caution in their treatment of Larry Fitzgerald’s sprained right knee.

That could mean the four-time Pro Bowl receiver won’t play again this preseason.

Coach Ken Whisenhunt said that while the team will take a conservative approach, he fully expects Fitzgerald to be back for the season opener at St. Louis.

» Former Buffalo Bills linebacker Aaron Schobel is retiring, saying he lost his hunger for playing last year.

The Bills released Schobel on Aug. 4 after nine seasons. Schobel was a two-time Pro Bowl selection and his 78 career sacks rank second in Buffalo history behind Hall of Famer Bruce Smith.

» Dallas Cowboys right tackle Marc Colombo had five loose particles removed from his right knee, a clean-up job that could sideline him for the rest of the preseason.

Colombo had at least some of the damage "probably for the last couple of years," owner Jerry Jones said. They became enough of a problem Sunday that he left the practice field on a cart.

» The Minnesota Vikings welcomed Percy Harvin back to practice.

Last year’s offensive rookie of the year was on the field for the first time in more than two weeks. Harvin’s grandmother died two days into training camp, and then his migraine headaches flared up.

 

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