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Jason Pierre-Paul misses another practice, says he'll play vs. Chargers

DE Jason Pierre-Paul, who's dealing with a shoulder injury, has gotten off to a slow start. Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants' DE Jason Pierre-Paul missed his second straight day of practice with a sprained shoulder. He says that it’s something that has been bothering him for a while, but shouldn’t keep him out of Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers.

"Of course I'm playing Sunday," he said. "There's no question."

Pierre-Paul played all 64 defensive snaps last week against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He had four tackles and shared a sack with cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. He has 17 tackles, 1.5 sacks and a forced fumble after signing a $62 million deal this offseason.

"I'm not playing my best ball," he conceded while also expressing disgust with how the defense played in Sunday's 25-23 loss to the Bucs and early this season.

It may not get any easier for them against the Chargers. Starting defensive end Olivier Vernon also missed practice Thursday with an ankle injury that forced him to leave early against the Bucs. He originally hurt the ankle the following week against the Philadelphia Eagles, but tried to play through the pain in Tampa.

Vernon’s status for Sunday against the Chargers appears significantly more in doubt.

“We have to prepare if we don’t have them. I’m hopeful we get both but if not both at least one,” defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo said.

Other Giants to miss practice Thursday include running back Paul Perkins (ribs) and starting center Weston Richburg (concussion). It’s starting to look as if they won’t be available on Sunday.

Rookie Wayne Gallman and Orleans Darkwa are likely to see an expanded role at running back if Perkins is sidelined. Brett Jones is likely to start at center in place of Richburg.

It would give the Giants (0-4) their fourth different starting offensive line combination in five games.

The positive news on the injury front Thursday was that cornerback Janoris Jenkins (ankle), Darkwa (back) and wide receiver Brandon Marshall (toe) were full participants in practice.

Star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (finger/ankle) remained limited. He said Wednesday that he wasn’t feeling great but would be fine for this week’s game against the Chargers.