Center Weston Richburg wanted to return and play for the Giants this season, but said the team did not want him to do so.
Richburg, placed on injured reserve Nov. 4 with a concussion, said he was “cleared medically by the specialist like three or four weeks ago,’’ but the decision was made to sit him for the remainder of the season. Richburg started the first four games, was inactive for the next three and spent the remainder of the season on IR.
“I wanted to play, but that’s just the way it turned out this year,’’ Richburg said. “I didn’t want to go [on IR]. I thought I was turning the corner, about to be ready to go and then that happened. It’s hard to be away when they’re going through the things that they went through. But that’s how this thing turned out.’’
Brett Jones replaced Richburg and played well. Richburg, a second-round pick in 2014, is headed to free agency.
“Anybody who’s been here, I don’t think they want to go anywhere else,’’ Richburg said. “This is a great organization. It’s obviously a place I want to be.’’
Another soon-to-be free agent offensive lineman, Justin Pugh, said he believes he will be a hot commodity on the open market.
“Yeah, I think so,’’ he said.
Pugh missed the final seven games with a back injury and played in just eight games this season.
“I went to see the No. 1 back specialist in the world out in California, and he told me everything will be all right,’’ Pugh said. “I have no reservations about it. I’ll be good to go in a month.’’
LB Mark Herzlich, one of the longest-tenured Giants players, is a free agent and wants to return for a seventh year. He spent the entire season on injured reserve with a neck issue he said was healed months ago.
“Neck’s fine, cleared to play. My plan next year is to play. Hopefully it’s here, would love to stay,’’ Herzlich said.
Interim head coach Steve Spagnuolo said he was not aware of the clause in RB Orleans Darkwa’s contract that allowed him to cash in late in an 18-10 victory Sunday over the Redskins. Darkwa made an extra $200,000 for reaching 750 rushing yards this season. He finished with 751 yards after rushing for 154 yards on the Redskins.
Spagnuolo insisted Bobby Hart was waived Saturday because of an ankle injury, though sources told The Post the right tackle was cut because of a poor attitude during the week, showing little interest in playing in the final game.
“He wasn’t able to play,’’ Spagnuolo said. “He was hurt. He had an ankle. He was not going to play in the game and that was kind of the reason.’’
The Giants’ 2018 home opponents: Saints, Buccaneers, Jaguars, Titans, Bears, Cowboys, Redskins and Eagles. Their 2018 road opponents: Falcons, Panthers, Texans, Colts, 49ers, Cowboys, Redskins and Eagles.