Thursday Cowboys notebook

LB DeMarcus Ware was held out of practice on Wednesday after suffering a stinger against the Cardinals.

He said it was for precautionary reasons. He will play against the Giants. "I'm fine," Ware said. "I'm 100 percent. It was precautionary. I had a stinger last week, but I'm good."

* WR Miles Austin returned to practice on Wednesday without any setbacks and will play against the Giants Sunday after missing four games with a hamstring injury.

* FB Tony Fiammetta returned to practice Wednesday after missing three games with what is considered an inner ear infection due to vertigo. He said he had no problems in practice and the Cowboys expect him to play on Sunday as the running game has suffered greatly in his absence.

* RT Tyron Smith has a dislocated right ring finger. He suffered the injury against the Dolphins on Thanksgiving Day. He has not missed practice or a game with the injury, although he practiced Wednesday with his right hand heavily wrapped after the finger swelled against the Cardinals last Sunday. "I'll be all right," Smith said.

* LB Martellus Bennett didn't practice Wednesday with a pulled muscle in his rib and will likely be sidelined for Sunday's game against the Giants.

* QB Jon Kitna remains sidelined with a back injury. The Cowboys hope to have him back by the end of the season. He will not play against the Giants.

GAME PLAN: The Cowboys must get back to forcing the run and maintaining a balanced offense to set up their passing game. They got away from the run last week against the Cardinals and paid for it because they were unable to keep the defense honest and the pass rush off of quarterback Tony Romo. Defensively, the Cowboys must stop the run and then pressure quarterback Eli Manning into mistakes. Linebacker DeMarcus Ware has 10 career sacks against the Giants.

MATCHUPS TO WATCH: Giants QB Eli Manning vs. Cowboys secondary — The secondary has been victimized by the likes of Rex Grossman, Matt Moore and Kevin Kolb the last few weeks. Now they get to face the best quarterback they have seen since a 34-7 loss to the Eagles when they were gashed by Michael Vick. Manning is the league's fifth-ranked passer. He is fourth in yards. The Cowboys must find a way to contain Manning and his plethora of receivers in Mario Manningham, Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz.

Cowboys WRs Dez Bryant, Miles Austin and Laurent Robinson vs. Giants secondary — The Giants have the league's 29th-ranked secondary, giving up 260 passing yards per game. This an area the Cowboys must exploit. And they should be able to with the return of Miles Austin, who has been out the past four games, to go along with Dez Bryant, Laurent Robinson and tight end Jason Witten. Austin's deep speed should open things up for Witten, who has been limited by bracket coverage in recent weeks.

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