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Ahmad Bradshaw: 'We feel like we can spark New York'

There is a raging debate in my home of New York this week about if it makes sense to run the New York Marathon on Sunday as if Superstorm Sandy never happened.

It's a little surprising, then, that no one has batted an eye over the New York Giants playing the Pittsburgh Steelers in New Jersey on the same day, so close to where the storm's worst devastation hit.

Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw sees the game as an opportunity.

"We feel like we can spark New York," Bradshaw said, via The Star-Ledger. "Just what we do, what we've done. I think we can also help everybody in New York and New Jersey that's going through this."

I don't have a strong opinion on the matter. It's a complicated and not particularly important issue in the scheme of things. People raging about if a marathon runs is the real world equivalent of us NFL media types constantly talking about Tim Tebow. It's a side dish that sells.

It feels a little post-apocalyptic right now in lower Manhattan, still in darkness after four days. Nerves are frayed. It is so much worse in New Jersey, Long Island and Staten Island, where people are just worried about survival and the long process of rebuilding.

Giants coach Tom Coughlin hopes to provide an uplift to some of the people in the area.

"People are devastated and you think, 'Where do you start?' A foot of sand in your living room, water up to the top of your steps ... If we can provide something like that (an uplift), yes," Coughlin said, via the New York Daily News. "But do we fully comprehend what's happened? I know I don't. I see the mess and that's the thing I see is that hasn't even started to get cleaned up."

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Sports has a way of bringing people together in times like this. Games provide a great service just by being distraction. It's trite, but it's true. I remember the 2005 New Orleans Saints -- the vagabond group led by Jim Haslett and Joe Horn -- as one of the most inspiring teams of my lifetime.

"I think a lot of people will kind of be lingering on what we do on Sunday, kind of get their minds off the effects of Sandy," Giants defensive end Justin Tuck told Bob Glauber of Newsday. "Hopefully we can oblige."

Sunday's game will be an emotional one for many in the area after a very long week. Many of those hardest hit by the storm won't be able to watch.

We suspect the fans who are able to watch will be very glad the game is played. 

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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