New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz is continuing to call the calf injury that has sidelined him for about three weeks now "just a little setback." Still, Cruz admitted to reporters on Monday that not only has he not been cleared for practice, he has not yet been allowed to do so much as jog.
"I haven't been able to jog. Not that I haven't been able to, but they don't want me to right now. They just want me to sit down and let it heal, let it repair itself and things like that," Cruz said. "I've just been working out -- lower body one leg or whatever the case may be, upper body. Just doing all the things I can to stay in shape.
"I think we're just being careful, cautious with it. Especially, you don't want to come out here, and calfs are tricky. Once they feel healed and once they feel okay, you can go out here and mess it up again. So you want to make sure that it's fully healed and fully recovered once you step back out there on the field."
Cruz still hopes to be ready for the Sept. 13 season-opener against the Dallas Cowboys.
"Nothing has been set in stone, in terms of playing that first week or not playing that first week," Cruz said. "I'm still excited for Week 1 -- that's still the goal, that's still the plan, in my opinion.
"I think I'll be ready to go. Hopefully come Week 1, I'm able to get on the practice field and run around a little bit. I know how Coach Coughlin loves his guys to practice—if you don't practice, you don't play. So I want to be out here for practice come Week 1."
Despite Cruz's optimism this now has to be considered a major setback in his return from last season's devastating torn patellar tendon. Several weeks of missed practice time is no way to ensure that his knee is right for pounding of playing in the NFL, nor is it any way gain any rhythm with quarterback Eli Manning.
Remember that safety Nat Berhe had a calf injury way back in OTAs that ended up requiring surgery. Cruz' status for Week 1 has to be in doubt at this point, no matter what he says. Obviously, if you can't run you can't play.