Eli Manning
Cruz declares himself 100 percent, expects to play in next preseason game
Eli Manning

Cruz declares himself 100 percent, expects to play in next preseason game

Published Aug. 18, 2015 12:52 a.m. ET

After being on a snap count for the first couple of weeks of training camp, New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz said he is free of limitations going forward. In a radio interview Monday, Cruz said he feels 100 percent healthy and he plans to practice and play in the Giants' upcoming preseason home opener against the Jaguars.

"I feel good. The knee is 100 percent," Cruz said during an interview with WFAN's Mike Francesa, per Jordan Raanan of True Jersey"[Sunday] was probably my most physically enduring practice, in terms of limitations. You know they have been keeping me down to a number of plays per day. {Sunday] was my most.

"I felt good. Woke up this morning, no injury, no pain, no swelling or anything. I feel like I've crossed that bridge."

Cruz tore his patellar tendon just over 300 days ago, and he has made a remarkable recovery since. After only running and cutting during the Giants' spring practices, Cruz was ready to go when the Giants started up training camp. He didn't spend a day on the PUP list, and after just two weeks in camp, he is ready for a full workload.


Head coach Tom Coughlin agrees that Cruz has done just about everything, and although he didn't confirm that Cruz will play in the upcoming preseason game on Saturday against the Jaguars, he did hint that Cruz will play at some point this preseason.

"We'll pick when he goes [in a preseason game], but he's done everything. [Sunday] he did everything [in practice] — we didn't even have a ... he and Odell both had a full practice [Sunday], and both did well and both are back ready to go [Monday]," Coughlin said, per Jordan Raanan of True Jersey.

Cruz was more confident. He expects to have the opportunity to get out there this Saturday and shake off some of the rust with a catch or two from Eli Manning. When asked if his return will come in Week 2 of the preseason, Cruz responded, "I think so," to reporters. Stay tuned for the return of the salsa dance to a television screen near you.

Cruz's confidence has carried over to the playing field. During last week's joint practices with the Bengals, Cruz took part in team drills against the Bengals' secondary. On one play, he made a quick cut to create separation against Bengals cornerback Darqueze Dennard. He looked like his vintage self, creating separation at the top of his route. 

While Cruz's recovery is remarkable, he has yet to face his biggest hurdle. Cruz's injury to the patellar tendon is known for sapping an athlete of their lateral agility and explosion. These were Cruz's trademark traits, as he was never a receiver who won with size or speed. Once he's back in live game action, he will have to prove that he can still create separation.

(h/t True Jersey)


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