WR Hakeem Nicks reception streak ends

Posted Dec 26, 2012

WR Hakeem Nicks did not catch a pass for the first time in his career Sunday against Baltimore

Hakeem Nicks played in the 54th regular-season game of his career Sunday in Baltimore. What distinguished that game from the first 53 was that he did not catch a pass.

After the 33-14 loss to the Ravens, Nicks didn’t want to talk about the end of his streak. Today, he admitted it upset him.

“I was probably just disappointed in myself,” said Nicks, who was targeted three times, including on Eli Manning’s first pass. “Being a playmaker, you always want the ball. You always want to get the ball thrown at you, always feel like you can make a difference. I’ll always feel like that. I feel like that’s what makes me the player I am. I’ve always had the competitive drive in me. I feel like if I didn’t have it, it would be time for me to step away from the game. I know that I’m nowhere near that phase. I’ll just keep trying to get better. I’ve got to heal up and I’ve got some time to heal up.”

Nicks has battled all season. He missed training camp and most of the preseason because of offseason foot surgery. In Week 2, he suffered a knee injury vs. Tampa Bay. He missed the next three games and has not been at full-strength since.

Nicks has practiced sporadically this season and Eli Manning admitted this week that has affected their chemistry in games.

“I love Hakeem and the way he competes,” Manning said. “He’s doing everything he can to be out there. He’s obviously dealing with a frustrating issue that’s limiting him a little bit. He’s out there trying to do his best, so we just have to keep working, try to get on the same page. He missed most of training camp, all of the offseason, so you don’t get that rep time. We don’t get practice reps. He gets a few reps, he’s not quite at full-speed. The timing is off on a few things and it can make it hard to be as effective as you need to be and be on the perfect timing that is required to be really successful.”

Nicks, who never looks to pass blame, couldn’t disagree with his quarterback.

“I was injured this year, it happens in football,” Nicks said. “You can’t control that aspect. You’ve just got to hope for the best, expect the best, and play hard each and every day. Coming off of a long season last season, get right back into it this season, and having a rough offseason, it is what it is. I just had to play with the hand that I was dealt. I’m not going to sit here and make excuses for it. As a man, you’ve got to take… I’ll learn from this, I’ll definitely get better from it, and look forward to it.”

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