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WR Hakeem Nicks on pace for opener

Hakeem Nicks said today he is "definitely still on target" to play in the Giants' season opener vs. Dallas four weeks from tomorrow. He is less certain, however, when he will return to the practice field.

Nicks remains on the physically unable to perform list (PUP) because of the broken foot he suffered in an organized team activity on May 24. But the foot continues to improve and Nicks is accelerating his rehabilitation.

"I start running (straight) routes today," Nicks said. "We're going to see how that goes. Yesterday I did some stuff, running in circles, running on the outside of my foot, seeing how it feels. I've been doing hills to get my endurance back up. Doing everything necessary to make sure I'm in shape before I step back out there. I'm going to run some routes on the side today for the first time. We're going to see how it feels after I do that today."

He has progressed this far because the foot feels good.

"No pain" he said. "If anything, it's more about me knowing and realizing that it's there, but I can get over that quick. It's just a matter of continuing to run on it, and trusting myself in running my routes."

The Giants will break camp after practice a week from today. Nicks was asked if he'll make it onto one of the fields at the University at Albany.

"We'll see, we'll see," he said. "If they choose to let me go out there and do some things as far as running routes on air, with the quarterbacks, we'll see how that goes, but right now we just need to see how today goes and take it from there."

Nicks will definitely miss the Giants' preseason opener Friday night in Jacksonville. Whether he suits up for any of the other preseason games is a mystery, though not one that particularly concerns Nicks, who has 202 career regular season receptions entering his fourth season.

"I don't really think about it." he said. "My main concern is making sure that when I do step on the field that I'm healthy, and I'm 100 percent. That's our whole focus right now.  (We) need to make sure we're taking the right steps to make it that way."

No matter what happens in August, Nicks is confident he will be in uniform when the Giants begin playing for keeps in September.

"Definitely still on target, no setbacks," he said. "Everything is going well.  I've been running every day. No setbacks. Feeling good. Getting back."

Good news.


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