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Friday, August 2, 2013
Hakeem Nicks downplays groin injury

By Mike Mazzeo

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Hakeem Nicks downplayed his groin injury Friday, and the New York Giants wide receiver says he'll be back at practice in a day or two.

Nicks suffered the injury Sunday. He was limited Monday and Tuesday and did not practice Thursday.

Hakeem Nicks
Hakeem Nicks said he isn't frustrated by his injury.
Giants coach Tom Coughlin said Thursday that he's frustrated that Nicks hasn't been able to practice consistently, but the 25-year-old wideout doesn't feel the same way.

"I don't feel frustrated at all. It's the second week of training camp, and coming off a season like last year, I'm definitely trying to be smart, and I think the training staff is as well," Nicks said.

"I wouldn't even categorize it as an injury, I'm just trying to be smart coming off the injuries I had last year -- the knee and the foot. I'll be back out there as soon as they let me. I think it'll be another day or two."

Nicks said that if it were a game-planning situation going into Week 1 of the regular season, he doesn't think he'd be sitting out. Nicks believes he's on the same page with Coughlin. He wouldn't comment when asked if he thought the missed repetitions in practice are hurting him.

After putting together back-to-back 1,000-yard receiving seasons in 2010 and 2011, Nicks had just 53 receptions for 692 yards in 13 games in 2012, a year in which he was plagued by knee and ankle injuries.

"The knee's feeling great. The foot's feeling great. That's definitely a positive," Nicks said. "My goal is to come out the first two days and explode, make sure I still had everything like I thought I would, and everything felt real good."

Nicks said he expects to pick things up next week a little more, but wants to take it slow so he doesn't have any setbacks. He thinks he probably would've tried to push through the groin injury last season.

Slot receiver Victor Cruz, fresh off receiving a five-year extension worth nearly $46 million, recently said that Nicks is the No. 1 wideout on the team. Nicks is entering the final year of his deal.

"[Victor and I have] always had a good relationship, and we understand our offense, the great offense coach [Kevin] Gilbride has been running here for years," Nicks said. "We understand our roles in the offense -- the outside receiver is the No. 1 receiver in this offense, so that's what I've been doing since I got here.

"Vic has definitely stepped up and been a great slot receiver in this offense, so we've just gotta keep playing hand in hand and contribute to this offense in the best way possible. With Eli [Manning] and coach Gilbride, I think the sky’s the limit for this offense."