Victor Cruz's route back to an NFL field now has some turns and cuts.
The Giants receiver who is rehabbing from a torn patellar tendon last October has begun cutting while running in the last week and said the results have been promising.
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"We're doing some agility stuff now, some lateral movement stuff," he said at Tuesday night's Gridiron Gala in Manhattan to benefit the United Way of New York City. "Knee's feeling great, it's responding well, there's no swelling after agility days, things like that. It's feeling good."
Cruz will not be participating in OTAs with the Giants when they begin later this month, but he will be with the team and working on the side.
"The trainers like to have me on the field, whether it's some small route running or drills or whatever the case may be," he said. "I'll be out there for sure."
During the offseason workouts, Cruz actually has been participating in some route-running.
"Today we ran some routes and stuff like that, some intermediate stuff, some cutting, planting left and right and it felt good," he said, noting that he was going at about three-quarters speed. "I think the more I run routes, the more I continue to do it, the more confidence I build in my knee. I'm just excited to continue that and it feels very, very good right now."
His coaches and teammates have noticed him working.
"Depending on which way he cuts I ask him 'How was that? How was that? How'd that feel?' " said Tom Coughlin at the gala.
Prince Amukamara, who was honored at the gala, said he's only seen Cruz run in a straight line so far. "I asked him the other day, have you been doing side to side?" Amukamara said. "He got all cocky and tried to come at me like 'Yeah, you'll see me!' He said he did side to side a couple of days ago. I always joke with him, Do you think you're ever going to get that first step like Victor Cruz? When he comes off the ball he has a quick first twitch, first step. He said it's coming along."
Slowly, which was expected. And surely, which wasn't always.
"There haven't been any major setbacks," Cruz said. "Obviously I come in sore one day here or there and they say 'We'll scale it back,' things like that. But no major setbacks to where we have to push back a week or two or anything like that, thank God."
Cruz is still expected to be back for the start of training camp in late July.
"I'm not in a rush at all," Cruz said. "It's all mental at this point. The knee is strong, the muscles around it are strong, it's just mental now in terms of just mentally can I believe in what my knee can do and be able to trust it and move on."