CORTLAND, N.Y. - Dee Milliner hobbled to the interview tent, each step hampered by the large gray boot on his left foot.
After finally getting a taste of the fast-paced training camp, Milliner has seen his development halted by an ankle sprain -- and even he isn't sure when he'll return.
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Milliner, who was injured the same day fellow cornerback Dexter McDougle tore an ACL, said he hopes to return in time for the regular-season opener against Oakland on Sept. 7 at MetLife Stadium. "But like I said, I'm just going to do what the doctors and trainers tell me to do," said Milliner, who injured the ankle at practice Sunday.
Rex Ryan initially told reporters that the second-year cornerback had an MRI, but Milliner said Monday that he got only an X-ray Sunday because his left ankle is severely swollen. Though it's believed to be a high ankle sprain, Milliner said the trainers won't know the severity until the MRI.
Unfortunately for the Jets, injuries have been a recurring theme for the former Alabama star. Milliner missed most of their offseason conditioning program while recovering from shoulder surgery, was a no-show during the first four practices of the 2013 training camp because of stalled contract negotiations and was sidelined during the season with various injuries.
But despite those setbacks (and three separate benchings), Milliner responded and ended the season as the AFC's defensive rookie of the month.
And he believed he was on the right track before his latest injury.
"I felt great," Milliner said. "I was doing well for the most part, practicing well, did well in the first game. I was working toward getting better each day. Something like this is frustrating to me because I want to be out there. I want to be involved."
Dimitri Patterson (quad, ankle, calf) did not practice for a third straight day, but Ryan said "I'm confident he'll be ready to roll soon." . . . Eric Decker (quad), Chris Ivory (rib), Tim Fugger, Jeremy Reeves, Marcus Zusevics and Anthony Grady (knees), Chris Johnson and Garrett McIntyre (pitch count) and Brent Qvale (concussion) also did not practice.