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Injured Jonathan Casillas vows to return for opener with Cowboys

Jonathan Casillas #52, New York Giants linebacker, speaks

Jonathan Casillas #52, New York Giants linebacker, speaks with the media after practice at Quest Diagnostics Training Center in East Rutherford, N.J. on Monday, Aug. 29, 2016. Credit: James Escher

Linebacker Jonathan Casillas, who suffered a rib injury in Saturday’s exhibition win over the Jets, Monday vowed to return for the regular-season opener against Dallas. But after admitting he had difficulty lifting his five-year-old daughter Jade after the injury, Casillas had to qualify the timetable for his return.

“Well, I’m not 100 percent sure, of course not, but my goal is to play in Dallas,” Casillas said. “Whatever I need to do, I’m going to do so I can be ready for Dallas Week 1.”

X-rays revealed no cracks or breaks in his ribs. Casillas suffered the injury when he landed awkwardly in a sideline pileup. He tried to play through it but had to remove himself from the game because of the pain.

How sore is he? “I try not to laugh, cough, twisting and turning, it’s all a little sore,” he said. “I went to a show (Sunday) in New York, and (Jade) was sitting next to me,” Casillas said. “I went to move her from one side to the other and that was very difficult and she’s only 40 pounds.”

Pugh back at practice

Starting guard Justin Pugh returned to practice Monday after missing the past two exhibition games nursing a shoulder injury. He expects to play in Thursday’s final exhibition against the Patriots.

“I would think I would get a drive or two, but obviously, we haven’t talked about that,” Pugh said. “I am just getting ready to go and play and be 100 percent healthy.”

Despite poor preseason play by the offensive line, Pugh predicted it will come together when the veteran starters all get to work together consistently. “To overreact in the preseason is something that I would not urge you (media) guys or the fan base to do,” Pugh said. “I’m not going to sugarcoat it and say everything has been perfect because it hasn’t. But I think we’re going to get this thing right.”

Blue notes

Coach Ben McAdoo said R Victor Cruz rejoined the first unit because “I have a high opinion of him and his skill set. I think he’s a good player.” . . . Four players were trimmed from the roster including TE Matt LaCosse and FB Nikita Whitlock, who were waived/injured, and WR Myles White and long snapper Tyler Ott, who were waived. The Giants must cut 11 more players Tuesday to reach the 75-man roster limit . . . RG John Jerry did not practice (sore ankle), FB/TE Will Johnson (burner) and LB B.J. Goodson (concussion) jogged on the side.

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