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Injuries: Giants' Cruz to return to practice Monday

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Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz will return to practice this week.

Head coach Ben McAdoo announced the update during a Sunday conference call rehashing the team's 21-0 loss to the Buffalo Bills in Orchard Park on Saturday. Cruz dressed for warmups on Saturday but did not play in the game.

Monday's practice is more of a walk-through than anything, so it should serve as a barometer for how Cruz (groin) would fare during a more intense practice on Tuesday. The Giants slot man has been through hell and back in terms of injuries over the past two years (torn patellar tendon, calf and now groin) and is hoping to prove that his comeback tour has some validity.

At this point, we seem to be in a holding pattern with the former Pro Bowl receiver. Any reasonable football fan aware of Cruz's rags to riches story is rooting for a comeback. Cruz is doing his best to silence the doubters on a daily basis -- a tough thing to do considering the minutiae of rehabilitation and the increased microscope on daily workouts. But until a daily health update is not required for Cruz, it will be difficult to imagine him on the playing field come Sept. 11.

Elsewhere in NFL injuries...

» Amid concerns that Seahawks tight end Jimmy Graham could miss the regular season opener as he recovers from a patellar tendon issue, Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll told reporters Sunday that tests on Graham went well and that the team will be increasing his workload. As we've said before, this injury requires a long uphill climb and it seems like Seattle is more focused on getting him for a majority of the 16 games rather than just the first. Still, Carroll provided more clarity Sunday on Graham's progress moving forward than he was able to a week ago.

» Seahawks running back Thomas Rawls (ankle) should return "in a couple weeks," according to the team's official Twitter feed. Rawls was welcomed back to practice last week though the team has not been shy about admitting how slow his rehab will be. At the moment, the Seahawks' running back depth chart seems crazy deep, which allows the club to spend Rawls' down time strengthening his backups.

» Dolphins center Mike Pouncey will at least miss the remainder of the preseason and possibly the season-opener with a hip injury, according to the Palm Beach Post. By far the best player on Miami's offensive line, Pouncey started 14 of the team's 16 games last year. Head coach Adam Gase called the center "week to week" though a hip problem is usually never welcome news for a player who spends a majority of his season squatting in a stance.

» Texans rookie center Nick Martin could be out a long while with an ankle injury, head coach Bill O'Brien told the Houston Chronicle. The issue, sustained during a joint practice with the New Orleans Saints, is being labeled a high ankle sprain though O'Brien was not sure if it would require surgery.

» The Cardinals saw a slew of veterans, most notably Tyrann Mathieu and Larry Fitzgerald, return to practice on Sunday. Mathieu, who started training camp on the PUP list while recovering from his season-ending knee injury, is back doing individual drills in full pads, along with cornerback Justin Bethel and defensive tackle Frostee Rucker. Bothered by a minor MCL sprain, Fitzgerald also practiced on Sunday.

» John Brown is back. The Cardinals wide receiver had been sidelined with a concussion for the greater part of training camp, but was cleared from concussion protocol and returned to the practice field on Sunday.

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