Prince Amukamara has spent three weeks saying he hoped to come back in time for the Giants’ Week 2 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. On Monday, he took the first step in that mission.
The Giants’ second-year corner practiced for the first time since suffering a high ankle sprain in late August. Afterwards, he said he was “very optimistic” about his chances of playing on Sunday, even if he isn’t quite at full strength.
“I feel like I’m still not running like I used to,” Amukamara said, “but I still feel good.”
Amukamara said he did nearly everything in practice, although he did not work with the special teams unit. His ankle felt “a little bit sore” immediately after practice, but he was confident that the pain would eventually dissipate.
His return would provide a huge boost for a beleaguered Giants secondary that was down to its last cornerback in last Wednesday’s season-opening loss to the Cowboys. With Amukamara out, fifth-stringer Justin Tryon was forced to play much of the second half against Dallas after veteran Michael Coe left with a hamstring injury, and Cowboys QB Tony Romo threw three TD passes.
Amukamara’s return would help greatly against Tampa Bay, which boasts a revitalized passing attack thanks to the offseason addition of wideout Vincent Jackson. And after watching the young corner practice on Monday, safety Kenny Phillips was sure that Amukamara would be ready to go.
“If I was a betting man,” Phillips said, “I’d bet that he’d be able to play on Sunday.”
BEATTY FEELING GOOD
LT Will Beatty said he feels “no pain” in his injured back, and he’s ready to take his starting job back.
“I’m just waiting until (coach) gives me the go-ahead,” he said.