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Frustrated Victor Cruz intends to play for NY Giants despite latest setback with calf injury


EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey — Despite another setback with his injury calf, wide receiver Victor Cruz believes he will play for the New York Giants this season.

Speaking Friday for the first time since experiencing another problem with his left calf, Cruz confirmed that he received a shot of platelet-rich plasma on Thursday in an effort to hasten his recovery.

Coach Tom Coughlin and Cruz said there is no timetable for the 28-year-old's return.

Cruz had hoped to play on Sunday against the Bills in Buffalo, but the calf didn't feel right on Wednesday when he tried to run full speed. He shut it down after talking with trainers.

Best down for his salsa dances after scoring, Cruz hasn't played in a game since sustaining a season-ending knee injury on Oct. 12 against the Eagles. It was his second knee injury in as many years.

Cruz was starting to look good in training came in mid-August until he injured his calf. He has been unable to practice and has missed the first three games of the season.

"I am sitting down and I looked up last night in the bedroom like: 'This has got to end,'" Cruz said Friday. "I am tired of looking at reporters every day. I'd rather be looking at green grass and numbered lines on the field. I haven't lost faith. I now that my time is going to come. When that time is, is still up in the air. But I know my time will come back here in a blue uniform with the New York Giants."

Coughlin said the Giants (1-2) are not thinking about placing Cruz on injured reserve at this point.

"This team and this coaching staff they believe in me and they have believed in me since I walked through these doors and showed my ability," said Cruz, a one-time free agent who emerged as one of the league's top receivers. "I want to give that back to them. I want to be out there and I want to play. They understand how much I want to play and how much I love this game. I want to continue to prove that."

Cruz said there are no guarantees that the injection will help. Doctors have told him that it either will help or have no effect. He will be evaluated again on Monday.

Still, the disappointment for Cruz was obvious. He was optimistic about playing on Monday after running pass routes at three quarter speed.

Two days later, the calf was a problem and 24 hours after that Coughlin said Cruz had no chance of playing on Sunday.

"You gear up for that moment when you are ready to play and ready to go and you have another setback," said Cruz, who had 23 touchdown catches between 2011-13, earning a Pro Bowl spot in 2012 . "Hopefully, it's the last setback."

NOTES: DE Robert Ayers Jr. (hamstring), TE Jerome Cunningham (knee) and DT Markus Kuhn (knee) will not play on Sunday. OT Ereck Flowers (ankle) and TE Daniel Fells (ankle) are questionable. Coughlin said Flowers has progressed well the past two days.

AP NFL website: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL

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