EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Three days after hearing a pop in his left ankle and being carted off the field, New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard was in uniform at Saturday's practice. He ran at three-quarters speed and did light cutting.
Shepard was running in his uniform and helmet without any noticeable limp despite being diagnosed with a sprained ankle and bone bruise.
"It feels really good," Shepard told the team website. "If it was game day, I could easily go, but I have a little bit of time, so they want to take it slow.”
Seeing Shepard on the field had to be a welcome sign for the Giants. The second-year receiver said he felt the turf shift and his ankle turned 90 degrees when he went down during Wednesday's practice.
He admittedly didn't think he would be back this soon.
"I was kind of screaming, but that's just because I have never felt that pain before,” Shepard said.
Given the way Shepard ran Saturday, it would not be surprising to see him practicing next week. The Giants have a day off Sunday and then three practices (Monday-Wednesday) before their preseason opener Friday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Or they could bring him along slowly. The regular season is still more than a month away.
"I have some expectations, but that's kind of different from what they are thinking, I think," Shepard said Friday. "I am forced to take it day by day, too, and just listen to what the trainers have to say and go with what they are talking about."
In other Giants injury news:
Veterans Shane Vereen (leg), Devin Taylor (leg) and Valentino Blake (back) each returned late in the week and participated in Saturday's longest practice of the summer. Each missed a few days but worked on the side with trainers.
Linebacker J.T. Thomas (knee) and running back Shaun Draughn (ankle) are still on the physically unable to perform list and haven't practiced yet this summer. They were both working on the side with a trainer Saturday, but coach Ben McAdoo has not given a time frame for their return.