Hakeem Nicks is a spectacular player, but he's not the most durable. That fact surfaced painfully for Nicks and the New York Giants as Michael Eisen from the team's official website reported that the star wide receiver broke the fifth metatarsal in his right foot during an OTA practice on Thursday.
Eisen also reported that Nicks will be out approximately 12 weeks after a screw is inserted into the broken bone by Dr. Robert Anderson in Charlotte, North Carolina tomorrow. That length of injury time would include almost all of training camp and the first two preseason games.
Nicks' conditioning will probably need some attention upon his return, and broken bones in the foot can be re-injured if the player is brought back too early. Chances are Nicks will see no action in the preseason or training camp, which means the Giants made one of the most timely picks in the entire draft when they took wide receiver Rueben Randle in the second round.
Veterans Ramses Barden and Domenik Hixon, and 2011 third-round pick Jerrel Jernigan will certainly have an opportunity to get first-team reps along with Randle, but head coach Tom Coughlin called Randle "pro-ready" after the draft, according to Ralph Vacchiano of the NY Daily News, so the team took him with the expectation that he could contribute right away.
Randle could get the start for the "dress rehearsal" third game of the preseason if Nicks' 12-week timeline is correct. Depending on how Nicks' recovery goes, Randle could get the start for the real thing when the Giants open the season against the Dallas Cowboys on Wednesday, September 5. Head Coach Tom Coughlin said "it's probably going to be close" when asked if Nicks would be ready for the season opener.
Ironically, Nicks said he was looking forward to helping Randle with anything after he joined the team. Getting hurt might be the best help Nicks could give Randle in the name of accelerating his development.