Ruiz runs routes during Georgia State practice Monday

One of the highlights of Georgia State’s practice on Monday was Joel Ruiz running routes during an 11-on-11 drill.

Ruiz was still wearing a red no-contact jersey, but it seems his recovery from a knee injury sustained last year is going well.

“Good to see that,” coach Trent Miles said. “He will keep progressing back more and more. Hopefully there will be no set backs.”

Ruiz made the Sun Belt preseason all-conference team at tight end after catching 39 passes for 478 yards and three touchdowns last year as a junior.

Ruiz said during the summer that he hoped to return in time for the season-opening game against Charlotte on Sept. 4 at the Georgia Dome.

If Ruiz could return that soon, it would provide a boost to an offense that lost leading receiver Donovan Harden to a broken foot nine days ago.

That may have been the only highlight on Monday, which Miles described as neither good nor bad.

Miles said the players are starting to get the “middle-of the-camp deal,” so the coaches are trying to push them through to help them become mentally tougher.

“Get them to understand … you have to understand the difference between pain and injury,” Miles said. “Keep pushing these guys to understand that are you aren’t always going to feel good. You just have to go. That’s football. You won’t feel good again until February or March.”

Injury update: Starting center Taylor Evans (bad) was held out for the day after Saturday’s scrimmage. Running Marcus Caffey is completing the concussions protocol and should return soon.

Saturday's scrimmage: Miles detailed on Monday the good and bad from Saturday's scrimmage:

Positive: No fumbles and no interceptions by the offense. Georgia State had 29 turnovers last season.

Negative: Defense didn’t create any turnovers. The defense had eight takeaways last year.

Positive: Wil Lutz hit field goals of 56 and 58 yards.

Negatives: He missed a short attempt, pushing it right.

Positive: The defense tackled well.

Negative: The offense made too many mistakes so sometimes a defender was running through free to tackle well.

“Too many breakdowns on offense mentally, whether it was illegal procedure, or a guy not blocking the end and going up to the linebacker,” Miles said.