What if Victor Cruz can’t suit up for week one? Where does that leave the New York Giants?
By Vincent Rapisardi
The news seems to get blurrier by the day when it comes to the injury status of New York Giants wide receiver, Victor Cruz. Each week of preseason provided a certain excitement that Cruz would make his return, only to lead to disappointed when he was a scratch week after week.
After he missed the team’s last preseason game vs. the New York Jets, many inside the organization almost promised his calf injury would be ready to go by the regular season opener.
It’s seems as though another projected return date seems to have no truth behind it.
Cruz is now unlikely to play in the season opener vs. the Dallas Cowboys, and a timetable for his return is uncertain, according to ESPN’s Dan Graziano.
— Mike Clay (@MikeClayNFL) September 2, 2015
So what does this mean for the Giants?
Well, the image of Cha Cha Cruz, has blown up ever since the Giants Super Bowl XLVI run. He went from an undrafted free agent to all of a sudden the star of the Giants offense, and one of the more widely recognized names in the NFL.
His name recognition is what’s going to make fans overreact to what I have to say, but personally, by no means do I think Cruz is irreplaceable.
Last season, only playing in six games after tearing his patellar tendon, he accumulated six dropped passes, which put him in the top 20 at the position. Missing 10 ten games, and still being that high on the worst category possible for a wide receiver, is never a good thing.
I wrote about this recently so I don’t want to sound repetitive, but because of injury concerns, his high salary cap number, and his lack of production because of injury, it wouldn’t surprise me if the team went in a different direction next season.
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Availability is sometimes the most important asset. If you can’t take the field, what role do you serve as a player?
Folks, I understand he’s missed games due to injury, but his numbers are slowly dipping year after year. And with recurring leg injuries, I don’t think we will ever see the 2011 Cruz, who racked up over 1,500 yards receiving.
Sorry, I just don’t see it.
I know you have his jersey at home, and it hurts to read, but Cruz’s impact on the Giants offense isn’t as important as it used to be now with Odell Beckham Jr. and Rueben Randle in the picture.
Just think of the success the Giants have had drafting wide receivers over the past decade.
Hakeem Nicks – although his career didn’t last long as a Giant, his 2011 playoff performance of 28 receptions, over 400 receiving yards, and 4 touchdowns, can’t go unnoticed – Mario Manningham, Steve Smith, Cruz (signed as an undrafted free agent), Rueben Randle, and Odell Beckham Jr.
Although many of these receivers didn’t put together lengthy careers with New York, many played big in championship moments.
It seems as though lately, the Giants have plugged just about anyone in at wide receiver and have gotten something productive in return.
Even Randle, who’s struggled with learning the offense, almost broke 1,000 receiving yards last season.
I’ll keep saying it, but the offense will go as far as the offensive line goes. An effective top 10 or 15 run game for quarterback Eli Manning, and a healthy Beckham Jr. will be just enough for this offense to be successful.
Having Cruz on the field won’t hurt, but to say he’s a huge loss by not playing may be a stretch. As crazy as that might sound.
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