WR Victor Cruz, Free agent
HT: 6-0, WT: 200, Born: 11-11-1986, College: Massachusetts, Drafted: ---
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Average draft position
Current as of August 25th. [Full ADP list]Overall: A Johnson (38), P Garcon (39), Victor Cruz (40), R Mathews (41), A Luck (42)
Position: A Johnson (38-WR14), P Garcon (39-WR15), Victor Cruz (40 - WR16), R White (43-WR17), M Crabtree (45-WR18)
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PPR Average draft position
Current as of August 25th. [Full PPR ADP list]Overall: C Spiller (37), L Fitzgerald (38), Victor Cruz (39), R White (40), M Stafford (41)
Position: P Garcon (36-WR14), L Fitzgerald (38-WR15), Victor Cruz (39 - WR16), R White (40-WR17), M Crabtree (42-WR18)
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Victor Cruz' career is going in the wrong direction. After bursting onto the scene in his second year with a 1,536-yard performance, Cruz overtook Hakeem Nicks as the Giants most valuable receiver. In his third season Cruz caught 86 passes for 1,092 yards and 10 touchdowns. Last year, armed with a new contract, Cruz failed to break 1,000 yards and missed the final two games after a knee scope. Fortunately, things are looking up. Ben McAdoo is bringing his up tempo version of the West Coast offense from Green Bay, and Cruz is slated to play the same role that Randall Cobb held with the Packers. Cruz is one of the league's most dangerous inside (slot) receivers and his precise route-running and reliable hands argue for continued success as long as Eli Manning can recapture his accuracy.
2013 Game Summaries
Week 1 - Victor Cruz may have only had 5 catches on Sunday night but he made the most out of every grab and proved to be a vital cog against Dallas. Cruz showed poor concentration on a dropped slant pass early on but quickly shook this off and become a thorn in the Cowboys side. Known for big plays, Cruz blew by two Dallas defensive backs for a long touchdown pass down the field. The defenders were not on the same page schematically and Cruz was allowed to run free for the score. Cruz scored again shortly after on a terrific throw and catch on a post route. Cruz found the soft spot in the Dallas defense over the middle and hauled in the pass before taking a hit. Cruz almost lost the ball as he outstretched his arm to ensure the touchdown but it easily crossed the white paint. Victor Cruz continued his hot streak on a fade route in the corner of the endzone as the Giants mounted a comeback. Cruz got by the defender at the line and created enough separation to the back pylon for Eli Manning to throw a high pass that only Cruz could take advantage of.
Week 2 - Victor Cruz was New York's best offensive weapon on a day where New York did not have many great offensive weapons. When New York needed a clutch first down, Cruz was the guy to get open and move the chains. Cruz also had the longest reception of the game by either team, showing off his deep speed on a 51-yard reception down the middle of the field.
Week 3 - Cruz had by far the most targets in this offense on Sunday but fantasy owners will be far from pleased at his production. The entire passing unit for the Giants had a dismal performance that struggled to complete any passes throughout the entire game. Eli Manning was under a tremendous amount of pressure which really damaged Cruz's potential for numbers in this game. Cruz was used primarily in his most comfortable role, as a slot receiver catching short passes for the most part but occasionally being used as a deep threat on the outside. Cruz was held to short catches in this game and never had the chance to turn a small play into a big play. Cruz hauled in slants and curls against a defense that was playing somewhat soft/conservative with a lead that they held for almost the entire game. Cruz did have one drop on a slant route and still occasionally lacks attention which leads to a higher number of drops than a receiver of his calibre should have. Cruz did pick up some first downs for his team however and first downs were a rarity on Sunday for the Giants. Cruz caught used his speed and agility on short catches to ensure he got enough for the first down. The Giants were completely out matched however and Cruz wasn't given a chance to blossom in this game. Eli Manning tried to force a pass down the field when times turned desperate but Cruz was covered well and it was simply a prayer.
Week 4 - Victor Cruz was the only consistent and dangerous threat in Kansas City. Cruz started off his day with an explosive play down the sideline for a touchdown. Cruz used his above average speed to simply blow by the defender as he blazed down the sideline to haul in a perfectly thrown ball in stride for the score. Cruz then began to catch shorter routes and pass plays as the Giants struggle to maintain pass protection. Cruz showed toughness and good hands as he caught many contested balls with defenders all over him. Cruz was also Manning's favorite target on third down and showed clutch nature by getting open on 4th and 2 as the Giants were driving. Cruz also looked dangerous with the ball in his hands, catching passes in space and getting a lot of yards after the catch before getting tackled. Cruz is clearly the #1 wide receiver right now for the Giants as he works the slot and outside positions with incredible quickness and deceptive speed. He was a big play threat on Sunday and can take any play to the house. His production can be hampered at times by the lacklustre performances of his teammates but it was still impressive to see a stat line like his against the Chiefs despite the offensive line struggling as it is.
Week 5 - Victor Cruz had a very average performance against Philadelphia on Sunday despite a relatively high number of targets from Eli Manning. Cruz caught a lot of short passes but couldn’t quite connect on any deep attempts. Cruz hauled in a lot of slants, curl and comeback routes for first downs and did well to move the chains with tight coverage. Cruz was the targeted receiver on a lot of deep targets from Manning but they all fell incomplete. Cruz did manage to draw a pass interference penalty on a post route, which helped set up a Giants redzone opportunity. Manning attempted to show faith in Cruz on a jump ball attempt but the Eagle player outfought Cruz for the football. Manning began to heave deep balls in Cruz’s general direction but he was either well covered or the pass was overthrown. Cruz is still playing very well but the connection with his quarterback was not there on Sunday afternoon. The two were not on the same page down the field and Manning was very erratic with his passes at times. Cruz’s teammate, Hakeem Nicks, also played a large role in this game which somewhat hurt the production of Cruz.
Week 6 - Victor Cruz had a decent but somewhat under productive game for the Giants on Thursday. Cruz was able to pick up a lot of first downs and move the chains for his team however. Cruz ran a lot of curl/comeback routes where he was able to get wide open against the Bears cover 2 defense. Cruz used good route running and consistent hands to keep many drives alive with Eli Manning. Manning looked to Cruz often when he was afforded extra time in the pocket. Cruz had a nice looking grab on a fade route on the sideline, getting wide open and hauling in the pass before getting knocked out of bounds. Cruz did get a good shot at a pass in the redzone from Manning but the defender committed a foul and he drew a pass interference penalty instead. The production in the passing game was helped out by the presence of the running game with Jacobs. This gave Cruz a lot of one on one situations on the outside, which he was able to take advantage of. Eli Manning still struggled with turnovers however and prevented a lot of potential redzone opportunities for players like Cruz.
Week 7 - Victor Cruz had the most catches on Monday night and was a vital cog in this Giants offense. Manning depended on Cruz routinely for crucial catches over the middle of the field to keep drives alive. Cruz caught a slant, out, curl and comeback patterns to keep defenders guessing and pick up first downs. Cruz showed a great rapport with Manning and the two were on the same page as was evident by perfect ball placement by Manning on his throws. Cruz had a good shot at a deep pass in the redzone from Manning on a fade route but the Vikings defender batted the pass away at the last second to prevent the score. Cruz is Manning's most dependable and reliable receiver in this offense and has a lot of roles for his team. Cruz was able to get wide open against defenders that couldn't guess his route pattern and showed very consistent hands to secure catches. Manning did spread the ball somewhat evenly amongst his teammates however. The Giants were also able to keep the running game alive as they held the lead, which somewhat hurt the potential production for Cruz.
Week 8 - Victor Cruz had a high volume of targets and catches in this offense on Sunday against Philadelphia but his production was still somewhat pedestrian. Cruz was mainly used on short routes and plays to pick up first downs and Eli Manning rarely tried to hit the big play. Cruz caught curls, slants, in breaking routes and comebacks for consistent yardage. Early in the game, Cruz slipped on two pass plays that targeted him and apparently changed his cleats after this which seemed to improve his traction. Cruz got a terrifically thrown ball on the sideline from Manning on a rollout ñ corner route, which fell right into Cruz's hands. Cruz had a shot at a deep play again down the field which he was not able to come up with but did draw a pass interference penalty in the process. Cruz took a big hit as he was slammed to the field in the second half but did not end up missing a lot of this game and showed distinct toughness and willingness to play on. Cruz had a nice catch on a third down in the fourth quarter over the middle which helped kill the clock for his team. The Giants offensive unit really struggled in the redzone and they did not register a single touchdown which hurt the production of a player like Cruz.
Week 10 - Victor Cruz and Eli Manning did not have to put up big numbers to win on Sunday. Cruz played well when he was targeted but there was too few pass attempts overall. Eli Manning spread the ball evenly across the board and did not depend on one receiver. Cruz got his hands on a quick out pattern early in the game to set up a first down for his team. Cruz looked confident and strong as he out leapt his defender over the middle on a high pass from Manning, plucking the ball at its highest point while securing an important first down. The Giants had a free play due to an Oakland post snap penalty and Manning tried to hit Cruz in the endzone but he could not come up with the ball and it fell incomplete. Cruz had a slight lapse in concentration and dropped a slant pattern late in the game. Cruz did manage to get open on the goal line and would have easily scored the touchdown but Eli Manning threw a woeful pass that missed Cruz by a wide margin. The Giants won without a big day from any receiver but they'll definitely need him down the stretch of the season if they want to keep any playoff dreams alive.
Week 11 - Victor Cruz was very active on Sunday evening and posted a solid stat line as a result. Cruz got his hands on the football via a variety of routes and was a thorn in Green bay's side all game long. Cruz got open consistently throughout the game and converted many third downs through the air that helped the Giants win the game. Cruz used his speed to get open at the line of scrimmage against close by defenders and caught the football extremely well. Cruz was able to get wide open on an in-breaking pattern over the middle of the field and pick up a lot of yards after the catch. Cruz had a shot at a touchdown late in the game on a deep pass from Manning but a great pass breakup by the Packers prevented the score. Cruz showed his utility as a deep threat by hauling in a bomb from Manning on the sideline also. Cruz was incredibly versatile as always for the Giants on Sunday and Green bay could never figure out how to defend him throughout the game. Cruz was unable to score a touchdown as the Giants ran the ball well in the redzone but Cruz's clutch play enabled these redzone opportunities. Cruz has consistently shown he is the number one receiver on his team and routinely outperforms his teammates. Manning depends on him in many situations, especially on third down and Cruz excels in this role with the aid of option routes.
Week 12 - To suggest Cruz struggled on Sunday wouldn’t exactly be fair to the WR as there just wasn’t much from Manning to go around, but Cruz’s impact was certainly felt. Only posting two catches on his four targets, both would be felt by the time the game ended. Cruz picked up his first catch of five yards on the Giants third drive, but it obviously wasn’t the length that was noteworthy. With his forward progress clearly stopped as a slew of Cowboy defenders drove him towards the sideline, Cruz was ultimately stripped by Orlando Scandrick just before he could get out of bounds. Jeff Heath scooped the fumble and returned it 50 yards for a TD. Cruz didn’t make another catch until the final drive and it proved vital to the Giants eventually getting into the end zone. Facing a 3rd and seven, Cruz blazed down the middle of the field as Manning targeted him on the play. A poor throw considering the position it put Cruz in, he was forced to open his hips, elevate and turn his back knowing a DB was bearing down on the play. Cruz not only made the leaping catch, but also did a tremendous job to immediately tuck the ball and protect it from the impending contact. The play went for 22 yards and moved the offense to the Dallas five-yard line.
Week 13 - Victor Cruz played another solid yet unspectacular fantasy game on Sunday night. Cruz was an excellent option for Manning on third down and his athletic ability allowed him to get open consistently and make plays for the first down. Cruz ran a lot of short pass plays that were designed to beat zone coverage. Cruz was able to find the soft spot via comeback and curl patterns. Cruz and Manning showed their good rapport routinely as this strategy resulted in many first downs. Cruz was very unlucky not to score on a post route play as he was taken down just short of the goal line. Cruz has never been a big player in the redzone for New York, getting a lot of his touchdowns on explosive plays down the field or big runs after the catch. Though he got open a lot against the Redskins, he could never break a big run or get behind the defense. The Giants did not throw the ball downfield often on Sunday and the running game was always a factor which decreased the number of passing attempts. The defense respected Cruz's explosive ability and often played off-coverage, which allowed him to take advantage of curl and option routes with Manning.
Week 14 - Victor Cruz had an abnormally quiet game by his standards on Sunday. Cruz only managed 5 catches and all of these were short gains. Cruz played well and made the plays that were available but Manning struggled with turnovers which hurt the entire offense. Cruz had an impressive catch and run on a short pass to the outside, using a stiff arm to pick up a first down. Cruz had another good looking catch as he kept his feet inbounds against the sideline after hauling in the ball on a comeback route. While impressive these plays were, Manning did not have his best performance and Cruz could only watch as his quarterback struggled.
Week 15 - Victor Cruz took some punishment on Sunday and was unusually unproductive in this offense. Cruz tried to get his hands on a short play over the middle but took a big shot from a Seattle defender and the pass fell incomplete. Cruz did have a big first down on a corner route from Manning on a rollout play, diving for the ball and getting low to secure the catch. Cruz, however, was outfought for a deep pass from Manning and the pass was intercepted as a result. The pass should have never been thrown as the coverage was excellent and was evidence that Cruz struggled to get open against the Seahawks throughout the game. Cruz tried to make a leaping grab for a high pass late in the end but his head hit the ground hard and the pass fell incomplete. Cruz was held back after this play as the scoreboard was lopsided and the Giants aired on the side of caution. Cruz struggled to get open against the Seattle secondary and they bracketed him well. Manning also made some very poor decisions and receivers like Cruz were never given a decent chance to make plays.