The New York Giants might be starting from scratch from a leadership perspective, but as far as having some key cornerstone pieces in place on the roster, former Pro Bowl receiver and Super Bowl XLVI champion Victor Cruz thinks the Giants roster isn’t as much in dire straits as it might appear.
“I don't think they're far, to be honest. I think if you look at the roster, they have a talented team,” Cruz told Giants Country as part of a promotional event for Frito-Lay's and PepsiCo's new advertising campaign, "Road to Super Bowl LVI" which also features former teammate Eli Manning, and NFL legends Peyton Manning, Jerome Bettis and Terry Bradshaw.
“Obviously, injuries played a huge part in the season...but when you look at the team, you see the pieces they have, you see the defense, how well they have played all year long, just fighting and scratching and clawing and keeping us in these, in some of these games throughout the year. But you see that they're close. Like they have pieces there, they have pieces that can take them to the next level.”
The problem, according to Cruz, is that the Giants didn’t do a good enough job with ensuring they had a deep enough roster in the event of emergencies. As such, when players started getting injured, all the carefully laid plans for various personnel packages ended up having to be adjusted on the fly.
As a result, Cruz doesn’t think that the Giants could get as thorough of a look at Daniel Jones as they may have wanted, especially given how Jones has yet to have a solid offensive line in front of him in three seasons.
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“I don't know if you got to see a true sample size from him and what he can do with the clean pocket. I don't think you've seen enough of those opportunities for him to make plays. So with that being said, I think they'll bring him back next year to finally get a real look.
“That offensive line is huge, and they need to build that chemistry for Daniel Jones to be the player that we want him to be. … This next year will be it, in my opinion; it's a make or break.”
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Cruz said he’d love to see the next Giants offensive coordinator incorporate elements from the Chiefs’ system.
“I think if we can take some, some bits and pieces of that offense—and we have a guy like, you know like Tyreek Hill in Kadarius Toney that can work the middle of the field, that is quick and fast and can make some things happen--I would love to see a Kansas City Chiefs style offense come to the Giants.”
Check out the full interview with Victor Cruz in the video at the top of the page.