New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz was on Radio Row at Super Bowl 50 on Thursday, and two major pieces of information came from his visit there. First, Cruz' calf injury was actually a torn fascia from which he said he is "about 85 percent" recovered. Second, Cruz said he would rework his contract for a chance to play.
Let's look at both issues separately.
Cruz missed the final 10 games of the 2014 season with a torn patellar tendon. He missed the entire 2015 season due to the calf injury. He finally underwent surgery once it became obvious the calf would not heal well enough to allow him to play during the 2015 season. Cruz said there is "no more pain" but that he will not be allowed to run for a few more weeks.
"I do expect to be able to play," Cruz said during a Radio Row promotional appearance at Super Bowl 50. "The goal is definitely to play this year, and I believe I can be ready for the start of the season. I’ve been rehabbing for some months now, and it’s just a matter of continuing to get back to 100 percent."
"Proceed with extreme caution" has to be the mantra in trying to get Cruz ready for a 2016 comeback. The Giants have to wonder how durable Cruz will be after a pair of devastating, unusual injuries and nearly two seasons away from the game. They have to wonder what kind of player he can be. To make an analogy, will Cruz be the fine china he once was, a regular glass, or a disposable cup? That question leads us to the second topic.
Cruz will turn 30 in November, so by NFL standards, he isn't young. He is in the third year of a five-year, $43 million contract and carries a $9.9 million cap hit for the 2016 season. The Giants would be foolish to pay Cruz that kind of money at this point. Cruz seems unconcerned about the money.
"I don’t care about that stuff," he said on Radio Row at the Super Bowl on Thursday. "I realize the way I came into this game was on a humble opportunity, and wherever this goes, I just want to play. It’s been two years of not playing. I just want to go out there and play, and whatever happens after that happens." ...
"I just want to play," he said. "Whatever it takes, whether it's with the Giants or anyone else. Obviously, the Giants are home, they're family. But I just want to play football, man."
As much as Cruz has meant to the franchise and to the community it would seem almost certain that the Giants would want to give Cruz an opportunity to the field with them. It will be interesting to see what they are willing to pay him to try and make that comeback.