Victor Cruz, Giants

A Short Note on Victor Cruz and Catching Opportunity

Jose Vilson Jose 3 Comments

Victor Cruz, Giants

I gotta be honest: I don’t get excited about football very often. My sports identity came at just the right time, too: I’ve been alive for all three New York Giants championships, and the Super Bowl usually came around my birthday until a few years ago. Yet, I never really caught onto it the way I had with basketball and baseball (in that order). Yet, I can’t help but think about the intriguing connect between (arguably) the hottest quarterback – wide receiver combo in the NFL: Eli Manning and Victor Cruz. Eli Manning, the #1 overall draft pick traded to the Giants in the 2004 draft, already had the “Manning” mantle from father Archie Manning and older brother Peyton Manning. Victor Cruz, on the other hand, went undrafted from the University of Massachusetts and later signed with the Giants in 2010.

The average #1 overall draft pick in the NFL has done much better than the undrafted lot. But in no way does that mean that undrafted players have no chance of doing well in the NFL. Warren Moon. Antonio Pierce. Kurt Warner. Antonio Gates. One might call their success luck, but oftentimes, luck means being absolutely prepared for when the very small window of opportunity strikes. Giants fans never forgot his performance against the Jets in the preseason game back in 2010, and neither did his coach. That performance kept him on the roster even after his stint on the injured reserve list through his first season. When he came back, he looked like he had been in the league for years.

Throughout this season, it seems like Eli Manning’s lob down the field or towards the end zone had a chance of getting into Victor Cruz’s hands. Usually, he had to shoot it through a very small gap. It didn’t matter: Victor Cruz was obviously prepared for when it did get to him, so much so that he beat the single-season record for most receiving yards by a Giants. Much of our success has to do with placement and natural talent, but sometimes luck does come into play.

When luck comes through, we ought to as well.

Jose, who needs to break into a mean salsa …

About Jose Vilson

José Luis Vilson is a math educator, blogger, speaker, and activist. For more of my writing, buy my book This Is Not A Test: A New Narrative on Race, Class, and Education, on sale now.

Comments 3

  1. Bill Ivey

    I grew up going to games at UMass as my father taught there, and the phrase “Everybody up for the kickoff!” from the guy who sat just in front of us became a ritual of fall. I also went there for grad school. It’s fun to learn of Victor Cruz’s success (I obviously don’t follow football as closely as I used to, plus I’m a Patriots fan when I do decide to catch a game).
    Placement, natural talent, luck – and the implicit hard work behind the idea of being able to take advantage of luck. Not a bad metaphor for, well, lots of things.

  2. Villager

    Victor Cruz is an electrifying player … and even if he never has a year like this one … this one was worth it. I hope he gets a chance to represent at the Pro Bowl in Hawaii, although I suspect that he would prefer to represent the following week at the Super Bowl.

    Good luck Giants … maybe this will be the year of luck (if not Andrew’s) and we will see a Super Bowl with the New York Giants vs. the Cincinnati Bengals!

    peace, Villager

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