The trio of Cruz, Hakeem Nicks, and Rueben Randle has fans and fantasy owners on the edge of their seats with anticipation-but should they be?
We all know what Cruz can do, but last season we saw some regression from the young receiver.
Cruz drastically fell of the map last season in terms of total yards, even though he nabbed more catches. Cruz hauled in 86 balls for 1,092 yards in 2012, a step back from the 1,536 on 82 receptions the year prior.
So what’s the cause?
You could blame the absence of Nicks for three games, or a defense that struggled to get opposing offenses off the field, but why not go to the source?
Cruz struggled to create separation both before and after the catch last season. For receptions over 20-yards, Cruz slipped from 25 in 2011, to only 12 in 2012.
An even bigger indication of his on the field setbacks was his growing number of drops. Cruz dropped 11 passes last season according to Sportingcharts.com. That number was tied for second most in the league.
We all know just how good Cruz is and can be, but with a five-year extension in his back pocket, and the prime of his career ahead, Cruz needs to minimize the drops and become a true number one receiver in the NFL.
As for Nicks and Randle, the former has yet to be healthy enough to finish out an entire season, and the latter just finished up his rookie campaign.
New York has the tools to make this a very exciting season, but there’s still a lot of questions facing this receiving core entering next season.
Kyle McMorrow | Featured Columnist