How Does New York Giants’ Victor Cruz Stack Up vs. The Rest Of NFL?

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Is Victor Cruz a Top 10 Receiver?

victor cruz
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Wide receiver Victor Cruz' career is on a rocket-like trajectory. Reports indicate that he is nearing the completion of a new contract with the New York Giants — one that will place him among the highest paid players at his position.

He wants top-10 money. Is he worth it?

To be among and paid like a top 10 receiver, you must first be considered the no. 1 receiver on your own team. There are those that would argue against that, favoring Hakeem Nicks over Cruz among the Giants' wideouts.

Let's take that argument a bit further. To make the top 10 in the NFL cut, on how many teams would Cruz be the No. 1 receiver, if he were suddenly on every team's roster? There are some teams where Cruz would be "the man." There are other teams with quality wide receiver depth, such as the Green Bay Packers and the Denver Broncos, where Cruz would be hard-pressed to crack the starting lineup.

Here are Cruz's career stats (from NFL.com), for a baseline comparison:

2012:

86 receptions, 1092 yards, 12.7 yards per reception, 68.2 yards per game, 10 touchdowns.

2011:

82 receptions, 1536 yards, 18.7 yards per reception, 96 yards per game, 9 touchdowns.

2010:

No statistics in three games played.

Spoiler alert — with this subjective analysis, it breaks down like this: Cruz ranks as the third-best receiving option in the NFC East, behind Dallas' top two receivers and slightly ahead of the Eagles' DeSean Jackson. From each team's game-planning perspective, he is the 16th-best receiver in the NFC and 24th-best in the entire NFL.

Follow the slide show to see how Cruz would stack up as a wide receiver on every NFL team. Let the arguments begin.

Julian Rogers is an NFL writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter (@mrturophile), or Google

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Arizona Cardinals

Larry Fitzgerald
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Larry Fitzgerald is widely considered one of the top two or three receivers in the league. Cruz would be No. 2 on the Arizona Cardinals.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Atlanta Falcons

Julio Jones
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Roddy White and Julio Jones are a potent combination. Cruz would be No. 3 on this roster at best. All-world tight end Tony Gonzalez is back for a final year.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Baltimore Ravens

Torrey Smith
Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

The Super Bowl champions feature speedy Torrey Smith as their top receiver and use the tight end position heavily. Cruz has more recent catches than either Smith or Dennis Pitta, but on the Baltimore Ravens, he would have to adjust to fewer opportunities. Cruz' mediocre 2012 YPR of 12.7 would make him the second or third option.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Buffalo Bills

Steve Johnson
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz could be No. 1 or No. 1A on the Buffalo Bills. His most recent output compares almost equally to Buffalo's top receiver, Steve Johnson.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Carolina Panthers

Steve Smith
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The Carolina Panthers are another team where Cruz could be No. 1 or No. 1A with the presence of long-time lead receiver Steve Smith. Smith still averages more YPR than Cruz, but is nearing the end of the line as a top threat at age 33.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Chicago Bears

Brandon Marshall
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

The career resurgence of Brandon Marshall is complete. Cruz would be a firm No. 2 receiver on this team. His ex-teammate Martellus Bennett is the new lead tight end for Jay Cutler.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals

AJ Green
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Young and athletic A.J. Green is the man on the Cincinnati Bengals, with better statistics than Cruz across the board. Cruz would represent a bigger threat than tight end Jermaine Gresham.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Cleveland Browns

Greg Little
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Browns' top two receivers, Greg Little and Josh Gordon, take a back seat to Cruz.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Dallas Cowboys

Dez Bryant Jason Witten
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz suffers by comparison to Dallas' top two receiving options: Dez Bryant and tight end Jason Witten. He would edge out No. 2 wide receiver Miles Austin.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Denver Broncos

thomas and decker
Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

With Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker and the newly-arrived Wes Welker, Cruz would be the fourth option on the Denver Broncos.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Detroit Lions

Calvin Johnson
Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Megatron. Enough said. Victor Cruz would be a tantalizing No. 2 option for quarterback Matt Stafford.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Green Bay Packers

Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would be the fourth option on the Green Bay Packers, slotted behind vertical threat Jordy Nelson, versatile Randall Cobb and 2012 NFL touchdown reception leader James Jones. All three have comparable or higher YPRs than Cruz, despite having to share the ball with a crowded group of receivers that includes Jermichael Finley.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Houston Texans

andre johnson
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would be a great No. 2 receiver on this offense as a complement to clear No. 1 Andre Johnson.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Indianapolis Colts

reggie wayne
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would be a great No. 2 receiver on this offense as a complement to clear No. 1 Reggie Wayne.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Jacksonville Jaguars

justin blackmon
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would represent an upgrade over Jacksonville's top two receivers, Justin Blackmon and Cecil Shorts.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Kansas City Chiefs

dwayne bowe
John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would represent an upgrade over Kansas City's top receiver Dwayne Bowe.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Miami Dolphins

brian hartline
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz might be able to beat out last year's No. 1 receiver, Brian Hartline, but would take a back seat to newly-acquired wide receiver Mike Wallace.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Minnesota Vikings

greg jennings
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz could very well be the No. 1 or No. 1A receiver for the Minnesota Vikings. If new Viking Greg Jennings can return to form, he will likely be Christian Ponder's top target. Give the nod to Cruz for health and youth.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the New England Patriots

rob gronkowski
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

New England's top two receivers from last season are elsewhere. The remaining two, Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman, have injury issues. Cruz would step right in as a clear No. 1 receiver for Tom Brady. New receiver Danny Amendola has never produced as well as Cruz.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the New Orleans Saints

jimmy graham
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would have a hard time winning the attention of Drew Brees when he's throwing to preferred options Jimmy Graham, Marques Colston and Lance Moore.

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The New York Giants

victor cruz and hakeem nicks
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

For my money, Cruz is No. 1 over Hakeem Nicks. Martellus Bennett's 55 catches last year are history as he will now catch passes in Chicago. Keep an eye out for the emerging Reuben Randle.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the New York Jets

mark sanchez
Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz is the clear No. 1 choice among this sub-mediocre group of receivers.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Oakland Raiders

rod streater
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz is the clear No. 1 choice among this sub-mediocre group of receivers. Tight end Brandon Myers led the team in receptions with 79. Myers is now Cruz' teammate on the New York Giants.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles

desean jackson
Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would be a close No. 1 receiver on this team, slightly ahead of DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers

antonio brown
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz gets a slight edge over incumbent No. 1 receiver Antonio Brown.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the San Diego Chargers

antonio gates malcom floyd
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would step in as Philip Rivers' No. 1 option compared to San Diego's mediocre group of wideouts. He would have to fight Antonio Gates for red zone touchdown opportunities.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the San Francisco 49ers

anquan boldin
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

With No. 1 receiver Michael Crabtree sidelined with a bum Achilles tendon, Cruz would probably be the No. 1 option for Colin Kaepernick, ahead of aging import Anquan Boldin — but it's close. Vernon Davis might end up the top touchdown producer.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Seattle Seahawks

golden tate sidney rice
Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

For as much as Seattle paid to acquire Percy Harvin, his statistics and availability do not rate with Victor Cruz'. Cruz would be the man among Seattle Seahawks receivers.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the St. Louis Rams

tavon austin
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz would be a clear No. 1 receiver in St. Louis. Danny Amendola now plays in New England and West Virginia rookies Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey have much to adjust to at the NFL level.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

vincent jackson
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz might only be the third-best receiver on this team, behind Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams. Both incumbents' YPR far outstrip Cruz' average of 12.7 in 2012.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Tennessee Titans

kendall wright
Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Give the nod to Cruz over Kenny Britt, Nate Washington and 2012 team leader Kendall Wright.

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If Victor Cruz Was a Receiver for the Washington Redskins

pierre garcon
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Cruz is the clear No. 1 choice among this average group of receivers.


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