Last week, rookie WR Sterling Shepard did not see any targets in the passing game in the Giants’ victory over the Cleveland Browns. And for that, he received a personal apology from QB Eli Manning.
This week in Pittsburgh, it was the veteran, Victor Cruz, who did was ignored. He did not take it as lightly as Shepard, saying that he was going to “talk to someone…to find out why.”
It wasn’t Manning however, who approached Cruz regarding the unintentional snub. The QB hadn’t gotten the chance, but said he planned to.
“Yes. Always have a talk with Victor,” Manning said Tuesday when asked if planned on addressing Cruz. “He’s one of the receivers and we’re good buddies. We’ll be fine. We have to get him the ball. He’s a playmaker for us. Unfortunately, Shep didn’t get a target last week and Victor didn’t get one this week. We just have to get everyone involved, get them catches and get them going.”
Instead, it was head coach Ben McAdoo who sought out Cruz to smooth things over.
“He came up to me,” Cruz said about his meeting with McAdoo. “I came into the building, we were getting ready for our first meeting and he came up to me and was like, ‘You are coming to see me, right?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, I am coming to see you.’ Shortly after, I came and saw him and we spoke and then that was it. He was receptive to what I was saying, I understood everything he said and we took it from there.”
Cruz said that he leaves every meeting with the same reassurances but he doubts the Giants will leave him out of the fun going forward.
“I think there will be some concerned efforts to get everyone the football and get everyone involved, including myself, so to answer that in short, yes, it feels like I will be getting at least one target this week.”
The Giants did not purposely exclude the former Pro Bowl wideout out of the passing game on Sunday. It just turned out that way. McAdoo told reporters as much on Monday that the team
“When you have been as inconsistent as we have on offense, it’s a challenge,” he said. “Victor, like everybody else, including myself, wants to be a part of the solution, not a part of the problem. So my door is always open for any of these guys that want to come in and have a conversation.”
That conversation took place today and all appears to be well. Now if only they can get Odell Beckham, Jr. to reel in his emotions and act more professionally, they just might have something.
Beckham chas complained that the officials are biased against him, and the Giants, a charge that may or may not have any weight behind it. McAdoo is taking it seriously saying he will place an inquiry with the league office.
“We have a process to gain clarification on calls that are made during the course of a game,” the coach told reporters Monday. “We’re going to get plenty of use out of that process this week. Other than that, we need to focus on what we can control and learn from this game and prepare for the next. I would say that I thought there were a few times that he may have been interfered with, but that is part of the process. We are going to send it into New York and to the officials and let them take a look at it and get some feedback from it and some clarification.”
This may all just to appease OBJ, but you never know, something may come of it.