Cruz is retiring from football to join ESPN as an NFL analyst, ESPN.com reports.
Cruz said this past spring that he hoped to continue his playing career, but it was never a likely proposition after he failed to make the Bears' 53-man roster last year. Though serviceable for the Giants in 2016, he's never come close to the pre-injury form he displayed from 2011 to 2013 -- a stretch in which he averaged 79 receiving yards per game. Cruz went undrafted out of UMass in 2010, then burst onto the scene with 1,536 receiving yards in 2011 while helping the Giants win a Super Bowl. He retires at the age of 31, with each of his 303 career receptions coming in a Giants uniform.
Cruz hopes to continue his NFL career but plans to retire if he doesn't sign with a team before the start of the 2018 season, Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com reports.
Cruz failed to make the Bears' 53-man roster last season and didn't play in 2017. He'll turn 32 in November and is now five years removed from his last season (2013) with more than 39 catches and one touchdown. Cruz might find a team willing to let him compete for a roster spot, but retirement seems to be the most likely outcome. He averaged 80.3 catches for 1,209 yards and 7.7 touchdowns from 2011 to 2013 with the Giants before a series of knee and leg injuries derailed his career.
The Bears released Cruz (knee) on Saturday.
Upholding the perceived expectation, Cruz was cut loose by the Bears, despite an affirmation from the wide receiver that he was handed a "clean bill of health" after an MRI, per Josina Anderson of ESPN. Because he didn't find a home until May 25 and the Bears have a critical need for depth at wide receiver, Cruz may not get another chance in the league as he enters what would have been his age-31 season.
On Saturday, Cruz (knee) told Josina Anderson of ESPN that he received a "clean bill of health" after a recent MRI.
Cruz was believed to be a candidate for release or placement on injured reserve due to a knee injury, which he sustained in the Bears' preseason finale. While his health may not be a question mark in the wideout's mind, his cluttered medical chart would suggest otherwise and may play a significant role in the team's decision-making process. On the other hand, losing Cameron Meredith (knee) for the season weakens the receiving corps, meaning Cruz could still be considered for a roster spot.
The Bears are expected to either release Cruz (knee) or place him on injured reserve in the near future, contingent upon the results of an MRI, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.
Apparently, the Bears will jettison Cruz if his MRI comes up clear. If not, he'll be placed on IR and likely receive an injury settlement from the team. Due to the loss of Cameron Meredith (knee) for the season, Cruz had a prime chance to make an impression on the coaching staff, but management will instead roll with Kevin White and a cast of misfits to round out the receiving corps.
Cruz suffered a knee injury and is questionable to return to Thursday's preseason game against the Browns, Adam Hoge of WGN Radio 720 AM Chicago reports.
Cruz was able to walk off the field under his own power, so he may be fully recovered from the injury by the time the regular season arrives. Look for coach John Fox to provide an update on Cruz's condition after the game.
Cruz caught one pass for eight yards while being targeted twice in Sunday's victory over the Titans.
Cruz made his lone reception in the two-minute drill while lining up in the slot. However, his most notable play was when he dropped a perfect pass from Mitch Trubisky on a third down in the fourth quarter. He'll be in a battle to earn a roster spot, and it's possible that the injury to Cameron Meredith improves his odds a bit. Regardless, he hasn't looked like the playmaker we knew from his days with the Giants.
Cruz hasn't gotten much run with the first-team offense, ESPN.com's Jeff Dickerson reports.
Markus Wheaton's (finger) continued absence might have seemed to free up an opportunity, but the Bears have shown a clear preference for using Kendall Wright over Cruz out of the slot. The 30-year-old did have six targets and a touchdown in the preseason opener, but Wright dominated first-team slot work while finding the end zone in the second exhibition contest. Cruz likely will open the year fourth or fifth on the depth chart, if he even makes the final roster.
Cruz caught three of six targets for 11 yards and a touchdown during Thursday's preseason opener against Denver.
Cruz worked primarily out of the slot during the Bears' offseason program, and with Cameron Meredith and Kevin White likely to lock down the starting receiving jobs on the outside, that's probably Cruz's best chance to make an impact. The veteran will still need to beat out Kendall Wright and Markus Wheaton to garner enough targets to warrant fantasy consideration, so expectations should probably remain in check.
Cruz predominantly played in the slot during the Bears' offseason program, ESPN.com's Jordan Raanan reports.
Cruz has mostly played the slot throughout his career, but the Giants moved him outside last season to accommodate the addition of Sterling Shepard. The veteran got off to a nice start with 245 receiving yards in his first four games, but his usage and efficiency both cratered throughout the season as he ultimately finished with only 586 yards in 15 games. He's back at his natural position in Chicago, where Kendall Wright, Markus Wheaton (shoulder) and Josh Bellamy are also in the mix for targets alongside Cameron Meredith (thumb) and Kevin White. Cruz will have to battle for a role, as Meredith was productive out of the slot last season and Wright has mostly played on the inside the past few years.
Cruz signed with the Bears on Thursday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
After missing the majority of the 2015 season, Cruz maintained his health last year, recording 39 receptions for 586 yards and one touchdown in 15 games. The drop in production paired with a $9.4 million salary was enough for the Giants to part ways with the 30-year-old back in February. Now headed to Chicago, Cruz will look to stand out in a group of receivers that lacks a true No. 1 target. He'll be competing with new additions Kendall Wright and Markus Wheaton for a spot behind Kevin White (leg) and Cameron Meredith on the depth chart.
Cruz will visit with the Bears on Monday, The Record's Art Stapleton reports.
According to Stapleton, the Ravens are also interested in signing Cruz, who returned from an absence of nearly two years to catch 39 of 72 targets for 586 yards and a touchdown in 15 games for the Giants last season. Baltimore would give Cruz a better shot to earn a significant role than Chicago, as the Bears already signed Kendall Wright and Markus Wheaton to join Kevin White (leg) and Cameron Meredith in the receiving corps. The Ravens only have one wide receiver, Mike Wallace, with more than 33 career receptions.
Cruz is unlikely to re-sign with the Giants, ESPN's Dan Graziano reports.
Cruz was released by the Giants in February and visited with the Panthers shortly thereafter, but he doesn't seem to have many suitors around the league. While a return to New York can't entirely be ruled out, he'd probably need to accept a veteran's minimum contract and then compete for a spot at the bottom of the depth chart. The best Cruz can hope for is a modest one-year deal that gives him a shot to compete for a job as a No. 3/4 receiver. It sounds like he'll need to venture outside New York for that to happen.
Cruz is making a free-agent visit to the Panthers on Monday, the Black and Blue Review reports.
Cruz's meeting with the Panthers comes after he was released by the Giants last week. While it remains to be seen whether his visit will result in him signing a contract, which he's free to do at any time this offseason, his history with Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman could bode in the team's favor. Gettleman was a member of the Giants' front office when the club signed Cruz as an undrafted free agent in 2010. Although injuries have largely contributed toward his recent decline, Cruz's veteran presence and ability to play the slot position could bolster Carolina's receiving options.
Cruz was released by the Giants on Monday, Art Stapleton of The Record reports.
Cruz caught 39 passes for 586 yards and a touchdown in 15 games played this season, which came after knee and calf injuries restricted him to just six appearances over the previous two campaigns combined. Although Cruz proved his health by only missing one game in 2016, his season-ending totals clearly couldn't justify his $9.4 million salary cap hit for 2017. Knowing that, Cruz hoped to be able to return to the Giants on a restructured deal, but the team decided to move on from him after seven seasons, which included over 300 catches, 4,500 receiving yards and 25 touchdowns. While Cruz being released leaves the Giants in obvious need of a No. 3 wideout ahead of next season, the 30-year-old veteran will now have a head start on considering his options in free agency next month.
Cruz caught three of four targets for 30 yards in the Giants' wild-card loss Sunday.
Cruz finished the season with 39 catches for 586 yards and one score in 15 games. He averaged a robust 15.0 YPC and a passable 8.1 YPT and made three catches of 40-plus yards, but at 30 and with Odell Beckham and Sterling Shepard in the fold, Cruz's future in New York is in doubt.
Cruz secured eight of 13 targets for 84 yards in Thursday's 24-19 loss to the Eagles.
The veteran receiver turned in his most prolific performance of the season on a night when Eli Manning put the ball up a whopping 63 times. Cruz saw a season high in targets and converted those into the most catches he's notched in 2016, while also notching a 29-yard long reception for the second consecutive week. The production was particularly encouraging, considering that Cruz had not recorded more than one reception in any game over the last six. His veteran savvy could come in handy in what is shaping up as a pivotal Week 17 tilt versus the Redskins.
Cruz recorded one reception for four yards in Sunday's win over the Cowboys.
Cruz's quiet season continues, as he hasn't found the end zone since Week 1. He hasn't had more than one reception in his past five games, as rookie Sterling Shepard has solidified himself as the No. 2 wideout. The veteran will look to turn things around next week against the Lions.
Cruz plans to discuss his role with coach Ben McAdoo after not being targeted in Sunday's loss to the Steelers, Tom Rock of Newsday reports.
Cruz entered Sunday with just one reception in three straight games, and although each of those catches went for over 35 yards, he wasn't even thrown to against Pittsburgh. That came despite Cruz playing 26 snaps, which it's worth mentioning trailed Roger Lewis' 29 plays Sunday. While Cruz says he isn't unhappy about his recent lack of involvement in the passing game, he also intends to clear things up with McAdoo, who had to respond to No. 2 wideout Sterling Shepard not being targeted in Week 12.
Cruz continued his tradition of making one big catch per game Sunday, as he hauled in one of five targets for 37 yards.
Cruz has had one catch in each of the last three weeks for between 37 and 48 yards. It's more of a curiosity than anything fantasy-actionable, however.