Victor Cruz has used the word “blessing” a lot when describing his breakout 2011 season.
So it came as no surprise when the Giants wide receiver used it again when asked what it would mean to him to make the Pro Bowl.
“It’s one of those things that if it happens it’s a blessing, and if not, it’s just something to aspire to in the next years and something to look forward to,” Cruz said. “It’s always been a goal.
“It’s one of those things where you watch the Pro Bowl as a kid every year, and you watch those great guys go out there and hopefully if my name is called it’ll be amazing.”
By statistical standards, Cruz is having a Pro Bowl-caliber year. He ranks third in the NFL in receiving yards (1,358) and ninth in catches (76). On Saturday, he broke Amani Toomer’s franchise record for single-season receiving yards with a 99-yard TD -- the longest in team history.
“It’s still pretty surreal,” he said. “I wake up every day and pinch myself and think about how far I’ve come and all the stuff I’ve done. I didn’t even anticipate this season, I just wanted to come in and hopefully do some things well and find my place. Now, to have a place in history, it’s just been crazy.”
Cruz may not make it, though, because his name wasn’t on the fan ballot, which accounts for one-third of the vote. The NFC and AFC rosters will be unveiled on Tuesday night.
Granted, the 25-year-old would surely settle for beating the team he grew up rooting for and making the playoffs on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
“It is a big advantage playing here with our fans and their natural hate for the Cowboys is always good. The fans will be on our side and it is good to be home, it is good to be familiar with this place and them. It is going to be a good game. They are not going to go down without a fight and we know that. We have to come in and be on our ‘A’ game,” Cruz said.