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Cruz sees the NFC East as a race to nine wins

Cruz Getty Images

The Giants emerge from the bye with a poor (for them, and pretty much for anyone) 2-6 record but an unusual amount of realistic hope to make it to the playoffs.

That’s one of the benefits of playing in the worst division in the league.

Receiver Victor Cruz joined Pro Football Talk on NBCSN to talk about a wide variety of topics, including Cruz’s assessment of what it will take to win the NFC East.

“I think it’s going to be nine,” Cruz told Erik Kuselias.  “Anywhere between eight and nine, maybe even 10.  It’s going to be a tight race, especially with ourselves and obviously Dallas and Washington.  This entire division, it can swing with one win, swing from one team to another.  It’s going to come down to the wire. . . .

“I think it’s the race to nine.  Who ever gets to nine first and maybe it’s going to come down to one of those games between ourselves and Washington, later on in the season.  We’ll see where it goes.”

If Cruz is right, the Giants will have to go 7-1 down the stretch.  If he’s wrong — if only eight wins will secure the divison — the Giants still have to go 6-2.

Still, New York can move to 3-6 with a win over the Raiders on Sunday.  Then comes Washington, followed by a rematch with the Cowboys.

“We’re excited,” Cruz said.  “We’re on a two-game win streak, playing some really good football, especially defensively.  Really doing some good things.  Once we put two together, we feel like we can string more together.  We’re coming off the bye where we get Andre Brown back after his setback earlier this season so we’re excited for that.  We’re excited for what our team has in store and we look forward to doing some good things in the upcoming weeks.”

It’s rare to hear anyone from a 2-6 team talk like that.  Then again, it’s rare for the NFC East to be this weak.

Still, the Giants have shown that, no matter what their regular-season record or playoff position, they have the ability to get hot in January.  To have a chance to do that in 2013, they’ll need to get hot (and stay hot) in November and December.

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39 Responses to “Cruz sees the NFC East as a race to nine wins”
  1. newyorkmetsfan says: Nov 9, 2013 10:31 AM

    The Packers come after the Raiders.

  2. abninf says: Nov 9, 2013 10:40 AM

    Dallas will win the division easily.

  3. flyeaglesfly2013 says: Nov 9, 2013 10:44 AM

    Smart Mr. Salsa Dancer…leave the eagles out of the teams competing for the division. Eagles will be under the radar until they shock them all…

  4. dallassux says: Nov 9, 2013 10:49 AM

    Well 7-1 won’t happen with that second half schedule. Sorry

    #nohopeleft

  5. firstand4ever says: Nov 9, 2013 10:55 AM

    Sounds crazy but The Giants could be playing for 1st place in 3 weeks. Giants get Oakland and Rodgers less Packers at home. They will be 4 and 6.

    Dallas will lose to Saints to fall to 5 and 5. They go on a bye and then face Giants on the road with 1st place at stake. Giants win at home and both teams are 5 and 6.

    The Giants schedule has played in their favor. They got off the street Freeman and The Vikes, then a Matt Barkley led Eagles, Oakland with banged up Pryor followed by Green Bay minus Rodgers.

  6. woodrree7 says: Nov 9, 2013 10:57 AM

    7-1? Yeah, good luck with that. your 2 wins are against teams just as bad as yours and after the Raiders you get some tough games…. oh wait the Dead skins are next. they suck just as bad, so, that could be s win too.

  7. cardiovascularendurance says: Nov 9, 2013 10:58 AM

    Cruz is such a blow-hard. The Giants have no chance at all of winning the NFC East. None.

  8. js11js11 says: Nov 9, 2013 10:58 AM

    That’s boy! Embrace mediocrity…

  9. dboys6 says: Nov 9, 2013 10:59 AM

    Yeah cause they have no other option. Bums!! You gotta have some type of motivation right?? Sad that the east is giving them at least one. Pathetic!! Go rebuild, New Jersey!!!

  10. justintuckrule says: Nov 9, 2013 11:00 AM

    I think people should back off with all the “worst division” talk. Yeah, they don’t have sb favorites but they’re not worst than the afc south. Who even plays in that division besides the colts? Is the afc north really any better?

    If the giants somehow manage to go on a run and win the division, I’ll tell you right now that your precious GB and SF, it will be their worst nightmare. And….if there’s one team that Seattle wouldn’t want to host in the playoffs, to a man they will say nyg. Ok, I’m done. Go back to slurping on the NFC west.

  11. ttommytom says: Nov 9, 2013 11:17 AM

    Instead of the usual race to 10 wins.

    The Giants won 3 SB’s as dogs. The best team they’ve had in recent years (2008) didn’t go as far as an average team a few years later. So wins are irrelevant. Getting in the tourney is…

  12. birdsfan4ever says: Nov 9, 2013 11:38 AM

    I love how the Eagles are forgotten! And how firstand4ever says “Matt Barkley led eagles”, like the 7 td performance will lead to benching foles.

  13. rboutote says: Nov 9, 2013 11:45 AM

    Hilarious. Even in their two recent wins they’ve looked God awful on offense. Eli is an interception machine, whether they try to hide it or not. Their running game is a joke… They had to pull has-beens like Brandon Jacobs and Peyton Hillis off the couch. Defensively on the front line they are a classic case of Jekyll and Hyde, and their secondary sucks outside of Rolle. And don’t even get me started on their special teams hah pathetic… Two scores given up in their wins. I hope Oakland puts this team and their obnoxious fans out of their misery this week. There’s only one local team vying for a playoff spot this year gentlemen… Go JETS

  14. donttrip22 says: Nov 9, 2013 12:15 PM

    Worst division WHO ! cares as long as you make it to the playoffs ask the giants . Didn’t you hear MR Jones say there’s no 1-7 teams

  15. thegronk87 says: Nov 9, 2013 12:20 PM

    Giants have some easy games coming up. They will probably be in the mix for the division title as the rest of the division sucks. Still, the rest of the NFC is tough to get far in the playoffs.

  16. paulsmith107 says: Nov 9, 2013 12:24 PM

    Giants are done. I do love that their team and stupid fans are getting their hopes up after two wins in which they just happened to be the better of two crap teams. When I say better not by much though. I would love for the giants to play Dallas on a four game win streak so the cowboys can do what they did in week one. Officially end their season we all know it was done in week one now they’ll just make it official

  17. harrisonhits2 says: Nov 9, 2013 12:25 PM

    abninf says:

    Dallas will win the division easily.
    _______________________

    Then Romo will choke in the first playoff game and Dallas will be done for the year.

    If the Giants do manage to win the next 3 in a row maybe they do have some hope.

  18. thebadguyswon says: Nov 9, 2013 12:32 PM

    Don’t worry Salsa Boy, your team won’t be the one getting nine.

  19. rodeoclownclint24 says: Nov 9, 2013 12:38 PM

    Lol the nfc north has 3 5 and 3 teams and Dallas is 5 and 4 idk but I’m pretty sure that’s a one game difference…pretty crazy how people are all over the norths nuts

  20. pewitttyler says: Nov 9, 2013 12:46 PM

    Curious he did not mention the eagles , who are ya know…………..ahead of them in the race

  21. 25cuts says: Nov 9, 2013 1:37 PM

    Eagles are in a rebuilding stage and yet, still very alive for the division. So I’m gonna sit back and enjoy the rest of the season. Go Birds!

  22. edog1982 says: Nov 9, 2013 2:28 PM

    Im a giants fan and they have a shot but if philly beats green bay my money is on philly. We will know alot about this division after sunday

  23. zack2482 says: Nov 9, 2013 3:19 PM

    Giants are done. And their turnover machine QB is hardly elite. They ain’t winning the NFC East. Keep dreaming Cruz. Cowboys are going to smash them after the bye….

  24. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Nov 9, 2013 3:21 PM

    Giants fans and Cruz forget that they do suc and really are as bad as their record indicates.

    Dallas wins the East with 8 lousy wins.

  25. jchuber says: Nov 9, 2013 3:22 PM

    The NFL LEAST is so terrible, someone will win it with a 6W & 10L . but don’t worry, cause they will be one and done in the Wildcard round.
    Most of these jokers tried to put a Band-Aid on their decrepit teams.

    All the power is out in the west, so get your popcorn ready for the 4PM games.

  26. ohnoflorio says: Nov 9, 2013 3:30 PM

    The giants are funny. The got 2 wins against teams just as bad as they are (except those teams had their b/u QB). You’re 2-6, what makes them think the Raiders & Rogers-less Packers are automatic — YOURE 2-6 4 a reason, you suck. You’re a lot closer to a top 5 pick than the playoffs…but keep talking smack, very very entertaining.

  27. johnnyonthespot5 says: Nov 9, 2013 3:32 PM

    I love how all the cowboys fans are talking like their team is the best ever. When was the last time Dallas made the playoffs, let alone win? They all must have amnesia or something. Or you all must still be bitter from when JPP blocked that field goal in 2011 that pretty much ended your season. So make the playoffs and win a game before you start talking trash.

  28. johnnyonthespot5 says: Nov 9, 2013 3:47 PM

    Oh and for the Jets fans, don’t worry you guys aren’t making the playoffs as usually. For the first time in 3 years at the halfway point in the season you guys are above .500, and all the loser Jet fans think they’re gods gift to the earth. JustEndTheSeason.

  29. jjackwagon says: Nov 9, 2013 3:47 PM

    Race to nine? I’ll be surprised if ANY of them make it.

  30. nyg201 says: Nov 9, 2013 4:08 PM

    rboutote says:
    Nov 9, 2013 11:45 AM
    Hilarious. Even in their two recent wins they’ve looked God awful on offense. Eli is an interception machine, whether they try to hide it or not. Their running game is a joke… They had to pull has-beens like Brandon Jacobs and Peyton Hillis off the couch. Defensively on the front line they are a classic case of Jekyll and Hyde, and their secondary sucks outside of Rolle. And don’t even get me started on their special teams hah pathetic… Two scores given up in their wins. I hope Oakland puts this team and their obnoxious fans out of their misery this week. There’s only one local team vying for a playoff spot this year gentlemen… Go JETS

    Calm down little brother.

  31. footstepsfalco says: Nov 9, 2013 4:12 PM

    who wouldn’t make the playoffs if they finished the last 8 games 7-1 ???

  32. rboutote says: Nov 9, 2013 4:48 PM

    As usually?? Giants fan arrogance at its finest. The GMen are on pace to miss the postseason for the 4th time in 5 yrs… Take a look I’m the mirror before you start judging other teams and their fans. Your overrated coach and QB combo has been a real pleasure to watch this yr from my end. Anything to keep the giants trolls quiet on social media. We’ll see who’s still in the hunt in a couple weeks.. Maybe then you’ll all pipe down for a while.

  33. chawk12thman says: Nov 9, 2013 7:11 PM

    Just got Cruz on my Fantasy Team in a trade. Hope he is right and he starts playing lights out………

  34. chawk12thman says: Nov 9, 2013 7:12 PM

    footstepsfalco says:Nov 9, 2013 4:12 PM

    who wouldn’t make the playoffs if they finished the last 8 games 7-1 ???
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Tamba Bay? Jacksonville?

  35. kev86 says: Nov 9, 2013 11:55 PM

    Whoever says Giants don’t have a chance is wrong and/or really really bad at math.

  36. cantgetenoughwp says: Nov 10, 2013 11:47 AM

    Why do people call Eli a turnover machine? He can’t block himself! Are these the same idiots that say the defense won those 2 super bowls? You can’t have it both ways.

  37. blu4l1fe says: Nov 11, 2013 11:51 AM

    As a Giants fan, I realize and see the reality that the team essentially isn’t going anywhere this season. It would be a pleasant surprise if they do get into the mix going into the last few games. There hasn’t been any consistency across the board from the offense to the special teams. But what I find funny is the rest of the NFC East fans chiming on this board and harking as if their team has dominated the league or the division.

    Face it, YES, the Giants are more than likely the worst out of the East this season, but Dallas, Philly, nor Washington has not really played any good games themselves. Anyone out of the east will get burned in the first game of the playoff game.

    I’ll take my chance on Eli though, over whoever is under center for Philly, Washington or Romo, at least he’s been there, done that.

  38. n0hopeleft says: Nov 11, 2013 4:42 PM

    cardiovascularendurance says:
    Nov 9, 2013 10:58 AM
    Cruz is such a blow-hard. The Giants have no chance at all of winning the NFC East. None.

    ___________________________________

    No Aaron Rodgers?
    No Sean Lee or DeMarcus Ware?
    RG3 and his pathetic gimmick with a weak D?

    You spoke way too soon my friend.

  39. maritibmeblaze17 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:41 PM

    Giants still have to play:

    –The Packers. Even without Aaron Rodgers I honestly don’t see the Packers losing three games in a row. It will be a close game, but I suspect that that game will come to which team makes the least amount of mistakes.
    –The Redskins twice. The Redskins have many problems, but I don’t see them rolling over for the Giants either. Eli Manning leads the NFL in interceptions and the one good thing the Washington secondary can do is get turnovers. So I’ll say that they split both games like last year.
    –The Cowboys once. The Cowboys are in bad shape, but that’s not a guaranteed win either. Romo throws INTs at a bad time and Eli Manning leads the NFL in interceptions. That game will come down to which QB throws the most interceptions.
    –The Lions. The Lions are a better team than the Giants, but this one could go either way. I honestly don’t see a Giant win here.
    –The Chargers–San Diego couldn’t beat the Redskins and has a penchant for losing games in the 4th quarter. But this game, unlike the game against the Redskins, is in San Diego. I don’t see the Giants winning this game either.
    –The Sehawks. Yes they’re coming to the Meadowlands, but the Giants are beating them.

    If I had to predict this is what I would say

    WAS–W (At the Medowlands)
    WAS–L (At FedEx Field)
    GB–Could go either way
    DAL–Could go either way
    SEA–L
    SD–L
    DET–L

    So, even if the two tossups go their way, that gets them only 3 more wins to 6-10.

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