Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Knee Surgery Finishes Cruz's Season

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Knee Surgery Finishes Cruz's Season

Article excerpt

EAST RUTHERFORD -- Victor Cruz's season ended on an operating table, not on the football field.

And with him went maybe the lone bright spot left on the Giants' offense.

The receiver underwent left knee surgery Thursday performed by renowned surgeon Dr. James Andrews in Pensacola, Fla.

The arthroscopic debridement "cleaned up" or removed damaged cartilage from the Paterson native's knee, according to Dr. Vincent McInerney, an orthopedic surgeon and director of Sports Medicine at Seton Hall University's School of Health & Medical Sciences.

Cruz probably will recover in three to four weeks from what is considered minor surgery, said McInerney, who cautioned that he is not involved in his care. The Giants have only two games remaining.

"It is better than a ligament injury," McInerney said. "The ligament injuries, like a torn ACL, are much more devastating.

"Not being a major ligament injury, that's good news. He should be ready to go next season pending any other problems. The prognosis is most likely good."

Cruz, 27, had flown to Florida to receive a second opinion from Andrews on Thursday after being examined by Giants doctors.

He became the eighth key member of the offense lost to injury. The group includes five of the Giants' original 11 starters -- Cruz, Chris Snee, David Baas, David Wilson and Henry Hynoski.

The offense also lost Jim Cordle, Brandon Jacobs and Da'Rel Scott. And Andre Brown missed eight games while on temporary injured reserve.

The rash of injuries partially explains why the Giants (5-9) are ranked 28th in the NFL in offense (311.6 yards per game) and 30th in scoring (17.9 points per game).

"I don't know numbers-wise [how many injuries we've suffered], but it's been a challenge, there's no question about that," offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride said before the surgery was announced. "It's been difficult. ...

"There's no question that [injuries have] been a factor in our play."

Cruz's campaign effectively ends with 73 receptions for 998 yards and four touchdowns. …

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