- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 22, 2016

ASHBURN — The return of Victor Cruz and potent start of rookie Sterling Shepard gives the New York Giants receiving group more than Beckham Jr., who is yet to score a touchdown this season.

Shepard has benefitted from teams overloading in Beckham’s direction, according to Giants quarterback Eli Manning. The rookie out of Oklahoma has made 11 catches in his 12 targets. He leads the team in receiving yards, slipping one yard ahead of Beckham.

Before Beckham arrived in New York, Cruz was a marquee receiver who went to the Super Bowl in 2012. A torn patellar tendon ended his 2014 season. Last season he did not play after injuring his calf and needing surgery. He’s working his way back. Last week, he caught a 40-yard pass but also fumbled.

“Yeah, I thought Shepard has done a good job making plays and getting open,” Manning said. “So he’s got a little explosiveness to him and has done a good job learning the offense and stepping right in. So, I’ve been proud of his progression and I think he should continue to get better.”


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