Former New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz announced his retirement from the NFL on Tuesday and is set to join ESPN as an NFL analyst.
Cruz announced his intentions in a video posted on UNINTERRUPTED. He will make his ESPN debut on Wednesday.
“As I officially close one chapter of my life and begin another, I could not be more thrilled to join another championship team at ESPN,” Cruz said in a statement. “I’m excited to get started and share my insight and analysis with the viewers and fans of the NFL.”
Cruz said in May he had a date in mind that he would retire if he remained unsigned, hinting at training camp being the unofficial deadline. He finishes his career with 303 receptions in 70 regular-season games.
The 31-year-old former Pro Bowl player was a member of the Chicago Bears last year before being cut in early September and sitting out the entire regular season.
Cruz had 39 catches for 586 yards and a touchdown during his last season with the Giants in 2016. He missed the entire previous year recovering from a patellar tendon tear in his right knee sustained during a game in 2014.
“Tremendous player, and a great guy,” said Giants quarterback Eli Manning. “He was in the locker room a few weeks ago. I got to talk with him and hang out with him. Obviously, I wish him all the best going forward. I think he’s gone to the dark side and has gone into the media (laughter). I wish him all the best going over there.”
From 2011-13, Cruz caught 241 passes for 3,626 yards and 23 touchdowns. He was Pro Bowler in 2011.
“What a great Giant,” said current Giants coach Pat Shurmur. “I remember playing against him when I was in Philly and we were certainly well aware of the impact he could have on a ball game. I had a chance to meet him and be around him, and he certainly doesn’t need an invite from me, but much like all the ex-Giants, I look forward to seeing him at practice any time he wants to be here. So, congratulations to him.”
—Field Level Media