The receiver might have grown up in Paterson, N.J., in the shadow of Giants Stadium, but he was a die-hard Cowboys fan, a trait he inherited from his late father. As recently as the 2007 playoffs, when the Giants beat the Cowboys, Cruz said he was heartbroken by the loss.
Latest Giants stories
"I was a pretty avid Cowboys fan," he said. He even used to wear a Deion Sanders throwback jersey.
Now, of course, Cruz is rooting for the Giants (although he did reference the Cowboys as "we" when talking about the 2007 playoff game). He's not far enough removed from his days as a fan to muster the kind of hatred that teammates Justin Tuck and Brandon Jacobs often profess.
"None of that hatred yet," he said. "Of course you want to go in there, you understand the rivalry, you understand that a lot of Giants fans don't like the Cowboys. You want to go out and play your game and hope we win."
And by "we," he means the Giants. Probably.
"He kept on playing, to his credit," Tom Coughlin said. "He really didn't have that other gear, which you probably observed. But that was the reason."
Nicks said he was not able to use his normal, intensive pregame stretching routine with strength and conditioning coach Jerry Palmieri for the last two games because they were 1 o'clock starts.
He didn't practice and probably won't Thursday, but Nicks said he plans on playing, even if he's not 100 percent.