It was four years ago and Odell Beckham Jr. was in college, but he has a pretty good memory of Victor Cruz’s dramatic 99-yard touchdown catch and run against the Jets in 2011.
“He caught, I think it was an out, or something like that,” Beckham said of the play that helped the Giants win the last Battle for New York Football Supremacy and also launched a run to the Super Bowl. “He made a guy miss and split two guys, I think, and just took off. I think we always clowned him and we tried to tell him he didn’t have as much speed. And you just see that play and any time you can take a play 99 yards, you have to have some speed with you. So I definitely do remember that.”
One of the reasons he does is because it happened in a game between the Giants and the Jets. Whether the players admit it or not, this is a big stage and it is ripe for big plays that will be etched in the collective memory of every sports fan in the metropolitan area for years to come.
On Sunday, Beckham will step onto that stage.
Given his history of spectacular plays that have already become iconic catches — last year’s touchdown against Dallas, last week’s touchdown against Washington — could he come out of Sunday’s game with another lasting impression?
“I don’t know,” he said. “Maybe it’s something that I’ll learn more about while being here. I could obviously see that there would be some kind of thing with the Jets and the Giants. Two teams in the same city, so whatever the case is there. I’m coming to find out, I guess.”