Super Bowl 2012: Hakeem Nicks Re-Emerges as New York Giants' Top Dog

Jeff Chase@@Real_Jeff_ChaseSenior Analyst IIFebruary 6, 2012

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 05:  Hakeem Nicks #88 of the New York Giants poses with the Vince Lombardi Trophy after the Giants defeated the Patriots by a score of 21-17 in Super Bowl XLVI at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 5, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

As weeks passed by this season, it looked as if wide receiver Victor Cruz of the New York Giants was quickly becoming the team's top target. Things got realigned on the big stage, though, as Hakeem Nicks took back that spot in the team's Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots.

It wouldn't be fair to say that the team's wide receivers don't deserve a pat on the back for a team effort, but at the end of the day, it is all about the numbers you put up.

All three of the team's big-time receivers, including Mario Manningham, provided great plays in last night's big game. However, nobody did more things for this offense than Nicks.

Cruz did have the only receiving touchdown, but outside of that first-quarter score, he was pretty much invisible for the rest of the game. To his credit, he was only targeted four times, but he just didn't come through as the big-time receiver we all expected him to be.

Rather, it was Nicks who was making the big-time catches in the final stretch of the gameβ€”it was Nicks who was putting together a performance that was made up of 10 receptions for 109 yards.

He made some big-time catches down the stretch and topped off what has been a terrific postseason for the oft-injured receiver.

He bounced back in a big way during the playoffs, leading the team with 28 receptions for 444 yards with four touchdown receptions. It was a big way for him to come back, especially after losing the spotlight to Cruz during the regular season.

I am sure that the players are not competing to be the top receiver on this team, but rather, they are just happy to be Super Bowl champions. For the sake of argument, it was made quite clear this postseason that Nicks is still the best receiver on this team.

Jeff ChaseΒ is a Featured Columnist for the Chicago Cubs andΒ Arizona State football.

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