NBA to NFL Crossover: Nuggets guard Randy Foye

Veteran offers big-play capability
by Aaron Lopez

The routes are run with precision from the wing along the baseline and from the wing to the top of the key, with dozens of variations in between.

Randy Foye is adept at using screens to get an extra step on his defender, and his 3-point accuracy is often a backbreaker for the opposition.

Not unlike an NFL wideout who breaks free for a big play.

With the NFL preseason in full swing, we thought it would be interesting to see where Foye and some of his Denver Nuggets teammates would fit best if they traded their basketball gear for a helmet and shoulder pads.

Nate Robinson (cornerback), J.J. Hickson (linebacker) and Kenneth Faried (defensive end) are lining up on defense. Foye would be suited to join Arron Afflalo (quarterback), Wilson Chandler (tight end) and Ty Lawson (running back) on offense.

NBA Position: Wide receiver

Foye, a 6-foot-4, 213-pound shooting guard showed his big-play capability in his first season with the Nuggets in 2013-14. He made 189 3-pointers – three short of the franchise record set by Dale Ellis in 1996-97.

Foye has good instincts to maneuver through traffic, but he doesn’t necessarily need screens to elude defenders. His most memorable play of last season came when he dribbled from the right wing to the top of the key before draining a 30-foot 3-pointer to beat the Los Angeles Clippers at the buzzer.

His height, strength and above-average speed would make him a dangerous weapon for any quarterback looking for a target down the sideline or over the middle.

NFL Counterpart: Victor Cruz

With size and speed, the 6-foot, 204-pound Cruz has established himself as one of the NFL’s top targets over the past three seasons with the New York Giants.

He finished fourth in league with 1,536 receiving yards as a rookie in 2011 and remains the No. 1 big-play threat for Giants quarterback Eli Manning. He has nine catches of at least 65 yards in his career, including a 99-yard TD reception against the New York Jets on Dec. 24, 2011.

Final thought:

Foye celebrated when Cruz caught a touchdown pass from Manning in New York’s Super Bowl win over the New England Patriots on Feb. 5, 2012. Foye is a Newark, N.J., native who remains a huge Giants fan, while Cruz grew up about 15 miles to the north in Paterson, N.J.