The New York Giants have yet to officially tender restricted free agent (RFA) wide receiver Victor Cruz, but when they do, it's expected to be of the first-round variety. And with the RFA market so weak in recent years, General Manager Jerry Reese & Co. have little fear that some other team will swoop in and make an offer so large they either can't or won't match it. But perhaps they should worry just a little…
While appearing on NFL Total Access Thursday night, Ian Rapoport reported that "several teams" are already beginning to line up in preparation of making Cruz a long-term contract offer.
Before anyone goes jumping off a bridge or begins to run and scream in panic, Rapoport's comments should be met with a bit of skepticism. First and foremost, any team openly acknowledging that they are going to make Cruz an offer would be subject to tampering charges. Secondly, remember what time of year it is and what the Cruz camp is aiming for in a new deal. Odds are this story was planted by Cruz's agent in an effort to make the Giants nervous.
A year ago, restricted free agent Mike Wallace received some interest from the San Francisco 49ers, but his demands were too much for them and they decided to pass. Eventually, Wallace re-signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers. It was the closest thing to an RFA signing in many years, and if history dictates the future, then the Giants really don't have anything to worry about.
With a first-round tender likely to be placed on Cruz, a $2.9 million salary and the right to match any offers, Big Blue still has all the leverage and is in a comfortable position … this year.
Also…Football, Jerry Reese, Mike Wallace, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Steelers, Victor Cruz