On June 14, Victor Cruz temporarily ended his absence from the New York Giants when he reported to the Timex Performance Center and signed his first-round tender, which was for one year and $2.879 million.
If Cruz had not signed his tender, the Giants were able to lower the tender from $2.879 million all the way down to $630,000, but ultimately, Cruz is looking to sign a long-term deal with the Giants before the start of the 2013 season.
Currently, the Giants and Cruz remain approximately $1 million apart in negotiations, as the Giants are standing firm on their offer of $8 million, while Cruz is refusing to budge on his demands of $9 million.
On Monday, while attending the Big Daddy Celebrity Golf Classic, Giants defensive end Justin Tuck spoke to Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN New York and said Cruz did the right thing in signing the tender and should be the first step in getting the contract dispute between the two sides resolved.
"I really think that is going to expedite things," Tuck said at the Big Daddy Celebrity Golf Classic on Monday. "I hope it does. Obviously, everybody wants to see Victor back and he is a huge part of our success. Hopefully everything works out and I think he did the smart thing."
Before reporting to sign his tender almost two weeks ago, people were worried about Cruz's physical condition, as he has been absent from the Giants OTA's and mandatory mini-camp this past month, but Tuck said there was nothing to worry about in that aspect for Cruz.
"Everybody is going to talk about what he has done off the field this offseason," Tuck said. "He is enjoying the limelight that he has created for himself and I can't blame him for that. But I know his trainer and I know where he has been training every day. "I keep tabs on a lot of people," the defensive captain continued. "He will be ready to go. I am not even worried about it. And he has one of the best quarterbacks to ever play this game. Those guys will be on the same page."
The Giants training camp begins on July 26 and some have wondered if Cruz will decide to hold out or show up in East Rutherford and practice without a long-term contract. Mike Florio of NBC's Pro Football Talk reported that if Cruz were to hold out, he would report no later than August 6 because if he held out later than that day, he would lose a year of eligibility for free agency.
In an interview with Paul Schwartz of the New York Post, one NFL agent thinks that Cruz has lost a lot of leverage in the negotiations and has no other choice but to sign the Giants contract, which would make him a very rich athlete for a long time.
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