Many experts feel the market will be narrow for the services of Giants’ WR Victor Cruz this offseason. Cruz is a restricted free agent and after the Giants are days away from assigning a first-round tender to Cruz, meaning any other team that makes him a successful contract offer will have to surrender a first-round pick to the Giants.
Normally, high-round tendered players do not receive many offers, and if they do, they usually revert back to their original teams, who are afforded the courtesy of matching any offer.
But Cruz is a special player and some team out there might take a shot at him. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com believes there will be one or more offers floated his way:
The New York Giants slot receiver will almost certainly receive a first-round tender if the team can’t work out a long-term deal with him. And from what I hear, there is already a ton of interest and plenty of teams just waiting for their opening. Yes, it’s tough to gauge a market on slot guys like Wes Welker, Danny Amendola and Cruz — especially in systems that so clearly benefit them. But there is enough interest in Cruz to make me think this could be the year someone bites on an RFA. And if no one takes the plunge on Cruz? Then it may be time to wonder how effective this system really is.
The Giants are ill-prepared right now to present Cruz with a long-term offer. They would seriously have to cut into their core to make a deal with him at this time. The Giants are hoping for the best, which would be nothing happens by way of an outside offer. Cruz would go into the season earning the $2.9 million tender amount and the two sides would continue negotiating.
Don’t forget, Hakeem Nicks is also a free agent next season. The Giants have to walk a this line here. If they break the bank right now for Cruz, they will certainly be up against the wall with Nicks, who will warrant a similar deal.