COMMENTARY | It's a done deal.
After weeks of speculation and negotiations, Victor Cruz and the New York Giants agreed on a long-term contract extension on Monday, July 8. As first reported by Jay Glazer of FOX Sports, it's a five-year deal worth $43 million on top of the one-year tender he inked last month. All together, the contract is for six years and $45.879 million ($15.6 million guaranteed). The deal should come as no surprise, since it would have been foolish for Cruz to play for a one-year tender and risk injury, but it's good news all the way around.
"I feel relief," Cruz said after signing his contract at team headquarters.
Giants fans no doubt are relieved, too. Cruz, who set the single-season receiving record with 1,536 yards in 2011, is a key part of the team's offense. Over the last two seasons, the dynamic slot receiver has amassed 2,628 yards and 19 touchdowns, seven of which have gone for 40 yards or more. But the Giants were prepared to live without Cruz (beyond this season), if he didn't lower his demands.
Cruz will average approximately $7.6 million per year, a hefty sum, but far below the $10-11 million average he supposedly was seeking. It's not a cap-crushing deal for the Giants, which means they have a chance to re-sign Hakeem Nicks, who is entering the final year of his contract and will be thirsty for his own big payday. The way Cruz's deal is structured, the team has a chance to keep both play-makers.
Getting the deal done now has other benefits. With training camp around the corner, the Giants have one less distraction to worry about and now can focus on what's important -- getting back to the playoffs and making a run at the Super Bowl, which will be held at MetLife Stadium this season.
"We are pleased to have this behind us," general manager Jerry Reese told Giants.com. "Now Victor can focus on football. Training camp is approaching quickly, and we all have a lot of work to do to get back where we want to be."
I never thought Cruz wouldn't sign, but I'm glad he finally did. The undrafted free agent earned his new deal. At the same time, the Giants made a wise investment. Now I'm ready for the season to start.
Adam Martini is a freelance sports writer with more than 15 years of experience covering amateur and professional sports for several print and online media outlets. He tracked the New York Giants for Yahoo! Contributor Network during the team's Super Bowl run in 2011-12. Adam can be found on Twitter @Pegcitysports.Sources
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- New York Giants
- Victor Cruz