Justin Tuck was disappointed on Monday.
The Giants defensive end said last week that he hoped wide receiver Victor Cruz would show up with the rest of the Giants on Monday for the start of offseason workouts as a show of “good faith” even though Cruz has not signed the restricted free agent tender the team gave him earlier in the offseason. As just about everyone expected, however, Cruz was not at the Giants facility on Monday.
The Giants did not announce which players were in attendance, but Mike Garafolo of USA Today spoke to a source who confirmed both Cruz’s absence and the team’s lack of surprise that he was not in the building. He’s been in the building several times over the course of the offseason, however, and Cruz has worked out with Eli Manning at Duke University recently, so this is hardly a sign that there’s great animosity between team and player.
Cruz wants a long-term deal from the Giants, something the team has shown interest in getting done as well. Until it is done or he decides to sign his tender, though, there’s no reason for Cruz to surrender what little leverage he has by showing up to voluntary workouts. That’s especially true with a few days left for other teams to make him offers, although that doesn’t seem likely given the lack of activity on that front to this point and the belief that Cruz’s main focus is on remaining with the Giants.
If and when Cruz signs his tender, Tuck and the rest of the Giants should expect him at workouts with the rest of the team. Otherwise, it’s a good bet that the salsa music in Jersey will be on hold until the situation is resolved.