Monday, April 15, 2013

Victor Cruz a no show at Giants 'voluntary' offseason workout program

The New York Giants started their first day of voluntary offseason workouts in East Rutherford, N.J. and there was one noticeable absence in the mix — Victor Cruz.

There was no sign of the free-agent wide receiver near, in or around the facility, said a source.

The unnamed person requested anonymity because the team does not announce attendance for the voluntary workout program. Players were due in the building by 11:30 a.m. today for the program's start.

Before Big Blue fans start breaking their salsa CDs and suspect that Jay-Z's newest client is sending the team a Giant message, remember — it's not a holdout if it's voluntary.

There is no penalty for not showing up, but Cruz's absence likely reflects on his current unsettled contract situation. Cruz has not yet signed his $2.879 million first-round tender, nor have he and the Giants been able to reach agreement on a long-term deal.

Opposing teams have until April 19 -- this Friday -- to sign Cruz to a competing offer sheet. It's possible he could be waiting for this window to close before reporting or signing his tender, or he could have another plan in mind. Players are permitted to participate in the offseason workout program without signing their restricted free-agent tenders.

The fan favorite Cruz has gotten nearly unanimous support from his Giants teammates — including team leaders Eli Manning and Justin Tuck — so it seems like only a matter of time before he's back in blue.

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