Cruz on contract: My job is to play football

July, 13, 2012
Whether he receives a new contract before the upcoming season, or he enters the year still playing on his current deal, it's not going to be something Victor Cruz fixates on.

"It's going to be whatever my agents are working on with the organization. Whatever timing they feel is right. I'm going to go out there and take care of what my job is and that's to go out there and play football," Cruz said at the Queens Theatre as part of a Time Warner Cable event to help promote his new memoir, "Victor Cruz: Out of the Blue." "Whenever the contract comes, it comes. I'm not going to be sitting back, waiting for it, thinking about it, because then I won't be focused on football. When that time comes, we'll cross that bridge."

Cruz, who set the Giants' single-season receiving record last year with 1,536 yards, is scheduled to make a base salary of $540,000 in 2012. He has said in the past that he feels he deserves a raise, but also that he would not hold out for a new deal and is not frustrated by his contract status.

While Cruz awaits a new deal, some of his fans apparently believe the receiver has already struck the jackpot. Cruz tweeted on July 7: "I love how people think I'm a millionaire lol. That's hilarious." The receiver said Friday that perception may come from him being in the spotlight after his big season. His book is due out on July 17.

"I think because they see me here and there and I'm shooting this commercial and I'm doing this photo shoot, they think I'm some grand millionaire with a ton of money and living up in the hills somewhere, but that's not the case at all," Cruz said. "My mom still lives in Paterson (N.J.). I'm still living in the townhome near the stadium. I'm not in a $1.3 million home or anything crazy like that. It's just the depiction people (have) about you when you start putting yourself out there with commercials and different spots."

Cruz is not the only Giant whose contract has been a story this offseason, as defensive end Osi Umenyiora's restructured deal also garnered national attention. Umenyiora even acknowledged during his contract negotiations that he recognized the Giants would have to pay their younger stars, like Cruz, in the future.

Cruz, though, said that he "didn't really take anything from it" as he watched Umenyiora and the Giants go back and forth before finally hammering out a deal for the upcoming season.

"Osi is his own person so he handled his situation the way he wanted to handle it. He's obviously had a little bit more experience with different contract situations and stuff like that," Cruz said. "Me, personally, I just like to sit back and be quiet and let the people that I've hired to do so and to work on the contracts just work for me."

Matt Ehalt

ESPN New York contributor



You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?