Thursday, June 20, 2013

All quiet on the western front: Giants' cap number remains the same

The Giants remain $3,308,682 under the salary cap, as per the Leagues' Top 51 Cap Report, since my previous post last Saturday. We are now in a quiet phase of the off-season with respect to team activities. Minicamp and OTAs ceased last week for the former, and the week before that for the latter. While there aren't anymore team activities, there is still work to be done before the beginning of training camp on July 26th, as indicated in my previous post.

Giants front office's to-do list before the start of training camp on July 26th

The following pieces of business--contractual in nature--are on the Giants front office's to-do list:

  1. The Giants will also need to sign 1st round pick Justin Pugh, OT out of Syracuse.
  2. The Giants will need to sign 4th round pick, QB Ryan Nassib, also out of of Syracuse.
  3. If they're going to reach terms with Victor Cruz's agent, Tom Condon (also Eli Manning's and Tom Coughlin's agent) on a new contract for his client Cruz, it'll most likely have to get done before the start of training camp on July 26th.
  4. Cap restructures/extensions.
These 3 contractual items will have an impact on the Giants camp. Pugh's contract will lower the Giants' cap number by slightly less than a million bucks, as I've written about before many times on this blog, both during the Top 51 phase of the salary cap and the after it ceases at midnight EST on September 5th. Nassib's contract though won't count against the salary cap until the Top 51 rule ends since he's guaranteed a spot on the team barring an act of God. The cap numbers for each are listed here, from a post I made 16 days ago:

Cruz's cap number right now is $2,879,000. This will probably change if the Giants and Cruz agree on a new deal for him going forward. How much it changes in 2013 if an agreement is reached by both parties is the key question though since the signings of Nassib and Pugh are looked at as being inevitable. Cap numbers are at their lowest at the beginning of new contracts (see Will Beatty's contract numbers courtesy of

It was broken down in this article by Jenny Vrentas a few months back when it went down.

The reason I bring up Beatty's contract is because it is a good example of a cap number being low at the start of a new deal for a young player beginning his second contract coming off of his rookie deal, something which Cruz will be doing if an agreement is reached. If an agreement is reached, I suspect that Cruz's 2013 cap number wouldn't increase a great deal over it's present number listed above. My guess, based on Beatty's situation, would be that Cruz's cap number wouldn't increase any more than 1 to 2 million dollars, with his cap impact being felt in 2014 and on. This will then lead to more cap room needing to be created before the start of the regular season, when the Top 51 rule ceases.

Cap restructures or extensions won't be needed until the Top 51 rule ends on Thursday, September 5th at midnight New York time, as posted above. Last year the Giants got more breathing room under the cap before the Top 51 rule stopped going into effect on September 4th, when Chris Snee helped the team out--and himself in the process--by agreeing to restructure his contract to give the Giants an extra $3 million dollars in cap space right before the Opener against the Cowboys. They may need to this same thing this year before the regular season begins, for roughly the same amount of money. The Giants made this move with Snee last year on the last day that the Top 51 rule was in effect: in other words, they did this at the last second before they would have begun the season over the cap.

Snee needs to be appreciated from this standpoint because he has helped the Giants many times in the past by agreeing to restructure his contract whenever they needed his help, as is evident by looking at his $11 million dollar cap number now--the second highest on the team after Eli Manning's, as well as the residual effect of his frequent restructurings in the past. The question is who will be willing and able to restructure his contract this year to help the Giants out before the Top 51 rule cessation deadline of September 5th this year? I'll cover this tomorrow.

P.S. Hint: the list is short. Just look at the cap numbers HERE.