This part was expected: The Giants today applied a first-round tender to restricted free agent Victor Cruz, worth $2.879 million, co-owner John Mara said today. Now, the question is what comes next.

Teams around the league who are willing to give up a first-round pick can now make their best offers to the explosive young receiver, and the Giants would have five days to match. While the restricted free agent market has been non-existent in recent years, Mara would not be surprised if the franchise's single-season receiving leader draws an offer sheet from another team.

"Certainly, we’re taking a risk, but we would still have to right to match and if we decided not to do that, we’re getting a first-round draft pick out of it," Mara said today at a joint NFL and General Electric press conference announcing a new $40 million research program to increase accuracy of brain injury diagnosis. "So yeah, it is a risk for us, and he is an exciting, dynamic player. It’s not going to shock me if somebody makes him an offer."

To give an idea of the market, the Seahawks today were reportedly willing to give up three draft picks, including a first-rounder, for receiver Percy Harvin -- though Mara said that doesn't bring him additional concern. On the other hand, Steelers receiver Mike Wallace didn't draw any competing offers as a restricted free agent last year.

Knowing the risk of applying a first-round tender to Cruz, the Giants have been working on a long-term deal with the former undrafted free agent born in Paterson. Those talks have so far been fruitless, and while Mara declined to say how close the sides got, he believes the Giants' offer is a good one for Cruz.

"I'm not going to get into dollars," Mara said. "I don't want to characterize (the gap). Let's just say if he took our offer, he'd be a very wealthy young man."