In one of the last maneuvers under the current CBA, the Giants have placed tenders on several of their most prized restricted free agents-to-be … even though many of them could wind up being unrestricted free agents under a new agreement.
According to various sources and reports, the Giants have put second-round tenders on Ahmad Bradshaw, Kevin Boss, Dave Tollefson, and Barry Cofield. They also put tenders on Steve Smith and Mathias Kiwanuka, most likely original pick tenders. Smith was a second-round pick and Kiwanuka a first.
The only way the tenders will matter is if, for some reason, the NFL and NFLPA either agree to play the 2011 season under the same uncapped rules as the 2010 season, or if the new CBA requires players to have five years in the league before becoming unrestricted free agents. In that case the tenders on Smith, Boss and Bradshaw would stick … although the Giants would likely have the chance to adjust their tender offer at any point if that were the case.
How much will a second round tender be worth to the players? That'd have to be hammered out. Last year a second round tender was good for $1.759 million.
The Giants had been reluctant to put tenders on any of their free agents, considering it futile in the face of labor uncertainty. Ultimately they appear to have considered it wise enough to protect themselves and their players in the face of very slim odds that these tenders stick. There was a report that they would give Bradshaw a first and third round tender, but they went with a second. In fact, they went with a second for just about everybody across the board.