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Gilbride thinks Cruz's absence gives Jernigan an opportunity

Wide receiver Jerrel Jernigan runs with the ball

Wide receiver Jerrel Jernigan runs with the ball after making a catch during Giants training camp in Albany, N.Y. (July 29, 2012) Credit: Hans Pennink

You’d think the Giants’ offensive coordinator would be pulling his hair out waiting for the Victor Cruz contract situation to be resolved so he could get his star receiver (or one of them) back into offseason workouts. But no.

Kevin Gilbride said today he’s really not concerned at all about the situation, which has the Giants and the restricted free agent negotiating a long-term deal.

“I guess I have great confidence that it’s going to get done so I don’t give it a lot of thought,” Gilbride said. “I know he wants to be here, I know we want him here. The people who have to resolve that does not include me.”

One silver lining to the Cruz absence, Gilbride pointed out, is a chance for Jerrel Jernigan to get an increased role in the offense.

“I’m certainly looking forward to (Cruz) being back, I don’t want to give any impression contrary to that, but certainly I’m looking forward to what J.J. can do inside,” he said. “I think it’s about time he steps up and we feel he has enough ability and he’s been here long enough. Until Victor gets back he’ll be the main guy inside at the slot position. It’s a chance for him to shine and step forward and do the things that we believe he can do.”

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