Jason Pierre-Paul's future with the New York Giants remains uncertain after a fireworks accident, even though a person with knowledge of the contract tells The Associated Press the team has not rescinded its $14.8 million franchise tag offer.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to discuss the details of Pierre-Paul's contract situation. The star defensive end was injured in an accident involving fireworks on July 4.
Given the accident, it's unlikely the Giants will sign Pierre-Paul to a long-term deal before the July 15 deadline. That would leave accepting the one-year offer as his only option if he wants to play in 2015, unless the Giants withdraw the offer and make him a free agent.
If Pierre-Paul signs the contract before training camp and the Giants determine he can't play, he could be placed on the non-football injury list and be forced to miss the first six games of the season without pay.
If he waits to prove he's healthy before signing the contract, Pierre-Paul could avoid landing on the non-football injury list.
It's unlikely Pierre-Paul would refuse to sign the tender and sit out the season. If so, however, he would become an unrestricted free agent and the Giants would maintain exclusive rights to sign him until the first day of the 2016 league year. The Giants also could put the franchise tag on him again for 2016.
Eli Manning, at a Louisiana passing academy he runs with his brother Peyton and their father Archie, said he hasn't had the opportunity to talk with Pierre-Paul but is hoping he can get healthy and play at a high level.
''You've got to be smart. It's unfortunate, and you don't know the whole story about how it all happened,'' the Giants quarterback said. ''But obviously you never want to see a teammate or any professional football player or athlete get injured in any way, especially in a way that probably could have been avoided.''
Selected with the 15th overall pick in the 2010 NFL draft, Pierre-Paul didn't start any games his rookie season. He had a breakout year in 2011, posting a career-high 16 1/2 sacks and playing a key role in helping the Giants beat the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl.
The 26-year-old Pierre-Paul has 42 career sacks, including 12 1/2 last season.
Another NFL player also was injured in a similar accident last week. The father of Tampa Bay cornerback C.J. Wilson told a Charlotte television station that his son lost two fingers in a July 4 fireworks accident.
Follow Rob Maaddi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AP-RobMaaddi . AP sports writer Brett Martels in Thibodaux, Louisiana, contributed to this report.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP-NFL