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Joe Schoen: Darius Slayton's absence from voluntary workouts 'doesn't change anything' about Giants' draft plans

Last offseason, Darius Slayton viewed himself as the New York Giants' potential No. 1 receiver. This spring, he's looking for a new contract.

Slayton skipped the opening portion of voluntary workouts while seeking a contract extension.

On Thursday, general manager Joe Schoen acknowledged Slayton's desire to snag a new deal but dismissed the wideout's absence, noting that workouts at this stage are voluntary.

"These are voluntary workouts," Schoen said. via the team's official transcript. "There's been players since I've been here that haven't been here, and I understand that. I love Darius. Michael Perrett is his agent. He's a very good friend of mine. I understand where he's coming from, and that's his prerogative to not be here. They are voluntary workouts, so that's understood."

Slayton attended voluntary workouts in previous seasons and has a $350,000 workout bonus in this contract this year.

Schoen added that he hasn't "had conversations about any type of extension" with Slayton's reps.

Last offseason, the 27-year-old signed a two-year, $12 million contract. He is set to earn a $2.5 million base salary with $2.6 million guaranteed in 2024.

The speedster led the Giants with 770 yards in 2023, tied for the most touchdowns with four, and was third with 50 catches.

Schoen noted that Slayton's absence "doesn't change anything" about the Giants approach to next week's draft.

However, if it plays out with the Giants selecting a receiver at No. 6 overall, it could influence Slayton's future. Big Blue recently invested in Jalin Hyatt (2023 third-round pick), Wan'Dale Robinson (2022 second-rounder) and brought back Isaiah Hodgins this offseason. Slayton offers a needed speed element to the offense, but if New York selects a similar player next week, he could see his role diminish or cut out.

In five seasons with New York, Slayton has generated four 700-yard campaigns, setting career-highs last season with 770 yards and 50 catches.

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