Mar 222016
 
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Ben McAdoo, New York Giants (August 14, 2015)

Ben McAdoo – © USA TODAY Sports Images

BEN MCADOO DISCUSSES FREE AGENTS, JPP, AND CRUZ…
Michael Eisen of Giants.com caught up with New York Giants Head Coach Ben McAdoo at the NFL spring meetings in Florida. McAdoo made the following comments:

  • On DE Olivier Vernon: “OV is a guy that’s very disruptive. He jumped off the film when we played them, when we had to go down there on Monday night. There were some concerns going into that game because of how disruptive he’s been. He’s someone that’s going to have be accounted for.”
  • On DT Harrison “Damon’s a guy that is a handful in the run game and can push the pocket inside-out in the pass game, and is going to create some problems for quarterbacks there. He’s hard to keep blocked for long periods of time, and is going to make you better on first down and second down, obviously, but then on third down, too, for as well as he does on first and second down at stopping the run.”
  • On CB Janoris Jenkins: “Jackrabbit, as we call Janoris, he’s a guy that is a very talented, instinctive player. He’ll take some shots on the ball, make some plays for you there, and we do like that. He’s a talented guy.”
  • On LB Keenan Robinson: “Keenan, we’re looking forward to getting up to speed and having him with a rebound year.”
  • On DE Jason Pierre-Paul: “Sitting down with JPP the other day, you could tell he’s got a great look in his eye and he’s motivated and he’s hungry. Being able to train for an entire offseason and get out there for the offseason and for camp, he’ll be full-go, he’ll be disruptive, and we look forward and we’re glad we have him back.”
  • On WR Victor Cruz: “We sat down the other day. I mentioned to him when he went to Cincinnati last year in training camp to practice against them, it was probably the most I’ve been excited about our offense in two years in that practice. He was out there playing well, he looked good, was moving around well. He wasn’t 100 percent, but he was out there with Odell (Beckham Jr.). We had some guys out there playing who were healthy and executing. Unfortunately, that’s the last time we had them on the field together. Glad to have Victor back. He’s motivated and there’s nothing like a motivated player who’s been counted out by a lot of people in a lot of regards. We look forward to the impact he can make.”
  • On improving as a team: “It’s no secret how you build a good team. You have to have a quarterback, which we do. On both sides of the ball upfront, you have to be physical, and we have to have guys that play to our identity – sound, smart and tough, committed to discipline and poise. We’re getting there. We have to develop some young guys as well. All the answers aren’t in free agency. We added some nice pieces there, but we have some young players on the roster now we have to develop, and do our due diligence in the draft as well.”

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Mar 212016
 
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Steve Tisch, New York Giants (January 5, 2016)

Steve Tisch – © USA TODAY Sports Images

JERRY REESE, BEN MCADOO, AND STEVE TISCH TALK GIANTS…
New York Giants General Manager Jerry Reese, Head Coach Ben McAdoo, and Chairman/Executive Vice President Steve Tisch each weighed in on the team’s offseason at the NFL spring meetings in Florida on Monday.

Thus far, the Giants have signed defensive end Olivier Vernon (5-Years, $85 million), defensive tackle Damon Harrison (5-years, $46.25 million), and cornerback Janoris Jenkins (5-years, $62.5 million) to high-priced deals from other teams. The Giants have also signed linebacker Keenan Robinson (1-Year, $3.5 million) and re-signed defensive Jason Pierre-Paul (1-Year, $10.5 million) and linebacker Jasper Brinkley (1-Year).

“It’s all on paper,” said Reese. “They’ve got to get out there and play. We haven’t done anything yet. We haven’t won a game since we got those guys. We were 6-10 last year, that’s all I know. We just have to get better. Talk is cheap. There’s nothing for me to talk about…We had the money this time. You can be aggressive when you have the money…We’re off to a good start.”

“They’re good fits, not just good players,” said McAdoo of the new defensive free agents. “They’re guys who can come in and make an impact, who are young and have a lot of energy, and are excited to be a part of it…(Vernon) jumped off the tape as much as anybody we’ve seen going into a game. He offers a lot as far as getting after the quarterback, but he’s a complete player as well.”

“Jerry put the vision together, gotta give him credit,” McAdoo said. “(Assistant General Manager) Kevin (Abrams) put the contracts together, gotta give him credit. And there was great support from the ownership.”

McAdoo was also asked about if Ereck Flowers will remain at left tackle. “I’m excited for Ereck to develop as a left tackle,” McAdoo said. “Nothing is ever written in stone, but for him to go out there and battle the way he did as a rookie and have a chance to improve on his fundamentals and technique, we look forward to him developing there.”

McAdoo was asked if the team will be adding an offensive lineman in free agency. “We’re looking at every position, not just offensive linemen,” responded McAdoo. “It’s important that you don’t just find starters, you find depth out there. We’ll take help at any position we can get it.”

“I’m excited,” Tisch said. “I think it’s the right time to make these moves, these acquisitions. I think it’s sort of a perfect storm of new head coach, a lot of money to spend and some great players to bring onto the Giants, so I’m excited, I’m very excited. I think it’s going to make everybody from ownership on down excited about the 2016 season. I think you’ll see the enthusiasm at training camp, I think in the locker room, I think on the field. I know that Eli (Manning) is very excited. I know a number of the other veteran players are excited. It’s all about the fans, and the fans are thrilled. If we can improve this club in 2016, I can’t think of anything that’s going to make the fans and the Giants family happier.

“Clearly, the last couple of seasons we saw where we need to be better. Part of the way to be better is to get better players, get a better sense of just how to put players on both sides of the ball that are going to have more impact and make the New York Giants a much more competitive team in the NFL. So the moves that Jerry made, I’m thrilled about. I couldn’t be happier. And the players that are coming onto the Giants this year seem not only to be athletically gifted, but really, really good people and really good guys.”

“It’s the cost of doing business in the NFL,” Tisch said of the expensive contracts. “No one’s buying wholesale. The retail prices are high and there’s a reason – it’s a market, it’s supply and demand. Like any other market, there’s a seller and there’s a buyer, and the price is determined by who’s going to pay for what. I’m not arguing about the amount of money we spent and the cost of what our players are costing us, I just hope we’ve got a group of guys that are going to play their hearts out and really be contributors and proud to be playing for the New York Giants.”

Tisch was also asked about the team’s new head coach.

“I think he’s a first-rate guy,” Tisch said. “It’s a little premature, because he’s been great for me and John Mara to deal with and for Jerry to deal with and for his coaches to work with. But until he gets those players in front of him – which is coming up pretty soon – that’s when his job really starts. But I think he’s going to a terrific, terrific head coach. I think he’s going to be a leader, I think he’s going to be accessible to the players. I happen to think that a head coach who’s 38 years old is a good thing, not a bad thing. What he lacks in experience I think makes up for by what he’s got in his brain, in his enthusiasm, in his passion. And he knows the game. He’s just a great communicator. And I love his enthusiasm; I think that has tremendous value.”

A video of Tisch’s remarks is available at Giants.com.

JEROME CUNNINGHAM AND ADAM GETTIS SIGN TENDERS…
The National Football Post reports that tight end Jerome Cunningham and offensive guard Adam Gettis have signed their exclusive rights free agent tenders. Safety/cornerback Bennett Jackson signed his tender earlier this month. Other exclusive rights free agents who have yet to sign their tenders include running back Orleans Darkwa, wide receiver Myles White, tight end Will Tye, and punter Brad Wing.

Cunningham spent the first five weeks of the 2015 season on the 53-man roster, was waived and signed to the Practice Squad in October, and then re-signed to the 53-man roster in early November. In all, Cunningham played in nine games with three starts, catching eight passes for 59 yards. Cunningham played college football at Southern Connecticut State University from 2009-2012, but remained unsigned until the Giants signed him in August 2014.

The Giants signed Gettis from the Practice Squad of the Oakland Raiders in December 2015 and he was on the active roster for the regular-season finale. Gettis spent two stints on the Giants’ Practice Squad earlier in the 2015 season (September 6 – October 15 and October 21 – November 4) before signing with Oakland. Gettis was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins. The Redskins waived Gettis in August 2014. The Giants signed him off of the Practice Squad of the Pittsburgh Steelers in December 2014.

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Mar 202016
 
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John Mara, New York Giants (December 20, 2015)

John Mara – © USA TODAY Sports Images

JOHN MARA TALKS ABOUT FREE AGENCY…
Newsday and NJ.com caught up with New York Giants President and CEO John Mara in advance of the NFL owners’ meetings in Florida. Mara discussed what the team has accomplished in free agency and the work that still needs to be done.

The Giants have signed defensive end Olivier Vernon (5-Years, $85 million), defensive tackle Damon Harrison (5-years, $46.25 million), and cornerback Janoris Jenkins (5-years, $62.5 million) to high-priced deals from other teams.

“We had some big holes to fill and we were fortunate to get the three top guys – at least according to how we had them rated – at their position,” said Mara. “It’s not something you want to do every year. You have to pick your spots and this was our spot.

“We targeted these three guys. I thought we would get two of them. We ended up getting three of them. What we didn’t want to do is backload these contracts so we run into salary cap jail in a few years. We were pretty successful I think in evening it out. I feel pretty good about it.

“The three guys were a little more expensive than I thought they were going to be, but they are all young, they are all healthy and they fulfill needs.”

Mara also indicated the Giants still pursuing free agents.

“Yes, those were the three guys we wanted going into it,” Mara said. “After that, you’re kind of looking at some lower level guys.

“There are still some players we’re looking at, obviously at a lower level in terms of compensation. But I still think we have some holes to fill. I think we’d like to have another offensive lineman somewhere down the line, another corner, another receiver. There are still players we’re looking at. We may have to wait until the draft if (the right players) aren’t there in free agency.”

The Giants have also signed linebacker Keenan Robinson (1-Year, $3.5 million) and re-signed defensive Jason Pierre-Paul (1-Year, $10.5 million) and linebacker Jasper Brinkley (1-Year) in free agency. Defensive end Robert Ayers (3-Years, $21 million) and cornerback Prince Amukamara (1-Year, $6 million) have signed with other teams.

Mara said he believes that one of three injured safeties from last season – Nat Berhe, Mykkele Thompson, or Bennett Jackson – could start at free safety in 2016 for the Giants.

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Mar 182016
 
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Jasper Brinkley, New York Giants (January 3, 2016)

Jasper Brinkley – © USA TODAY Sports Images

The NFL Network is reporting that the New York Giants have re-signed unrestricted free agent linebacker Jasper Brinkley. The deal is reportedly a 1-year contract.

The Giants signed Jasper Brinkley in September 2015 after he was released by the Dallas Cowboys. He played in 15 games, starting nine at middle linebacker, and finished the season with 67 tackles, 1 sack, and 4 forced fumbles.

Brinkley was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings. Since that time, he has spent time with the Vikings (2009-12, 2014), Cardinals (2013), and Cowboys (2015). Brinkley has played in 94 regular-season games with 42 starts. He missed the 2011 season due to hip surgery. Brinkley is a big linebacker who lacks ideal overall athleticism. He is a physical, two-down run defender who struggles at times in pass coverage.

Mar 172016
 
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Russell Okung, Seattle Seahawks (October 22, 2015)

Russell Okung – © USA TODAY Sports Images

RUSSELL OKUNG AND DONALD PENN SIGN ELSEWHERE…
The New York Giants are interested in improving their offensive line, but two players who they have expressed interest in have signed with other teams.

Unrestricted free agent offensive tackle Russell Okung (Seattle Seahawks) has signed a 5-year deal with the Denver Broncos. The contract reportedly averages $10.6 million per season. The 28-year old Okung, who is representing himself in contract negotiations, met with the Giants last Friday.

Unrestricted free agent offensive tackle Donald Penn (Oakland Raiders) has re-signed with the Raiders. The contract was reportedly a 2-year, $14 million deal. The 32-year old Penn was scheduled to visit the Giants this week, but it appears he was using the Giants as leverage in his contract negotiations with the Raiders.

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Mar 152016
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (December 15, 2015)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

DONALD PENN VISITING GIANTS…
The NFL Network reports that unrestricted free agent offensive tackle Donald Penn (Oakland Raiders) is visiting the New York Giants on Tuesday. (LATE UPDATE: Penn will now reportedly be visiting the Giants later this week). Penn and the Raiders are apparently in a contract stalemate.

The 32-year old Penn was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Minnesota Vikings after the 2006 NFL Draft. He has played for the Vikings (2006), Buccaneers (2006-2013), and Raiders (2014-2015). For the past eight seasons, Penn has not missed a game and been a starter in every contest. He’s a very solid pass protector and run blocker at left tackle.

JASON PIERRE-PAUL CONFERENCE CALL…
New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul addressed the press by conference call on Tuesday.

Q: Jason, obviously you had the offseason procedure which helped your grip and strength in that hand and I know you posted some workout videos. How do you expect that to help you on the field this year?

A: We just have to wait and see. I am doing everything that needs to be done to help [get] my game to the next level.

Q: How excited are you about the free agency additions that were made in the last week here?

A: I am just excited that I have a chance to play football, man. Do what I love to do, come back to New York and play one year and show the fans and show everyone in the organization that Jason Pierre Paul can still play some ball.

Q: It looked like you were able to close your hand better [based on your workout video]. Are you finding that [to be true] now that you are a couple weeks removed from your surgery and do you feel that you still have a ways to go with that?

A: I am doing everything possible to get my hand in the best position to play football. I am still doing rehab to this day even when I go back to New York I will still be doing rehab. I am going to be doing rehab for the rest of my life but it is nowhere close where I need it to get right now but at the end of the day it will be before the season starts but I am capable of lifting weight and closing and gripping and all that so it turned out pretty well – my surgery turned out pretty well.

Q: When Olivier [Vernon] joined the team he said that he spoke with you. What kind of advice and encouragement did you give him in his first season with the Giants?

A: He asked me about the organization and how do I feel about … what was it …  how do I feel about the organization and the team? I said look, “At the end of the day if you come here you are going to be going to be coming to a great organization and we do everything the right way here.” It was just a brief talk. I didn’t even convince him of signing or anything. It was just a brief talk with him, we talked for like 30 minutes and he made the decision the next day so he is part of the team now and I am excited. That was basically it.

Q: Is it a reassuring feeling for you having a player of his caliber on the other side to help generate some pressure?

A: At the end of the day, I am more worried about myself. It starts with yourself first when you play football. You have to do all the right things and put yourself in the best position before the season starts. I think a person of his caliber is going to get the job done – even Robert Ayers [isn’t] with us anymore but he did a great job too so it is all about the person and what they bring to the team so with these news guys that we got I am happy that we got them and now it is time to do work.

Q: In 2014, you guys brought in a lot of new faces, and by the end of that year some of the guys were saying that the chemistry was the biggest challenge getting everyone on the same page and building that family atmosphere. Since you were around that year are there any lessons you can take from that as far as going into this offseason and building that chemistry quicker?

A: We have a whole new team. We have a whole new team, new coaching staff so basically we have to feel for each other but that is what training camp and OTAs and mini camps are for – for guys to build chemistry. We can’t wait too late to build that chemistry, we have to do it right away. Every face is going to be new, the team is different but we all have the same goals.

Q: When you signed, you said that you felt that New York was the place to be. What is it about New York that appealed to you so much?

A: First of all, I have only been in New York so it is hard to go somewhere for one year and try to learn the system and all of that, so I decided that I would stay for that particular reason and New York has the best fans in the world. If you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere so I wasn’t really too much worried about me going anywhere and trying to make it because I know what kind of player I am. But as far as that, that was basically what decision I came upon and I feel like I had unfinished business to do. I didn’t have a full 16-game season last year. It was cut short to eight games but I returned in the final eight games and I was playing pretty well but I know what I am capable of doing on the field and how much I change the defense when I am around. I am more excited of actually getting in during training camp and OTAs and minicamp and actually starting on time and proving – well not really proving to anybody because I always prove to myself because I am doing things now that people said I couldn’t be doing – but just finishing what I started. I am already training and coming in and having a full training camp and getting into the season the very first game. When I step on the field in that first game I have to achieve everything that I want to achieve and I have to stay healthy and play the whole 16 games which I should be.

Q: I don’t want to put words in your mouth but you keep referring to: “I haven’t shown what I am capable of doing.” In terms of using a benchmark, is it fair to say that the 2011 season is what you are capable of doing?

A: That 2011 season is so old I am tired of people talking about it. That was a whole different team; we have a whole [new] team, whole new faces on this team. Like I said, each year you only get better and like I said, my season was cut short last year but I am doing what I have to do to get back to where I was at so I am not looking at 2011, I am looking at the 2015 season and only I can tell what is going to happen so you just have to wait and see. We have a whole new team and starting with myself I have to be that guy that is on that line and is going to produce so I am doing everything that is possible on my end to make me a better player so I am going to have no regrets.

Q: As far as on the field and transitioning from the club to the glove. Have you decided what you would like to use or what is going to feel best for you?

A: I can use whatever I want – whatever makes me feel comfortable. Like I said before, I am not going to use a club next year. If I feel like I want to I can but my hand can be perfectly fine and I have said that multiple times so this should be a question that shouldn’t be asked anymore.

Q: But what in your mind gives you the most comfort?

A: You are just going to have to wait and see. You are just going to have to wait and see.

Q: Do you expect to be a full participant at the OTAs and the mini camps and all of those things and are you having anymore surgeries on the hand?

A: I am expected to be there and I am going to be on time for everything. Anything can happen at any given moment so as of right now I am planning on being there and showing my face and being with the team on April 11th to on out so we just have to wait and see. Anything can happen, man.

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Mar 152016
 
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Keenan Robinson, Washington Redskins (October 12, 2014)

Keenan Robinson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

KEENAN ROBINSON SIGNING OFFICIAL…
The New York Giants have officially announced the signing of unrestricted free agent linebacker Keenan Robinson (Washington Redskins). The contract is reportedly a 1-year deal worth up to $3.5 million.

“I think this is the best fit for me,” Robinson said. “They’re a team that needed a middle linebacker. I think I can fill that role for the team. I’m very excited for the opportunity – and a chance to play the Eagles, the Cowboys, and the Redskins six times throughout the year…It was very easy for me to be a part of this organization, because I’ve seen their success in the past.”

The 26-year old Robinson was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins. He has been an injury-plagued player who has missed time in 2012 (four games with right pectoral tear), 2013 (entire season with left pectoral tear), 2014 (three games with a knee injury), and 2015 (four games with shoulder and rib injuries). Robinson’s best season was in 2014 when he started all 13 games he played in and finished the year with 109 tackles, 1.5 sacks, and one interception. He played in 12 games with eight starts in 2015 and finished with 63 tackles and one interception.

“I had some injuries last season, but I’ll be full-go in the offseason,” said Robinson. “I’ll be able to help out right away.”

Robinson has a nice combination of overall athleticism and size. Versatile, he can play inside and outside linebacker. Robinson is an instinctive, productive player who plays with a reckless style. He is more of a run-and-hit linebacker than stout run defender at the point-of-attack. He needs to improve his overall tackling consistency. Robinson is solid in pass coverage.

“I’m relentless,” Robinson said. “I give my all every play. I try to lead by example. Hopefully, I’ll be able to bring my aggressiveness and my speed to this defense, and help out any way I can.”

The video of a Giants.com interview with Robinson is available at Giants.com.

Mar 142016
 
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Rueben Randle, New York Giants (September 24, 2015)

Rueben Randle – © USA TODAY Sports Images

MARCH 14, 2016 NEW YORK GIANTS FREE AGENT NEWS AND RUMORS…
The official NFL free agency signing period began on March 9th. Here is the latest news and rumors regarding the New York Giants:

  • The NFL Network reports that unrestricted free agent wide receiver Rueben Randle (New York Giants) will be visiting the Los Angeles Rams, the first of several scheduled visits.
  • CBS Sports reports that unrestricted free agent left tackle Russell Okung (Seattle Seahawks) has contract offers on the table from the New York Giants, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Detroit Lions. The Seahawks and 49ers are also said to be interested in his services. Okung, who is representing himself in contract negotiations, met with the Giants last Friday. The 28-year old Okung was originally drafted in the 1st round (6th overall pick) of the 2010 NFL Draft. Okung needed left shoulder surgery to repair a dislocation suffered in the 2015 playoffs and reportedly is still recovering from that procedure.
  • The NFL Network had reported that the New York Giants were one of three teams “in the mix” for the services of unrestricted free agent safety Chris Conte (Tampa Bay Buccaneers). But Conte re-signed with the Buccaneers on Sunday.
  • ESPN reports that the New York Giants have expressed interest in unrestricted free agent linebacker O’Brien Schofield (Atlanta Falcons), but Schofield told the Giants “no thanks.” The Giants pursued Schofield in free agency two years ago, but Schofield failed the team’s physical at that time.

NEW YORK POST Q&A WITH OLIVIER VERNON…
Olivier Vernon on $85M, 6-game chicken wing ban and sacking Brady by Steve Serby of The New York Post

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Mar 122016
 
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Donald Penn, Oakland Raiders (December 6, 2015)

Donald Penn – © USA TODAY Sports Images

MARCH 12, 2016 NEW YORK GIANTS FREE AGENT NEWS AND RUMORS…
The official NFL free agency signing period began on Wednesday. Here is the latest news and rumors regarding the New York Giants:

  • The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the New York Giants have expressed interest in unrestricted free agent offensive tackle Donald Penn (Oakland Raiders). The Seahawks and Raiders are also said to be interested in his services. The 32-year old Penn was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Minnesota Vikings after the 2006 NFL Draft. He has played for the Vikings (2006), Buccaneers (2006-2013), and Raiders (2014-2015). For the past eight seasons, Penn has not missed a game and been a starter in every contest. He’s a very solid pass protector at left tackle.
  • ESPN reports that the New York Giants remain interested in unrestricted free agent left tackle Russell Okung (Seattle Seahawks). Okung visited the Giants on Friday and the Detroit Lions on Saturday, but left without a contract. NFL.com is now reporting that he will visit the Pittsburgh Steelers next. The Seahawks and 49ers are also said to be interested in his services. Okung is representing himself in contract negotiations. The 28-year old Okung was originally drafted in the 1st round (6th overall pick) of the 2010 NFL Draft. Okung needed left shoulder surgery to repair a dislocation suffered in the 2015 playoffs and reportedly is still recovering from that procedure.
  • FOXSports out of Indianapolis had reported that the New York Giants expressed interest in unrestricted free agent linebacker Jerrell Freeman (Indianapolis Colts), but Freeman signed with the Chicago Bears on Saturday.
  • NJ.com reports the New York Giants had some interest in unrestricted free agent guard Jeff Allen (Kansas City Chiefs), but Allen signed with the Houston Texans.
Mar 112016
 
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PRINCE AMUKAMARA SIGNS WITH JAGUARS…
New York Giants unrestricted free agent cornerback Prince Amukamara has signed a 1-year contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Financial terms of the deal are not yet known.

The 26-year old Amukamara was drafted in the 1st round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Giants. In his five seasons with the team, he has stayed healthy for a full 16-game schedule just once (2013). He missed most of his rookie season with a broken foot, battled high ankle sprain and hamstring injuries in 2012, and missed half of the 2014 season with a torn biceps muscle.

Amukamara was off to a strong start in 2015 until he tore his pectoral muscle in Week 5. He missed the next five games, and when he returned, Amukamara did not play as effectively. He played in 11 games with 10 starts, and finished the season with 63 tackles, 10 pass defenses, 1 interception, and 1 forced fumble.

ROBERT AYERS SIGNS WITH BUCCANEERS…
New York Giants unrestricted free agent defensive end Robert Ayers has signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The contract is reportedly a 3-year, $21 million deal that includes $10.5 million in guaranteed money.

The 30-year old Ayers was originally drafted in the 1st round of the 2009 NFL by the Broncos. He signed with the Giants as a free agent in April 2014. In his first year with the Giants in 2014, Ayers started 1-of-12 games before being placed on Injured Reserve with a torn pectoral muscle. Despite missing four games early in the season with a hamstring injury, Ayers had his best NFL season in 2015, starting 11-of-12 games and finishing with career highs in tackles (41), sacks (9.5), pass defenses (4), and forced fumbles (2).

MARCH 11, 2016 NEW YORK GIANTS FREE AGENT NEWS AND RUMORS…
The official NFL free agency signing period began on Wednesday. Here is the latest news and rumors regarding the New York Giants:

  • Multiple media sources report unrestricted free agent left tackle Russell Okung (Seattle Seahawks) visited the New York Giants on Friday, but left without a contract. He will next meet with the Detroit Lions on Saturday. The Seahawks and 49ers are also said to be interested in his services. Okung is representing himself in contract negotiations. The 28-year old Okung was originally drafted in the 1st round (6th overall pick) of the 2010 NFL Draft. Okung needed left shoulder surgery to repair a dislocation suffered in the 2015 playoffs and reportedly is still recovering from that procedure.
  • The NFL Network is reporting that the New York Giants are one of three teams “in the mix” for the services of unrestricted free agent safety Chris Conte (Tampa Bay Buccaneers). The other two teams are the Buccaneers and Saints. The 27-year old Conte was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears. He signed with the Buccaneers in March 2015. In his five NFL seasons, Conte has played in 71 regular-season games with 65 starts, including 13 starts in 2015 when he accrued 79 tackles, six pass defenses, two interceptions, and two forced fumbles.
  • The New York Daily News is reporting that the New York Giants have expressed interest in unrestricted free agent safety Reggie Nelson (Cincinnati Bengals). However, the paper also says the Giants do not consider safety a “high priority”. The 32-year old Nelson was originally drafted in the 1st round of the 2007 NFL Draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars. Since 2010, he has played for the Bengals. In 2015, Nelson made the Pro Bowl after starting all 16 regular-season games and finishing with 77 tackles, 14 pass defenses, and eight interceptions.
  • FOXSports out of Indianapolis is reporting that the New York Giants have expressed interest in unrestricted free agent linebacker Jerrell Freeman (Indianapolis Colts). Freeman is meeting with the Chicago Bears on Friday and the Atlanta Falcons are also said to be interested. The 29-year old Freeman was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Tennessee Titans after the 2008 NFL Draft but he did not make the team. Freeman played for the CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders in 2009-2011 before joining the Colts in 2012. In the last four seasons, Freeman has started all 57 regular-season games he has played in with Indianapolis, including 13 in 2015, when his finished the season with 112 tackles, three sacks, and one interception.

NO COMPENSATORY DRAFT PICKS FOR GIANTS…
As expected, the New York Giants were not awarded any compensatory draft picks for 2015 free agent losses. Compensatory picks are awarded to teams that have lost more qualifying free agents than they gained the previous year in free agency.

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