Mar 082015
 
Share Button
Jerry Hughes, Buffalo Bills (December 21, 2014)

Jerry Hughes – © USA TODAY Sports Images

ESPN is reporting that the New York Giants are interested in unrestricted free agents defensive end Jerry Hughes (Buffalo Bills), defensive end/linebacker Pernell McPhee (Baltimore Ravens), defensive end/linebacker Brandon Graham (Philadelphia Eagles), and defensive tackle Dan Williams (Arizona Cardinals).

The 26-year old Hughes (6’2”, 254 lbs) started 16 games in 2014 and finished with 53 tackles, 10 sacks, and three forced fumbles. The 26-year old McPhee (6’3” 280 lbs) did not start a game but was a key reserve for the Ravens, accruing 27 tackles, 7.5 sacks, and one force fumble. The 26-year old Graham (6’2”, 265 lbs) started one game for the Eagles, and finished the year with 47 tackles, 5.5 sacks, and four forced fumbles. The 27-year old Williams (6’2”, 327 lbs) started nine games, accruing 31 tackles and one sack. He is considered one of the better run-defending tackles in the game.

ESPN is also confirming the Giants interest in unrestricted free agent safeties Devin McCourty (New England Patriots), Rahim Moore (Denver Broncos), and Ron Parker (Kansas City Chiefs). However, ESPN says the cost for McCourty and Moore may be higher than what the Giants are able and willing to pay. On the other hand, NJ.com is reporting that the Giants are serious players for McCourty, who is expected to receive a contract worth $9-10 million per season. The Giants apparently reached out to McCourty on Saturday.

ESPN says the Giants are likely to re-sign linebacker Mark Herzlich, tight end Daniel Fells, and fullback Henry Hynoski, while safety Antrel Rolle, linebacker Jacquian Williams, and cornerback Walter Thurmond are unlikely to re-sign. NJ.com is reporting that safety Stevie Brown, Fells, and Hynoski are likely to be re-signed and that Herzlich and linebacker Spencer Paysinger may return.

Although teams cannot officially sign players from other teams until 4:00PM ET on March 10, the negotiating period began on March 7.

Mar 082015
 
Share Button
Ron Parker, Kansas City Chiefs (November 20, 2014)

Ron Parker – © USA TODAY Sports Images

According to The New York Daily News, the New York Giants have expressed interest in unrestricted free agents safety Ron Parker (Kansas City Chiefs) and defensive end Adrian Clayborn (Tampa Bay Buccaneers). USA Today is also reporting the Giants interest in Clayborn. While teams are not allowed to officially sign players from other teams until 4:00PM ET on March 10, they can negotiate with them as of March 7.

The 27-year old Parker started 15 games for the Chiefs in 2014, finishing with 94 tackles, 1 sack, 12 pass defenses, 1 interception, and 1 forced fumble. Parker, who has experience playing corner, combines better-than-average coverage skills for a 6′, 206lb safety.

The 26-year old Clayborn, who was drafted in the 1st round of the 2011 NFL Draft by Tampa Bay, has never lived up to his draft-day expectations. He missed most of 2012 and 2014 with injuries, but did accrue 13 sacks in the two years he was healthy (2011 and 2013).

The New York Daily News is also reporting that the Giants are trying to re-sign unrestricted free agent Stevie Brown.

In the “less official” category, TheHuddleReport.com is reporting that the Giants may be interested in unrestricted free agent linebacker Brooks Reed (Houston Texans). The 28-year old Reed started 13 games in 2014 and finished with 41 tackles, 3 sacks, and 1 interception.

Rumors persist that the Giants are interested in unrestricted free agent Devin McCourty (New England Patriots), who is widely considered the best safety on the market. There has also been some internet buzz that the Giants are interested in unrestricted free agent defensive end Brandon Graham (Philadelphia Eagles).

Mar 062015
 
Share Button


Giants Expected to Pursue Devin McCourty and Rahim Moore: NJ.com is reporting that multiple sources have said the New York Giants are expected to pursue unrestricted free agent safeties Devin McCourty (New England Patriots) and Rahim Moore (Denver Broncos). BigBlueInteractive.com sources had reported the same on Thursday.

Rahim Moore, Denver Broncos (October 23, 2014)

Rahim Moore – © USA TODAY Sports Images

McCourty and Moore are widely regarded as the top two safeties on the free agent market. Meanwhile, all three of last season’s top safeties on the Giants are unrestricted free agents who may not return: Antrel Rolle, Stevie Brown, and Quintin Demps.

The 32-year old Rolle, who has been with the Giants the last five seasons, has said he has not talked contract with the Giants and he is expects to hit the open market.

“The Giants’ organization has been phenomenal to me, and I think I’ve been phenomenal to them. But right now, this is just part of the business and you wait it out,” Rolle said. “This is all business. The Giants are going to handle this as a professional business matter and I plan on the same thing. As far as giving a team a hometown discount, that’s really irrelevant at this point, because no numbers have been talked about.

“Whether I’m with the Giants or not with the Giants, I’m always going to be a Giant at heart. I’ve loved my time here. I’ve been very, very fortunate to be a part of such an organization as the New York Giants for the past five years. I wouldn’t change it for the world.

“When you’re a free agent, you think about any team. There’s no team that’s going to be out of the loop. This is strictly a business move. This is a business move for the Giants, this is a business move for myself. If there are 32 teams interested, I’m going to look at all 32 teams. Right now, it’s just waiting time. Just waiting patiently and see what happens next. As far as I’m concerned, once March 10 comes, I’m going to become a free agent.”

Articles on the New York Giants and Free Agency:

Mar 052015
 
Share Button
Chandler Fenner (48), Kansas City Chiefs (August 30, 2012)

Chandler Fenner (48) – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Tender Cornerback Chandler Fenner: The New York Giants have tendered exclusive rights free agent cornerback Chandler Fenner. By tendering him with a 1-year, $510,000 contract, Fenner is now locked into re-signing with the New York Giants. Other teams cannot offer him a contract.

Fenner was originally signed by the Kansas City Chiefs as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2012 NFL Draft. He did not make the team but the Seattle Seahawks signed him to their Practice Squad in December 2012. Fenner missed all of 2013 with a knee injury that landed him on Seattle’s Injured Reserve. The Giants signed Chandler Fenner in August 2014. He did not make the team but was signed to the Giants Practice Squad. In October, the Giants signed Fenner to the 53-man roster in October. Fenner played in 11 games for the Giants in 2014, mainly on special teams, and finished the season with seven tackles.

Both of the Giants only two exclusive rights free agents – Chandler and tight end Larry Donnell – have now been tendered.

A complete list of New York Giants free agents is available in the New York Giants 2015 Free Agency Scorecard section of the website.

Antrel Rolle on ESPN Radio: The audio of Thursday’s ESPN Radio interview with S Antrel Rolle is available at ESPN.com.

Article on TE Larry Donnell: Giants’ Larry Donnell on plane that skidded at LaGuardia Airport by Art Stapleton of The Bergen Record

Mar 052015
 
Share Button
Jerrel Jernigan, New York Giants (September 8, 2014)

Jerrel Jernigan – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Latest New York Giants Free Agent Rumors: Teams can begin negotiating with free agents on other teams on March 7 and begin signing players on other teams on March 10. Here are the latest New York Giants free agent rumors:

  • According to a BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) source, the Giants hope to have a new, long-term deal with defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul by Monday, but there are significant differences over guaranteed money.
  • According to a BBI source, the Giants and linebacker Jon Beason have agreed to a contract re-structuring that will create more cap space for the team.
  • According to a BBI source, the Giants intend to invite unrestricted free agent safeties Devin McCourty (Patriots) and Rahim Moore (Broncos) to visit.
  • According to a BBI source, the Giants rumored interest in unrestricted free agent defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh is smoke.
  • The New York Daily News is reporting that while there have been talks between the Giants and unrestricted free agent safety Antrel Rolle, the discussions have not been productive and Rolle may receive much higher contract offers from other teams on the open market. NJ.com believes Rolle will sign with another team. Rolle is denying he and the Giants have talked about a new contract.

  • The Daily News is reporting that the Giants and unrestricted free agent cornerback Walter Thurmond have talked about a new contract, but he will likely test the open market. NJ.com believes Thurmond will sign with another team.
  • The Daily News is reporting that the Giants would like to re-sign unrestricted free agent safety Stevie Brown but a source told the paper that his chance to return is “50-50″. NJ.com believes Brown will re-sign with the Giants.
  • NJ.com and The Daily News are reporting that unrestricted free agent linebacker Jacquian Williams will hit the free agent market. NJ.com says it is unlikely that the Giants will re-sign him.
  • The Daily News is reporting that the Giants are not interested in re-signing unrestricted free agent wide receiver Jerrel Jernigan. NJ.com believes Jernigan will not be re-signed.
  • The Daily News is reporting that there have been talks between the Giants and unrestricted free agent tight end Daniel Fells but nothing substantial. NJ.com believes Fells will not be re-signed.
  • The Daily News says there were talks about bringing back unrestricted free agent defensive tackle Mike Patterson before defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins accepted a pay cut. Now it is unclear if the Giants want Patterson back. NJ.com believes Patterson will not be re-signed.
  • The Daily News reports there have been talks between the Giants and unrestricted free agent linebacker Spencer Paysinger, but Paysinger is expected to hit the open market. NJ.com believes the Giants will re-sign Paysinger.
  • The Daily News is reporting that the Giants have been in talks with unrestricted free agent cornerback Chykie Brown and Brown could be re-signed soon. On the other hand, NJ.com believes Brown will not be re-signed.

NJ.com also believes the Giants will re-sign unrestricted free agents linebacker Mark Herzlich, fullback Henry Hynoski, and guard John Jerry. NJ.com does not believe the Giants will re-sign unrestricted free agents cornerback Zack Bowman, tackle James Brewer, safety Quintin Demps, running back Chris Ogbonnaya, and guard Adam Snyder.

Article on the New York Giants and Free Agency: If Rolle bolts, these 4 safeties could help Giants secondary by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Mar 042015
 
Share Button
Larry Donnell, New York Giants (December 21, 2014)

Larry Donnell – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Tender Larry Donnell: The New York Giants have tendered exclusive rights free agent tight end Larry Donnell. By tendering him with a 1-year, $585,000 contract, Donnell is now locked into re-signing with the New York Giants. Other teams cannot offer him a contract.

Donnell went from a little-known player to the team’s primary tight end in 2014, playing in all 16 games with 12 starts. Donnell finished the season with 63 catches for 623 yards and six touchdowns. His 63 receptions were tied for 9th-best among all NFL tight ends in 2014.

The only other exclusive rights free agent on the team is cornerback Chandler Fenner. It is not known yet if the Giants will tender Fenner.

A complete list of New York Giants free agents is available in the New York Giants 2015 Free Agency Scorecard section of the website.

Victor Cruz Talks About Recovery: New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz spoke about his recovery from the torn patella tendon he suffered last October on SiriusXM Radio on Wednesday.

“The injury’s going well, the rehab’s going very, very well,” Cruz said. “I’m a little more than halfway there, we’re building the strength back in my leg. The rehab’s been hard, it’s been difficult, it’s been long, it’s been grueling, but I’ve been going through it, man, and it’s definitely paying off now. The strength is coming back slowly but surely.

“I started running on this cool machine called the Alter-G, where it lets you run with a certain percentage of your body weight. And I just started doing that yesterday so it’s only a matter of time before I get out there on that field, so I’m excited about that.

“(The Giants’ medical staff does) a good job of when I’m feeling good, they still tell me things I need to hear to bring me back down to earth a little bit. So they do a good job of keeping me humble and keeping me mindful of the fact that I still have a little ways to go. These steps that I’ve taken so far have been great ones, and they always remind me to send me videos of myself eight weeks ago, ten weeks ago just to remind me how far I’ve come.

“Obviously the next couple of months are very, very important in terms of building the strength (in my knee) and continuing to mold my body back into running shape and things like that. And I just want to take these next couple of months to do that and really focus on that. Training camp is definitely the timetable. More importantly, even before training camp, I’ll be feeling almost 100 percent around May-ish, June-ish and I can really start rehabbing and strengthening it and start running routes and things like that, hopefully.”

Mar 042015
 
Share Button
Jon Beason, New York Giants (December 22, 2013)

Jon Beason was solid in the middle for New York last year – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants middle linebacker Jon Beason said on SiriusXM Radio today that he and the Giants are currently in contact about a re-structured contract that would reduce Beason’s 2015 salary cap number. Beason is in the second year of a 3-year, $17 million contract that he signed with the Giants last offseason. He is currently scheduled to receive $3.6 million in base salary, a $2.2 million roster bonus, and a $100,00 workout bonus. Counting his prorated signing bonus, Beason’s total 2015 cap number is $6,691,666.

Beason’s 2014 NFL season was basically wiped out due to a ligament tear and fracture to the sesamoid bone in his right foot during an OTA practice on June 12. He aggravated the injury in Week 2 against Arizona, missed the next three games, and aggravated the injury again in Week 7 against Dallas. After that, the doctors decided he needed season-ending surgery and Beason was placed on Injured Reserve in October. In the end, he only played and started in four games and finished the season with 11 tackles.

If the Giants cut Beason before June 1st, the team would “save” $2,858,332 against the cap with a hefty $3,833,334 in dead money.

“I want to be a Giant,” said Beason, who represents himself in contract negotitions. “They took a chance on me when other people may have thought that I was done. You want to go out and hold up your end of the bargain. When healthy I still feel I’m the best in the business and no one can keep up with me.

“We’ve been back and forth trying to come to terms. They’re doing the best they can to try to be fair under the situation and as a so-called agent I’m doing the best I can to make sure I get the opportunity to earn some of that money back. What you hate is that you get penalized for what happened in 2014 when it’s no longer in anyone’s control. But if you do go out and you play well and you make the Pro Bowl, the guys win the Super Bowl, you make the playoffs, to take less money than what you were scheduled to earn is tough because you no longer have that opportunity to hit that benchmark. That’s the nature of the game.

“I’ve had the benefit of doing my own contract and you see how the business works. Unfortunately when you are making more than the league minimum you are susceptible to taking a pay cut due to injury. A lot of that has to do with the leverage that the teams have. What I’ve learned is that you can’t take it personally when the team is going to come after you to get money back based on an injury because the other 31 teams seem like they’re on the same page. ‘Hey, we’ll low-ball you worse if you decide not to take the pay cut.’… It’s an unfortunate part of the business, but at the same time staying in the game and continuing to play is ultimately what you want. And they know that.

“As you get older in the league you realize unfortunately it’s not so much about family or bleeding Carolina blue and black or (Giants) blue and red. They want you to have that perception of what this game is. It’s truly a business and if you can’t produce at a high level often, whether it’s through injury when you can’t or you are just not playing well, there is going to be some change. When you see that so often, guys continue to move on and you’ve stayed because you’ve been a good player, you start to understand that. When you get late in your career you do the best you can to continue to do all the things that help teams win in terms of playing at a high level, but also bringing guys along and leading and trying to get that ring.”

Articles on the New York Giants and Free Agency:

Mar 042015
 
Share Button
Ndamukong Suh, Detroit Lions (January 4, 2015)

Ndamukong Suh – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants May Pursue Ndamukong Suh: According to press reports, the New York Giants may pursue unrestricted free agent defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (Detroit Lions) when the free agency negotiating period begins on March 7.

The New York Daily News is reporting that “several NFL sources believe the Giants are considering a run” at Suh, who is widely-regarded at the top unrestricted free agent on the market. ESPN is also reporting that the Giants may be one of the teams in the mix for Suh.

However, with the Giants only currently about $10-13 million under the $143 million cap, the team would have to be creative to find a way to pay for Suh. The Giants could extend/re-structure some contracts (including that of QB Eli Manning) or cut players or force them to take pay cuts. There is also the possibility that the Giants could remove the almost $15 million franchise tender on defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul.

The 28-year old Suh is one of the best defensive linemen in the NFL and the rare defensive tackle who can both play the run and rush the passer. The problem for the Giants is that many teams with a lot more cap space are expected to bid on Suh, who may be seeking a contract in the 6-year, $100 million range with $50 million in guaranteed money.

Victor Cruz Injury Update: On a Giants.com video interview, New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz said he expects to be ready to practice by the time training camp starts in late July.

“My goal is for training camp,” said Cruz. “Obviously OTAs are near and approaching, but I just want to take my time and continue rehab. But training camp is definitely the goal.”

If Cruz is able to practice at camp, he would likely be limited as he is recovering from a very serious injury, tearing the patella tendon in his right knee in October 2014. It remains to be seen if Cruz can completely regain his pre-injury physical ability.

“When a guy has a big injury like Victor had, you can’t put all your eggs in his basket,” said General Manager Jerry Reese on February 21 at the NFL Combine. “Our doctors said he looks good. I see him down in the training room working out with our trainers and doctors and he looks good. Until you get out there – his game is quickness. Until you get out there and move around, you never know how he is going to recover from that. We are hoping and praying that he comes back 100 percent and be the Victor Cruz that we know, but you can’t put 100 percent in that basket.”

Articles on the New York Giants and Free Agency:

Articles on Defensive End Jason Pierre-Paul:

Giants.com Feature on Center Weston Richburg: A video feature “Building Blocks: OL Weston Richburg” is available at Giants.com.

Mar 022015
 
Share Button
John Jerry and J.D. Walton, New York Giants (October 19, 2014)

John Jerry and J.D. Walton – © USA TODAY Sports Images

The New York Giants have released offensive lineman J.D. Walton. The 27-year old Walton started all 16 games at center for the Giants in 2014, but his play was sub par. Walton was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos, was claimed off of waivers by the Washington Redskins in December 2013, and signed with the Giants in March 2014.

Walton was set to make $2.25 million in salary in the final year of his 2-year contract and count $3.625 million against the team’s 2015 salary cap had he made the team. But cutting him, the Giants have “saved” $3 million against the cap with $625,000 in “dead” money.

The new starter at center is expected to be Weston Richburg, who started 15 games as a rookie for New York at left guard after being drafted in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Richburg’s natural position is center. The Giants also signed Canadian Football League (CFL) center Brett Jones and re-signed center/guard Dallas Reynolds in February.

Walton is the third veteran the Giants have released in the last week, including defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka and running back Peyton Hillis.

Mar 022015
 
Share Button
Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (August 28, 2014)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

As had been expected, the New York Giants have designated defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul as the team’s non-exclusive Franchise player. The deadline for designating a Franchise player was today, March 2. A Franchise tag binds an unrestricted free agent to the team for one year if certain conditions are met. Each team may only designate one player each year as that team’s Franchise player.

There are two types of Franchise tags:

  • An “exclusive” franchise player must be offered a one-year contract for an amount no less than the average of the top five salaries at the player’s position as of a date in April of the current year in which the tag will apply, or 120 percent of the player’s previous year’s salary, whichever is greater. Exclusive franchise players cannot negotiate with other teams. The player’s team has all the negotiating rights to the exclusive player.
  • A “non-exclusive” franchise player must be offered a one-year contract for an amount no less than the average of the top five salaries at the player’s position for the previous year, or 120 percent of the player’s previous year’s salary, whichever is greater. A non-exclusive franchise player may negotiate with other NFL teams, but if the player signs an offer sheet from another team, the original team has a right to match the terms of that offer, or if it does not match the offer and thus loses the player, is entitled to receive two first-round draft picks as compensation.

Pierre-Paul will now count $14.813 million against the team’s $143.4 million 2015 adjusted salary cap (or more than 10 percent of the cap), unless the Giants (1) remove the Franchise designation, (2) sign him to a longer-term deal by July 15, or (3) choose not to match another team’s tender offer (only appropriate if Pierre-Paul was designated on a non-exclusive basis).

According to The New York Daily News, a source told the paper that the Giants will continue to attempt to sign Pierre-Paul to a long-term deal, but the team is not afraid to play out the season on the $14.813 million salary.

In his fifth NFL season, the talented but inconsistent Pierre-Paul had his second-best year, starting all 16 games and finishing with 77 tackles, 12.5 sacks, six pass defenses, and three forced fumbles. Pierre-Paul played the run well most of the year and finished up strong as a pass rusher after a slow start, with nine of his sacks coming in the last five games of the season.

Teams are allowed to contact and enter into contract discussions with free agents of other teams on March 7, but cannot officially sign players from other teams until March 10.