Mar 292022
 
Brian Daboll, New York Giants (March 1, 2022)

Brian Daboll – © USA TODAY Sports

BRIAN DABOLL ADDRESSES THE MEDIA…
New York Giants Head Coach Brian Daboll spoke to the media on Tuesday at the NFL Annual Meeting in Palm Beach, Florida.

Daboll has been trying to connect with as many of his players as he can via FaceTime or those who are individually working out or rehabbing from injuries at the team’s facility. However, with the start of the team’s voluntary offseason strength training and conditioning program on Monday, April 4th, Daboll will be presented with his first opportunity to address much of the team in person. The coaches will then also be able to begin to teach the players the new schemes on offense, defense, and special teams.

“I probably haven’t hit everybody, to be honest with you,” said Daboll. “I’ve talked to a few people just to introduce myself. Again, there’s a long time to learn football and things like that and we’ll get to that. Even this first week, one of the things I talked to the coaches about was let’s get to know these players. We haven’t really been around them. Let’s ask them about their families, what they like. It’s important to get to know one another.

“You’re going to be in a competitive situation and you’re going to face a lot of tough times in this league and you can lean on people when you have relationships with them, because you’re building trust because there’s going to be tough times. I’ve said it a million times and I’ve gone through them in my career I’d say quite a bit where I’ve lost or had some really good times. You’re sharing them with the guys that you’re in the building with each day and you’re working hard to achieve a goal and fighting through some things that don’t go your way. I think that’s what brings people closer together.”

Like General Manager Joe Schoen did yesterday, Daboll talked about the misleading media reports that the Giants were actively trying to trade running back Saquon Barkley. Daboll used this as an example of how he tries to communicate with his players.

“When things come out, I try to stay on top of it,” Daboll said. “Look, I have kids that are 22 and 21 years old and I’m sure you all have kids that are whatever ages. They’re people first. You can say whatever you want. You can say, ‘Hey, people are just writing stuff or reporting stuff.’ I think it’s important to show a little empathy, too, to the guys in the situations that they’re in. I know it’s a tough business, but I think it’s a people business, too. I think the more upfront and the more transparent you can be and even when things are being said, which look, at this time of year there’s a million things being said. Some are probably true. Some are probably not true. I understand that. I like being transparent with these guys and letting them know where I stand and if I do hear something that comes across the wave, I’ll say yeah, this isn’t the case or just hang tight. I think showing empathy goes a long way. Probably something 15, 10 years ago I wasn’t good at either.

“I’ve had some good running backs in my career and after 22 years you have some decent ones. Saquon is a lead guy. I’ve watched all his tape all the way back to his rookie year where he had (91) catches. He’s a versatile player. He seems like a good young man. I’m excited to work with him. I think he’s excited to be here. I can’t wait to get to Monday here.”

Daboll on coaching the entire team, not just the offense: “I’ll spend time with the defense. I’ll spend time with the offense, kicking game, special teams guys, evaluating a lot of draft prospects. I’d say the last week has been spent a lot on draft work, because most of the coaches have been out on the road. I’ve learned that when you’re in this position, there are a lot of people that want to come in the room and talk about whatever and that’s really important. But there’s times where I can just hunker down and start watching players, that’s been a valuable week and a half for me just grinding out on college guys.”

Daboll on the new offense and who will be calling the plays: “We’ve been working through just installing our playbook and our plays and I think there’s been a lot of really good opinions. The big thing is the players come back on the 4th, this Monday. We’ve been hiring a staff, evaluating our players, evaluating free agents, evaluating college players. A lot of the coaches have been out on the road with pro days, workouts and that’s really what we’ve done. There’s been some players rehabbing in the building. We’ve spent a lot of time on those things. We’re kind of integrating our offense along with (Offensive Coordinator) Mike (Kafka’s) offense that he used in Kansas City and putting things together, but until guys get back and we can actually start doing things, so we’re a little ways from that stuff. When I know (who will call the plays), I’ll let you guys know.”

Daboll on quarterback Daniel Jones, who suffered a season-ending neck injury last year: (He) “should be ready to go” (on Monday)… I think Daniel – I’ve said this before – he’s got good athleticism. He’s made some really good throws. I’m sure there’s plays that he wants back, just like everybody. I think going into it right now with Monday, we’ve kind of got it set the way we want it set. We’re forging ahead and teaching it accordingly and we have confidence in the players that we have.

“I don’t make excuses with everybody, starting with me, and I think you’ve got to really go back and dive into the cause of the turnovers. Some are decision-making turnovers where we can fix or try to fix. Some are receivers fell down, there’s a tipped ball and some are really great plays by the defense. In terms of the interceptions and then in terms of the fumbles of why we’re fumbling and how we’re fumbling it, you do drill work to try to improve that. Again, to me, the most important thing come Monday is a fresh start for everybody.

“I’ve coached a lot of players at a lot of different positions. For a lot of different players that I’ve coached, some can’t play in this league because he’s too inaccurate. Some can’t play because he turns the ball over. I think that the most important thing is put him in your system, coach him, develop a relationship with him, try to get the best out of him. You learn from the past just like we all learn from our past, but you have your focus on the future and what you’re doing that day to improve and that’s all I’m asking those guys to do.

“We’ll see (if we want him to run the ball). He’s athletic. He’s big. He’s strong. I know he’s had some injuries. I think there’s always a balancing act but at the end of the day, you’ve got to try to use your players the best way you can use them to try to win a game. Sometimes it might not start early in the season like that, but as you figure out what you are and what you need to do, you can evolve to that, it’s kind of like Josh (Allen). How many quarterback runs did we really design? Probably more a little bit later in the year when it was crunch time. But again, that’s knowing the player too where the guy wants the ball in his hands in the most critical moments to do that. Again, we’ll find out with Daniel. I think he’s got a really good skillset in that regard. How much of it we’ll do? You never know.”

Daboll on wide receiver Sterling Shepard: “I know Sterling restructured (his contract). The short time that I got to spend with him, he’s just a class act. He’s the longest-tenured Giant, but I think he’s got a good skillset for some of the things that I can envision him doing. He’s in there working in the weight room with the rehab guys. He’s been a really good person and Joe (Schoen) worked out a deal with him to bring him back and restructured his contract and we’re happy to have him.”

Daboll on the Giants’ free agent signings: “Time will tell. The guys that we signed, I like those guys. We were afforded what we were afforded with in terms of the salary cap, but guys like (Jon) Feliciano and (Mark) Glowinski, I think we’ve added some pieces that’ll compete on the offensive line. Obviously, we’ve added a backup quarterback, a couple guys on defense we think will give us some depth. I think the big thing is we’re still about five months out from playing a game. Nobody panics, everybody takes it one day at a time and try to add as many pieces to make this as competitive as you can make it and keep building your team really through the season. Team-building and adding players, there’s still a long way to go on that.”

Daboll on the low expectations for this team: “I think that the biggest thing we all can do, starting with me and trickling down to the rest of the people in the organization – obviously, Joe’s got to focus on the future and we all do, but really focus on the day and try to win each day. Things are always going to be said in our league. It’s the most popular sport. It’s a great fan base with great support. All you guys have your job to do, and I understand that, but what we can do is just to focus on what we have to do to get better each day. I learned a long time ago, when things are going good, try not to listen. When things are going bad, try not to listen. I respect the people that are on the outside that love our game and report on our game and all we can control is what we can do that day and that’s kind of the mentality that I’m going to take with myself, with the staff and with the rest of the players.”

Daboll on quarterback Tyrod Taylor: “I think that’s important. At Buffalo, they did that last year when we acquired Mitch (Trubisky). Again, you try to develop a scheme and a system for your starter, and you hope that the backup quarterback isn’t too far off that in terms of skillset or ability or things like that. We’ve done it before, but I think it’s probably a little bit better if you can mirror it a little bit.”

Daboll on cutting safety Logan Ryan: “There are decisions that are made every offseason that are tough decisions. I’ve known Logan for a little bit of time and at the end of the day we thought it was the right thing for us to do and I wish Logan great success at Tampa. He’s a good player, but I think that there are some tough decisions that are made every year. There are tough decisions that will need to be made next week, a month from now, three months from now. I’ve learned in this league that that happens every year with good players or players that you go into a new system or a new coach, that’s the nature of our business.”

Daboll on wide receiver Kenny Golladay: “He’s a big-bodied guy that makes contested catches, so he’s like all the other guys. I went back and watched the Detroit seasons and he had some good seasons, just like when I went back and watched KT (Kadarius Toney) at Florida. You try to do as much work as you can on these guys before they get there to see what have they been successful at and figure out a way to use them in things they’ve excelled at. You’ve got to see them do the things that you’re going to ask them to do in the offense. There’s plays that we’re going through right now, heck, if those guys want to turn inside on this route, let’s figure it out when they get here and ask them. Stef (Stefon Diggs), we had different routes that I’ve run before and it didn’t quite look like the ones that I ran 15 years ago, but I let him be him and do the things that he can do to be successful and use his talents.”

Daboll on whether it would be difficult to pass over offensive players for defense in the upcoming Draft: “It’s a fair question. I’m trying my best. I’m new to this, right? I’m two months on the job. I certainly don’t have the answers. Again, you’ve said it. I started five years in my career of coaching defensive football. I’ve coached offense but it’s always cool to look at a defensive player and evaluate him as, ‘OK, I’m not really worried about – if we play against this guy that gets drafted, we’re going to go at his ass,’ or ‘this guy is pretty tough, he’s a good player,’ whether he’s setting the edge. That’s been a cool thing. I’ve really enjoyed that. In terms of would I rather draft an offensive guy or a defensive guy, I’d rather draft the best player wherever that fits. We have a lot of needs, so we’re going to pick the best guy we can pick in either of those spots or one of those spots or wherever it works out.”

PATRIOTS SIGN JABRILL PEPPERS…
New York Giants unrestricted free agent safety Jabrill Peppers has signed a 1-year contract with the New England Patriots.

The Giants placed Jabrill Peppers on Injured Reserve in late October 2021 after he suffered a ruptured ACL and high ankle sprain on his right leg in Week 7. In 2021, Peppers played in six games with five starts (58 percent of all defensive snaps in those games), missing another game with a hamstring injury. He finished with 30 tackles, one sack, and one pass defense. Overall, Peppers’ play declined in 2021 and he saw his playing time decrease as a result.

In 2020, Peppers played in 15 games with 14 starts (88 percent of all defensive snaps), missing one game with an ankle injury. He finished the season with 91 tackles, 19 tackles for losses, 2.5 sacks, nine quarterback hits, 11 pass defenses, one interception, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery.

Peppers was originally drafted in the 1st round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns. He was traded to the Giants as part of the Odell Beckham deal in March 2019. He started 11 games for the Giants in 2019 before being placed on Injured Reserve with a transverse process fracture in his back.

For an overview of all Giants’ free agent signings, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Losses and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

Mar 282022
 
Joe Schoen, New York Giants (March 1, 2022)

Joe Schoen – © USA TODAY Sports

JOE SCHOEN ADDRESSES THE MEDIA…
New York Giants General Manager Joe Schoen spoke to the media on Monday at the NFL Annual Meeting in Palm Beach, Florida. In discussing the upcoming NFL Draft, Schoen was asked about potentially trading down from the #5 or #7 overall selections.

“We haven’t discussed that,” said Schoen. “Really, honestly, right now, we’re trying to find, ‘Hey, who are seven players we like?’ I mentioned this at the (NFL) Combine, if we find seven players that we like as players, as people, that’ll be good for the organization, I’ll sleep good at night and then we’ll get into that, ‘Maybe we need 10 guys, maybe we need 11, maybe we need 13,’ if we decide to move back, depending on where we are.

“The roster continues to evolve. We signed a guy today in (offensive lineman) Max Garcia. We’ll be open to listening, but again, it’s got to make sense to us. If there’s two players that we really like as people and as players, then again, I’m absolutely fine staying there, taking a guy that we like, and I’ll sleep good at night.”

Schoen was also asked if the Giants will emphasize need over value. “We have enough needs on the roster that I think you can go take the best player available,” replied Schoen.

Schoen also acknowledge that the team’s salary cap restraints are an issue. “It’s a daunting task when you start adding in the draft picks and then trying to add replacement cost in-season and then where we were when I got here, that’s a daunting task,” Schoen said. “It’s hard to operate. Again, it’s always tough to sit on your hands in free agency when you have holes on the team that you’d like to fill. I knew what I was getting into. (Co-owners) John (Mara), Steve (Tisch), they understand what we’re getting into, and (Head Coach) Brian Daboll understood what he was getting into.

“Three of the things that were important to me were starting guard, so we’ve gotten (Mark) Glowinski and (Jon) Feliciano. (Feliciano has) played center and guard in his career. I think his best position right now in his career is at center. Obviously, kind of having a quarterback of the offensive line and knows the system and familiarity with him. He’s smart, tough and dependable and then I think the backup quarterback (Tyrod Taylor) – again, not looking too deep into that. Daniel (Jones) has had, there have been some injuries over his career, so to protect the team if we’re having a good season then someone who can go in there and win games for the organization. I thought that was important. We’ll continue to build depth as you’ve seen with some of the VSB signings (one-year contracts that give the team a reduced salary cap hit) that we’ve done over the last couple of weeks. You’ve got guys that have started games and played meaningful football. The more depth and competition we can create with the resources that we have, I think that’s important. I think we’ve been able to accomplish that.

“It was a priority (to get a back-up quarterback),” said Schoen. “I go back to – I can’t remember if it was my opening press conference or I said it at the Combine to you guys, backup quarterback would always be a priority of mine. Where I was last year, we got a little bit lucky at the value that we were able to get at what we thought was a good player at that value. I go back to my time in Miami, Ryan Tannehill gets hurt, tears his ACL, Matt Moore came in, kept the season alive and we went to the playoffs. We lost to Pittsburgh, but again, I think that’s an important position to have where someone can come in and steady the ship and win a few ballgames for you and it doesn’t completely decimate your season.

“I like Tyrod a lot. I was in Buffalo with him that first year when we broke the 17-year drought in terms of the playoffs there. Morning workout guy, he was always the first one in. He’s always in there. First one in, last one to leave. Smart, he’s a leader. He’s still athletic. He can run. Dabs and (Offensive Coordinator Mike) Kafka, the stuff they want to do on offense that Daniel can also do, you don’t have to change up your offense if he has to go in the game. Similar type skillsets and they can run the same offensive scheme and that was kind of some of the guys we targeted, it was guys that you don’t have to totally change your scheme in order to run your offense, so that was important.

“We’d like to be in better salary cap health next year for sure versus having to move on from people or cut guys or do any type of restructures. I’d rather not be in that situation.”

Schoen on the media reporting that the team is looking to trade running back Saquon Barkley: “That was taken a little bit out of context at the Combine. I haven’t called one team on Saquon Barkley, OK? Everybody ran with that from the Combine, I said I would listen if people called on any player, so it would be irresponsible if I didn’t. That doesn’t mean I’m going to do every deal, so I haven’t called one team on Saquon Barkley. I’ve gotten calls about a few of our players and he’s one where a couple teams have reached out, but again, I’m not shopping Saquon Barkley.

“It’d be irresponsible if a team calls – I think 31 other GMs would say the same thing – if somebody is going to call and offer you something ridiculous, you’re going to listen It doesn’t mean you’re going to do any deal or you’re going to say ‘yes’ to it. We’ve got an offensive head coach (Brian Daboll). He likes to have as many weapons and toys as he can.

“I like Saquon. We’re at a little bit of an advantage here, the players are coming in in two weeks, so we’re going to get around all these guys. Again, the guy was the number two pick in the draft for a reason. He’s got a lot of talent and I’m looking forward to working with him.”

Schoen on the belief that the team needs to cut or trade cornerback James Bradberry for salary-cap reasons: “He’s currently on the roster. He’s a good corner who was a Pro Bowler two years ago (2020), and he’s 28-years old and can still play at a high level and he’s on our roster… People have called about certain players and people have value. Again, like I said, he’s 28-years old. He’s two years removed from a Pro Bowl season. He’s still a high caliber starting corner… If it’s the right offer and it makes sense for the New York Giants, then I’ve got to consider (it)… a last resort is converting and restructuring contracts, so there’s ways we can get creative if we need to.”

Schoen on whether the team will pick up the 5th-year option on quarterback Daniel Jones: “We have until May 2 to decide that. Like I said at the Combine, we’re going to still continue to develop that and consider that. With guys coming in in two weeks (for the start of the offseason program), it’s a real advantage. We’ll get to be around guys in the building for four weeks or three weeks before the draft and have a veteran minicamp right before the draft. Again, we’ll continue to have those conversations as we move forward.”

Schoen on whether defensive lineman Dexter Lawerence will have his contract guaranteed for 2023: “Same deal. I’m still trying to get familiarized with our defensive staff and how they’re going to utilize players. We’ve had some really productive conversations. I haven’t worked with (Defensive Coordinator) Wink (Martindale). I haven’t been in a 3-4 since probably my time down in Miami. Just trying to figure out what traits they’re looking for in each player. Dexter’s a really good player and we’ll obviously have extensive conversations on what we’re going to do there.”

Schoen on the decision to cut safety Logan Ryan: “Best decision for the New York Giants. We thought it was best talking with the new staff that that was the best. I wish Logan nothing but the best.”

Schoen on the injury status of linebacker Blake Martinez (torn ACL) and wide receiver Sterling Shepard (ruptured Achilles’ tendon): “Both those guys are in there every day. Both working hard. I see them at lunch every day. Two guys I really enjoy being around, leaders, busting their butt. I think Blake could be back before Shep, just because of the timeline of the injury, but I’ve been really impressed with both of them and their work ethic and the time that they’re putting in. Hopefully by August, (they’ll be on the field). Again, we’re not going to rush them along. We don’t play until September. Ease those guys along. Again, they’re two professionals that understand their bodies, leadership, they understand their process. The goal is to have them on the field in August.”

GIANTS RE-SIGN SANDRO PLATZGUMMER…
The Giants have re-signed unrestricted free agent running back Sandro Platzgummer. The 6’0”, 198-pound Platzgummer was originally allocated to the Giants in April 2020 as part of the NFL’s International Player Pathway Program, which also allowed him to remain on the team’s Practice Squad in 2020 and 2021 without counting towards the Practice Squad limit. Platzgummer played for the Swarco Raiders Tirol of the Austrian Football League. He has yet to play in a regular-season game.

Mar 282022
 
Max Garcia, Arizona Cardinals (October 6, 2021)

Max Garcia – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS SIGN MAX GARCIA…
The New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agent guard/center Max Garcia (Arizona Cardinals) to a 1-year contract.

The 30-year old, 6’4”, 309-pound Garcia was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. The Cardinals signed him as an unrestricted free agent in March 2019. Garcia has played in 93 regular-season games with 52 starts. In 2021, he started 11-of-15 games for the Cardinals. Garcia is a versatile performer with starts at left guard, right guard, and center.

For an overview of all Giants’ free agent signings, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Signings and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

ARIZONA CARDINALS SIGN WILL HERNANDEZ…
The Arizona Cardinals have signed New York Giants unrestricted free agent offensive guard Will Hernandez.

In his fourth year with the Giants, despite a promising rookie season and starting 56 of the 62 games he has played in, Hernandez did not progress as a player. He continued to consistently struggle in pass protection, especially on against twists and stunts. Hernandez was also flagged six times in 2021, with four false starts.

The Giants selected Hernandez in the 2nd round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He was named named to Pro Football Writers of America’s All-Rookie Team. After starting every game in his first two years in the league at left guard in 2018 and 2019, Hernandez lost his starting position to Shane Lemieux in 2020 after the seventh game of the season. Hernandez also missed two games in early November that season due to COVID-19. The Giants shifted him to right guard in 2021, and he started all 17 games at that position.

For an overview of all Giants’ free agent signings, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Losses and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

JOHN MARA ADDRESSES THE PRESS…
New York Giants team President/CEO John Mara spoke to the media on Sunday at the NFL Annual Meeting in Palm Beach, Florida.

“I don’t think it’s a very high bar to improve over last year, but we’ve got some draft capital,” said Mara. “I think we’ve signed some pretty good players so far. I really like the staff that (Head Coach) Brian (Daboll) has put together. I do think we’ll be a much better team. But I know those words are shallow right now until we actually start playing. Hopefully, we’ll have a better injury situation than we’ve had. We’ve taken a hard look at our practices and what we need to change, and I expect us and hope that we’ll be a lot healthier next year.”

Mara talked about the team’s approach to sign cheaper free agents. “Sometimes, modest is good,” Mara said. “We’ve been in situations where we’ve spent pretty aggressively; it hasn’t always worked out. Sometimes getting guys who are a little less expensive but fulfill important roles for you is the way to go and that is where we are right now. We don’t have a choice, but I think we’ll be in a very good cap situation next year.”

Mara on quarterback Daniel Jones: “I think he’s shown enough when we had the right pieces around him and when we’ve been relatively healthy, he’s shown enough talent to make us believe that we can win with him, I’ve been quoted over and over again about all the problems that we’ve caused for him by the lack of continuity and the lack of stability. We’ve got to help him become a good player, become a better player and hopefully, we’ll do that this year. The head coach and the general manager have both been very impressed with him so far. He’s got everything that you want. We just have to, number one, keep him healthy and, number two, put the right pieces around him.”

On if a decision has been made on picking up Jones’ fifth year option by the May 2nd deadline: “That’s not a decision we’ve made as of yet. That’s a discussion we’ll be having over the next month or so.”

On cutting safety Logan Ryan: “It was a decision that Brian (Daboll) and (General Manager) Joe (Schoen) made and decided that they wanted to move on, so I wasn’t going to block it. I was sorry to see him go. I thought he was a good player. I thought he did some great things for us in the community, but again, the head coach and the general manager make a football decision and I’m not going to block it.”

On the possibility of having to cut cornerback James Bradberry in order to create cap space: “That would hurt, because he’s been a very good player and he has been the consummate professional for us. But the cap situation is what it is, so we’d have to consider all options there.”

On if running back Saquon Barkley will be traded: “We’re not shopping Saquon, but Joe’s the general manager and if he and the head coach want to make a personnel decision and they have a conviction about it, I’m not going to interfere with it. That’s not something that we’re actively looking to do, let’s put it that way… I’m certainly conscious of (Barkley’s market value as a “star”), but I don’t think it’s a major factor. At the end of the day, put the best possible team on the field and build for the future. I like him. He’s been a great representative for us. I still think he’s a really good player. I think he could potentially have a very big year this year, but at the end of the day, the head coach and the general manager make those decisions.”

Mar 252022
 
Richie James, San Francisco 49ers (August 22, 2021) 4

Richie James – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS SIGN RICHIE JAMES…
The New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agent wide receiver Richie James (San Francisco 49ers) to a 1-year contract.

The 26-year old, 5’9”, 185-pound James was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the 49ers. In his first three years in San Francisco, James played in 40 regular-season games with 10 starts, catching 38 passes for 689 yards and three touchdowns. He also returned 47 kickoffs for 1,081 yards (23 yards per return) and one touchdown and 51 punts for 373 yards (7.3 yards per return). James missed all of the 2021 season with a knee injury.

For an overview of all Giants’ free agent signings, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Signings and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

J.R. REED SIGNS WITH BRONCOS…
New York Giants safety J.R. Reed has signed a 1-year contract with the Denver Broncos. Reed was eligible to be tendered as an exclusive rights free agent by the Giants, but the team chose not to, making him an unrestricted free agent.

The Giants signed Reed off of the Practice Squad of the Los Angeles Rams in late October 2021. He played in eight games with New York with no starts (10 percent of defensive snaps in those games) and was credited with 13 tackles. He saw extensive time in two mid-season games, playing poorly in one and better in the next.

The 6’1”, 194-pound Reed was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Jacksonville Jaguars after the 2020 NFL Draft. The Jaguars waived him in September 2020. Reed was then signed by the Rams, where he spent time on both their Practice Squad and 53-man roster. He has played in a total of 16 games, with no starts.

Mar 232022
 
Justin Ellis, Baltimore Ravens (September 13, 2021)

Justin Ellis – © USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agent nose tackle Justin Ellis (Baltimore Ravens) to a 1-year contract.

The 31-year old, 6’2”, 350-pound Ellis was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders. From 2014 to 2018, Ellis played in 66 regular-season games with 42 starts for the Raiders. Oakland put him on season-ending Injured Reserve in August 2019 with a knee injury before waiving him later that year. The Ravens then signed him in November 2019. In Baltimore in 2019-2021, Ellis played in 34 regular-season games with eight starts. In 2021, he played in all 17 games with fives starts (35 percent of defensive snaps) and was credited with only seven tackles. Ellis is strictly a run defender. He only has 0.5 sacks and four quarterback hits in his career.

Mar 212022
 
Matt Breida, Buffalo Bills (November 21, 2021)

Matt Breida – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS SIGN MATT BREIDA AND JIHAD WARD…
The New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agents running back Matt Breida (Buffalo Bills) and defensive end Jihad Ward (Jacksonville Jaguars).

The 27-year old, 5’10”, 195-pound Breida was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the San Francisco 49ers after the 2017 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the 49ers (2017-2020), Miami Dolphins (2020), and Buffalo Bills (2021). Breida has played in 64 regular season games with 19 starts, rushing the ball 466 times for 2,281 yards (4.9 yards per carry) and seven touchdowns. He also has caught 83 passes 729 yards and six touchdowns. In 2021 with the Bills, Breida played in nine games, only carrying the ball 26 times for 125 yards and one touchdown. He also caught seven passes for 72 yards and two touchdown. Breida has fumbled the ball seven times in his career.

The 27-year, 6’5”, 290-pound Ward was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders. He has spent time with the Raiders (2016-2017), Dallas Cowboys (2018), Indianapolis Colts (2018-2019), Baltimore Ravens (2019-2020), and Jaguars (2021). Ward has played in 68 regular-season games with 15 starts, accruing 91 tackles, 12 tackles for losses, 10 sacks, and three fumble recoveries. In 2021 with the Jaguars, Ward played in all 17 games with one start and finished the year with 32 tackles, three tackles for losses, and two sacks.

For an overview of the team’s free agent activity, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Signings and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

FALCONS SIGN LORENZO CARTER…
The Atlanta Falcons have signed New York Giants unrestricted free agent linebacker Lorenzo Carter to a 1-year contract.

A year after rupturing his Achilles’ tendon in 2020, Carter surprisingly bounced back quickly in 2021 and played possibly the best football of his career down the stretch of the season. Carter started all 14 games that he played in (66 percent of defensive snaps), missing three mid-season games with an ankle injury. He finished with career-high stats in tackles (44) and sacks (5) while also being credited with six tackles for losses, eight quarterback hits, one interception, two forced fumbles, and one fumble recovery.

The Giants drafted Carter in the 3rd round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He played in 15 games with two starts as a rookie, and then started 12-of-15 games in 2019. Carter missed 11 games in 2020 due to the Achilles’ injury.

For an overview of the team’s free agent activity, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Losses and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

GIANTS RE-STRUCTURE GRAHAM GANO’S CONTRACT…
ESPN is reporting that the Giants and place kicker Graham Gano have agreed to a contract re-structure. The Giants converted $2.63 million of Gano’s salary into a bonus, creating $1.753 million in cap space. A void year was also added to his contract, which was set to expire after the 2023 season.

MEDIA SESSIONS WITH PLAYERS…
The media sessions with following recently signed players are available at Giants.com:

Mar 182022
 
Jamil Douglas, Buffalo Bills (August 28, 2021)

Jamil Douglas – © USA TODAY Sports

MEDIA SESSION WITH JAMIL DOUGLAS…
The New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agent offensive lineman Jamil Douglas to a 1-year contract.

The 30-year old, 6’4”, 310-pound Douglas was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins. He has spent time with the Dolphins (2015-2016), New England Patriots (2016-2017),  Atlanta Falcons (2017), Indianapolis Colts (2018), Tennessee Titans (2018-2020), Buffalo Bills (2021), and Washington Football Team (2021). Douglas has played in 50 regular-season games with 11 starts, all of the latter coming in 2015 and 2019. Versatile, Douglas has experience at both guard and center.

For an overview of the team’s free agent activity, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Signings and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

MEDIA SESSION WITH RICKY SEALS-JONES…
The video of the media session with tight end Ricky Seals-Jones is available on YouTube.

Mar 172022
 
Logan Ryan, New York Giants (October 24, 2021)

Logan Ryan – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS CUT LOGAN RYAN…
The New York Giants have terminated the contract of safety Logan Ryan, who had two years left on his 3-year, $31 million contract (he initially signed a 1-year contract with the Giants in 2020). Ryan was not designated a post-June 1st cut and it appears that his release only created $775,000 in cap savings with $11.45 million in dead money.

The Athletic is reporting that $5.5 million of $9.25 million salary for 2022 was fully guaranteed. Another $3 million would have become fully guaranteed if Ryan was on the roster on Friday. So the Giants needed to cut him before tomorrow for any savings.

In his second season with the team, Logan Ryan remained an important presence in the secondary in 2021, especially after the loss of Jabrill Peppers early in the season. Ryan started 15 games at strong safety (98 percent of all defensive snaps in those games), missing two mid-season games with COVID. He finished the season with 105 tackles (second on the team), one sack, three quarterback hits, eight pass defenses, two forced fumbles, and one fumble recovery.

The Giants signed Ryan in late August 2020. He ended up being a very important, jack-of-all-trades defensive back who was used at both safety and corner. Ryan also quickly became a team leader and solid presence in the locker room. In all, Ryan played in all 16 games with 15 starts in 2020.

The 5’11”, 195-pound Ryan was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. He has spent time with the Patriots (2013-2016) and Titans (2017-2019), playing 109 regular-season games with 85 starts. Ryan has spent most of his career at corner, but now prefers to play safety. While Ryan has history of being an instinctive, play-maker, he also still misses too many tackles and can be exposed in coverage at times.

GIANTS RE-SIGN KOREY CUNNINGHAM…
The Giants have re-signed unrestricted free agent offensive tackle Korey Cunningham.

Cunningham was signed to the Practice Squad in early September 2021 and the 53-man roster in October. He ended up playing in 12 games with no starts. His only significant playing time came in Week 16 at right tackle, filling in for the injured Matt Peart. Cunningham played 88 percent of the snaps in that game, but struggled as both a pass protector and run blocker.

The 6’6”, 311-pound Cunningham was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals. He was traded to the New England Patriots in August 2019. The Patriots cut Cunningham in late August 2021. In four NFL seasons, Cunningham has played in 30 regular-season games, with six starts, all with the Cardinals in 2018. He has experience at both tackle positions.

MEDIA SESSION WITH TYROD TAYLOR…
The video of the media session with quarterback Tyrod Taylor is available on YouTube.

Mar 172022
 
Ricky Seals-Jones, Washington Football Team (September 16, 2021)

Ricky Seals-Jones – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS SIGN RICKY SEALS-JONES…
The New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agent tight end Ricky Seals-Jones (Washington Commanders).

The 27-year old, 6’5”, 243-pound Seals-Jones was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by Arizona Cardinals after the 2017 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Cardinals (2017-2018), Cleveland Browns (2019), Kansas City Chiefs (2020), and Washington Football Team (2021). Seals-Jones has played in 54 regular-season games with 15 starts, accruing 90 catches for 1,044 yards, and 10 touchdowns. Last year for Washington, Jones started six games and caught 30 passes for 271 yards and two touchdowns. A former wide receiver, Seals-Jones is more of an H-Back than in-line tight end.

For an overview of the team’s free agent activity, see the 2022 New York Giants Free Agent Signings and New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

Mar 162022
 
Jarren Williams, New York Giants (January 2, 2022)

Jarren Williams – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS RE-SIGN JARREN WILLIAMS AND CASEY KREITER…
The Giants have re-signed exclusive rights free agent cornerback Jarren Williams and unrestricted free agent long snapper Casey Kreiter.

The Giants signed Williams to the Practice Squad in late September 2021 and the 53-man roster in December. He ended up playing in six games with two starts (49 percent of snaps in those games) and finished the season with 17 tackles and one pass defense. In the two games that he started, Williams impressed in one and struggled in the other. Williams was originally signed by the Arizona Cardinals as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft. The Giants signed signed Williams in early August 2020 after he was waived by the Cardinals. He spent most of 2020 on the Giants’ Practice Squad, but did play in two games exclusively on special teams.

The Giants signed long snapper Kreiter s an unrestricted free agent from the Denver Broncos in April 2020. The 6’1”, 250-pound Kreiter was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Dallas Cowboys after the 2014 NFL Draft. After spending two camps with the Cowboys, Kreiter made the Denver Broncos in 2016. He made the Pro Bowl for his performance in 2018.

GIANTS DO NOT TENDER JAKE FROMM AND J.R. REED…
The Giants have not tendered quarterback Jake Fromm and safety J.R. Reed, both of whom were set to be an exclusive rights free agents on Wednesday. This means the team is unlikely to want to re-sign either.

The Giants signed Fromm to the 53-man roster from the Practice Squad of the Buffalo Bills in late November 2021. Due to injuries to the other quarterbacks and the ineffective play of Mike Glennon, Fromm unbelievably was thrust into the starting line-up for two games and coming off the bench in a third. The results were not good, with Fromm completing 45 percent of his passes for 210 yards, one touchdown, and three interceptions. He finished with a terrible 38.9 quarterback rating and was 0-2 as a starter. The 6’2”, 215-pound Fromm was originally drafted by the Bills in the 5th round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Giants signed Reed off the Practice Squad of the Los Angeles Rams in late October 2021. He played in eight games with New York with no starts (10 percent of defensive snaps in those games) and was credited with 13 tackles. He saw extensive time in two mid-season games, playing poorly in one and better in the next. The 6’1”, 194-pound Reed was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Jacksonville Jaguars after the 2020 NFL Draft. The Jaguars waived him in September 2020. Reed was then signed by the Rams, where he spent time on both their Practice Squad and 53-man roster. He has played in a total of 16 games, with no starts.

For an overall of the Giants’ free agency activity, see the New York Giants 2022 Free Agency Scorecard section of the website.

GIANTS OFFICIAL 2022 NFL DRAFT ORDER…
After the awarding of 39 compensatory picks to various NFL teams, the 2022 NFL Draft order has been officially established. (The Giants did not receive any compensatory picks for their 2021 free agent losses). The Giants have nine picks, as follows:

  • 1st Round (5, 5th overall)
  • 1st Round (7, 7th overall)
  • 2nd Round (4, 36th overall)
  • 3rd Round (3, 67th overall)
  • 3rd Round (17, 81st overall) (from Miami)
  • 4th Round (7, 112th overall) (from Chicago)
  • 5th Round (4, 147th overall)
  • 5th Round (30, 173rd overall) (from Baltimore)
  • 6th Round (3, 182nd)

MEDIA SESSION WITH JON FELICIANO…
The video of the media session with center/guard Jon Feliciano is available on YouTube.

Feliciano confirmed that the Giants will use him at center.

“I’ve been in a lot of people’s ears for a lot of years trying to get into the center position,” Feliciano said. “I honestly think it’s my best position, and I’m just really excited to finally get to show what I’ve got… It was definitely – I wanted to play center. There were other teams that were talking, and I believe in myself, and I believe that the center position is where I’ll be best. Thankfully, (offensive line coach) Bobby (Johnson) and (head coach Brian) Daboll agreed and we got it to work out.

“Going back to my Oakland days, I had a guy, Rodney Hudson, who’s a top-tier, one-two center, the last 10 years. I got to pick his brain and learn from him, and (former Raiders’ offensive line coach) Mike Tice, and (his assistant) Tim Holt, I took those four years of being a rotational guy, a backup guy, to learn a position that I didn’t play in college (Miami). In college, I played both tackles and then left guard.

“So, from those first four years I got to learn center and I really fell in love with it. Just the responsibility that is on your hands to come in every week and everything is basically on you. You’ve got to know the defense. You’ve got to make all the calls for the guys around you. I take a lot of pride in knowing that stuff.”