Scott Thompson, SNY.tv | Twitter |
There are certainly more important things to think about at the moment with coronavirus concerns taking priority around the country. Other major sports leagues like the NBA, NHL, and MLB have suspended or delayed their seasons, while the NFL might be making moves that could impact important parts of the offseason.
Several NFL agents and league insiders told SNY's Ralph Vacchiano that there seems to be at least a possibility of a delay to free agency. The negotiating window is scheduled to open at 12 p.m. ET on Monday.
But, in the case that free agency does in fact start on time next week, the Giants have just under $80 million in cap space to spend. However, Vacchiano has been reporting that while fans expect GM Dave Gettleman to be a big spender, that doesn't mean he will be just because he has the funds.
Instead, he sees Gettleman grabbing mid-to-lower tier pieces to find the right players for the roster at the right price. After all, new head coach Joe Judge is looking for players who fit into his team-first culture, not necessarily the best players on the market.
So, with that in mind, here are a few bargain players the Giants could target when free agency kicks off next week:
1. EDGE Vic Beasley
After producing 15.5 sacks and six forced fumbles in 2016, the Falcons thought the eighth overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft was set to become the consistent edge rusher he was drafted to be. But it didn't turn out that way.
Beasley secured 10 total sacks in the two seasons after that Pro Bowl year, while tallying eight sacks this past season. With 42 combined tackles, two forced fumbles and 12 quarterback hits in 2019 as well, Beasley had a solid campaign after the Falcons picked up his fifth-year option.
But the free agent market may have him signing a one-year, prove-it deal to see if he can at least replicate that production, or better yet, make it better. That's where the Giants could come in. According to Spotrac, Beasley's market value at $7.3 million isn't bad for a former first-rounder that might just need a change of scenery and scheme to get back to his double-digit sack days.
2. CB Bashaud Breeland
Once again, the Giants have the money to sign someone like Byron Jones or James Bradberry, but their new contracts could be around $16 million. Instead, Gettleman might have his eyes on an NFC East veteran that just secured a Super Bowl ring with the Chiefs.
Breeland was solid for Kansas City last season, collecting two interceptions, eight passes defended, 48 tackles and two fumble recoveries with one going back for a touchdown.
It was a great bounce-back season for Breeland, who only played seven games with the Packers in 2018. And after getting $2 million last season, the Giants could hover right around that price again this season. They could use the veteran corner help with Janoris Jenkins gone.
3. S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
Antoine Bethea might still be on the roster, but none of his money for next season is guaranteed so it is basically an option year for the Giants. In turn, they will likely let him go at some point, and look for another option at free safety.
Clinton-Dix is just the type of veteran they would want to target to play with Jabrill Peppers on the back end. Playing for the Bears last season, he had two interceptions with one going back for a pick-six, five passes defended, two fumble recoveries and 78 tackles over a full 16-game season.
He turns 28 toward the end of the regular season, and playing at $3.25 million last season, the Giants could definitely land another much-needed veteran in their secondary at a good price.
4. TE Tyler Eifert
Evan Engram and Kaden Smith are the only two tight ends on the roster, and they both come with uncertainties -- injury history for Engram and inexperience for Smith.
So, while the Giants may want to draft another tight end for more depth at the position, they could look into the free agent market. And what they'll find is Eifert, who may be worth the risk.
Eifert played his first full season in 2019 after playing a total six games in 2017 and 2018 combined after some terrible injuries. But that full season last year shows that he can stay on the field. And the Giants could get him for a low price because he'll be 30 at the start of the season.
5. ILB Jon Bostic
Now Isaiah Simmons might be who the Giants are targeting with that No. 4 overall pick to be their man in the middle of the defense for years to come. But there's nothing wrong with getting some depth, especially with Ryan Connelly coming off an ACL injury.
Bostic set a career-high in tackles with the Redskins last season at 105. He had three tackles for loss, one sack and one interception as well.
The soon-to-be 29-year-old played on an $895,000 contract last season, so the Giants can certainly afford a veteran at linebacker who could be useful on special teams as well.
6. DE Carl Nassib
Nassib's stat line doesn't jump off the page, but he is a workhorse that has shown great locker room qualities as well. He could be someone whom Judge would like to have as part of that culture we discussed earlier.
In 14 games last season with the Bucs, Nassib had six sacks, eight tackles for loss, one forced fumble and 11 quarterback hits. Using someone who will be 27 years old and healthy as depth would be good at a position that needs a ton of help.
7. CB Kendall Fuller
So let's say the Giants can't land Breeland. Well why not go after his fellow Kansas City teammate from last season?
Fuller played a depth role with the Chiefs last season, playing in 11 games with four starts. But he did play a bunch in the playoffs and collected an interception in the Super Bowl. Fuller is only 25 years old and can emerge as a day one starter for the Giants depending on how training camp goes.