The Super Bowl is over and the offseason has begun, meaning the Giants can start reshaping their roster in the hopes they can make a run at Super Bowl LII. And even though they went 11-5 and returned to the playoffs last season, there's a lot of work to be done.
So here are some of the biggest questions the Giants must answer this offseason. We'll check back in each week to see how the Giants are doing, whether any of the questions have been answered, and whether any have changed:
1.) How are they going to fix their offensive line?
Considering how their poor offense dragged them down this season, this is the Giants' most important question. They have a franchise quarterback in Eli Manning and one of the biggest weapons in the game in Odell Beckham, Jr.. If Manning could get better protection and a few holes could be open in the running game, maybe the offense could live up to the expectations.
They do seem to have a couple of pieces in place -- Justin Pugh at left guard and Weston Richburg at center. Right tackle Marshall Newhouse and right guard John Jerry are free agents and the Giants should be able to do better in at least one spot. And then there's Ereck Flowers, their struggling left tackle entering his third season. The Giants may consider moving him to another spot on the line.
2.) Can they find a reliable, play-making tight end?
For years they believed in their ability to develop their own, from low-round picks to undrafted rookies to overlooked veteran free agents. But the last two years that philosophy blew up in their faces. Now they're stuck with the unreliable Will Tye and the untested Jerrell Adams, with Larry Donnell headed towards unrestricted free agency.
The Giants have to do better here, whether it's a free agent (like former Giants tight end Martellus Bennett) or someone from the early rounds of the draft. A good, play-making tight end can be a reliable weapon, especially for a quarterback under pressure. Sounds like something Manning definitely needs.
3.) Is Jason Pierre-Paul coming back, and who replaces him if he doesn't?
JPP is headed for free agency and he wants to get paid, and there's a good chance his price will go beyond what the Giants are willing to spend. They could still hit him with the franchise tag, but that price -- expected to be more than $17 million -- figures to be prohibitively high.
The Giants will surely try, though, given the importance of a pass rush and how good a team he made with Olivier Vernon. The real problem is that they don't have a ready-made replacement if he signs elsewhere. They're going to have to replace him with a free agent signing of their own or an early pick in the draft.
This is a premium position, though, and they can't -- and likely won't -- be cheap here. The price of JPP or of replacing JPP will be high either way.
4.) Are they content with Paul Perkins as their running back next season?
They liked what the rookie did in limited action and they seem committed to naming him the starter in 2017. The question is really about how much work they're willing to give him and how much support he needs. Rashad Jennings could be a salary cap casualty (or a candidate for a pay cut). But presumably the Giants will want to bring someone in to split carries with Perkins, who only carried the ball 112 times last season. The Giants have long been advocates of the need for two running backs to split the workload. They also believe this position is a young man's spot.
5.) Who will be their No. 3 receiver?
Their hearts may say Victor Cruz, but increasingly it looks like their heads say otherwise. Even if he accepts another massive pay cut, there may not be a position for the 30-year-old. Sterling Shepard seems to be the new slot receiver and Cruz was only marginally effective on the outside. Ideally the Giants will fill his position with something they've lacked for years -- a truly big receiver, someone with 6-4-ish size.
They've actually been looking for that for years -- remember they were drooling over the 6-5 Mike Evans in the 2014 draft before they ended up with Beckham instead. If there's no free agent that fits the bill, this is a need that could be filled in the first 2-3 rounds of the draft.