The Giants have not begun any discussions with upcoming free agents like OL Justin Pugh, OL Weston Richburg, and LB Devon Kennard, reports Adam Schefter of ESPN, citing sources.
Players now "welcome" the chance to leave the team, according to ESPN's sources, whereas in the past that was not the case.
According to the report, the Giants are maintaining the same approach they had with Odell Beckham; although the Giants could have extended his contract last off-season, his contract is not up and the team has not engaged in talks with him or the players who have expiring contracts.
Kennard and Pugh have both played 16 games just once in their respective careers. Kennard appeared in all 16 games last season, while Pugh, now in his fifth season with the Giants, played in all 16 games during his rookie season in 2013.
Richburg was placed on injured reserve earlier in November.
First of all, let's remember that the start of free agency is three months away and the Giants generally don't begin negotiating with free agents until after the season. So it's no real surprise that they haven't begun talking to free agents yet.
Also, are any of these three such a priority that that they really need to open negotiations now? It's no lock at all that they keep Kennard, for example, given that he hasn't had a major impact on the defense. Pugh and Richburg may be terrific linemen, but the Giants' offensive line has stunk this year. Plus Richburg is coming off a concussion that has cost him half the season and his recovery is a little more important now than a new contract.
As for Pugh, he has made it clear in statements he's made and Tweets that he is looking to cash in big on the free agent market. He was always expected to become a free agent in March, unless the Giants offered a deal way above market value - something they weren't likely to do for any member of their current offensive line.
There's also one more thing that makes this report kind of obvious: The Giants don't know who their GM and coach will be next week, let alone next season. It would be a bit of organizational malpractice to let Jerry Reese and Ben McAdoo decide what free agents to keep now, when the Giants can just wait a little while and let a possible new GM and coach decide later.
After all, they still have plenty of time.
And that goes double for Odell Beckham, who is recovering from a significant ankle injury. His contract isn't even up after this season. And with the "franchise tag" the Giants could control his rights for years.
So no, the Giants haven't begun any free agent discussions. And there's really no reason to think they would or should.