Out With the Old And In With...Who?
The New York Giants have been cutting some serious weight since the end of the season, and who can blame them? The weight they've carried for the past two seasons has barely been enough to keep them buoying along at .500 (16-16 since 2011), and the formula they've been throwing on the field is obviously far beyond expired. Instead of having Eli Manning drive this car further and further into bad neighborhoods, they've decided to do the sensible thing and stop and ask for directions. By hiring new offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo, hopefully the offense will be able to get the car turned around and back on the road in no time. And all of that ineffective weight? Well, they've begun cutting it slowly but surely.
Last week, the Giants voided the contracts of both Corey Webster and Brandon Myers — two mostly unproductive members of a largely unproductive 2013 squad. Neither of these roster moves comes as much of a surprise, as most of us expected Webster and Myers to be free agents this offseason, and rightfully so. Webster followed up a nightmarish 2012 season with a 2013 season that saw him on the sidelines for most of it, battling injury after injury. As for Myers, well, he might as well have been wearing an invisibility cloak over his jersey last season, because he was only slightly better than useless for most of the year.
And so the Giants' free agent list for 2014 grows longer, with players like Chris Snee and David Baas likely to be added to it, as well as WR Hakeem Nicks, LB Jon Beason and DT Linval Joseph. So who will the Giants find to replace all of these guys? Well, if everything shakes out like many expect it to, the Giants should head into the 2014 free agency period with around $20 million in cap room assuming they do in fact release both Snee and Baas. They would then have enough money to potentially land a few quality free agents of their own to fill some of the holes on the offense and defense.
The team has already discussed possibly bringing back Beason (who quickly emerged as a new fan-favorite on defense last season) with another short-term deal, but aside from him, there doesn't seem to be much chatter about bringing back any of the other free agents set to be released into the wild this year. While it's still too early to speculate about possible free agents the Giants are targeting to replace these players, we'll begin to learn more as the draft draws nearer and teams begin to shape their rosters for the 2014 season.
One thing is for certain: the Giants need additional help at the cornerback position in 2014 — an issue that went largely unaddressed last season — and they also need an effective tight end who can pick up some of the slack in the passing game if one of the offense's key playmakers in recent years (Nicks) does indeed depart … and he most likely will. The importance of the tight end position in the Giants’ offense has been brought up time and time again over the past few seasons, and one big name that has been floated around in connection with the Giants is Packers TE Jermichael Finley, who coming off of a serious neck injury that ended his 2013 season and almost threatened to end his career.