Brandon Jacobs appears headed to the Jets or some other team after being released by the Giants last Friday. The team currently has Ahmad Bradshaw as their top ballcarrier, with little used DJ Ware and Da’Rel Scott as the primary backups.
It makes sense for the Giants to bring in a low-cost solution to replace him. There are several veterans that would fit the bill, but would they actually sign for less than the Giants had offered Jacobs (approx. less than $2 million)?
The name people have been bandying about is San Diego’s Mike Tolbert. Others to consider include: the Patriots’ BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Peyton Hillis of Cleveland and former Giant Ryan Grant, who was traded away to Green Bay in 2007.
We’re still trying to figure out how much under the cap the Giants are right now. Apparently, we’re not alone (see article below). This seems to be the task du jour of every Giants beat writer and blogger with a heartbeat.
The Giants will enter free agency tomorrow with a quick agenda to sign some of thei own UFAs back. Not sure if they plan on bringing back Aaron Ross or if they can afford to re-sign Dave Tollefson.
Look for Jerry Reese to continue to fine tune the cap by restructuring a few more players, contracts.
Here is a quick Q&A on the topic of Free Agency courtesy of the NFL:
As suspected, with one day remaining before teams can begin negotiating with UFAs, the NFL stated the 2012 salary cap will be $120.6 million, a slight increase ($ 225k) over last season.
We reported the Giants are approximately $8 million under that number after redoing Eli’s contract and releasing Brandon Jacobs. According to the website spotrac.com, the Giants have 43 players under contracts totaling $112.3 million.
Some newspapers and websites are reporting different numbers. From Bart Hubbuch of the Post:
“The Giants should be about $2 million under the cap after reworking Eli Manning’s contract and releasing Brandon Jacobs on Friday, though general manager Jerry Reese is expected to redo more deals to create further room.”
From SNY Insider Ralph Vacchiano of the Daily News:
“…the Giants have cleared about $12 million in cap space by restructuring Eli Manning’s contract ($6.8 million) and cutting Brandon Jacobs ($5 million). They also gave a “franchise” tender to punter Steve Weatherford (about $2.6 million) and signed three players to small deals (Domenik Hixon, Jake Ballard, Bruce Johnson, for about $1.7 million total). If my math is right (and it rarely is) that puts them anywhere from right at the cap to $3 or 4 million under.”
Who to believe? I would like to think us and spotrak.com because we put the Giants further under the cap than the others do. The main point to keep in mind here is, they are under the cap before the 4pm Tuesday deadline – something many didn’t think they could do…
It would make for a nice story. TE Dallas Clark playing catch for years with Peyton Manning in Indianapolis, then moving on to New York to do the same with Eli.
Clark was cut by the Colts this week and will be available to negotiate with any team beginning this Tuesday. In normal circumstances, a team experiencing a dearth at TE (such as the Giants) would be chomping at the bit to sign him.
These aren’t normal circumstances, though. First off, the Giants don’t have much maneuverability under the cap and if they did, they wouldn’t dedicate much money to a player coming off back-to-back injury-shortened seasons.
Add in the fact that Clark is an average blocker and his value reduces further. The Giants need their TEs to be able to block. More specifically, any TE they bring in must be a strong blocker. Clark isn’t.
Clark does have his upsides. He is a YAC (yards after catch) threat and the Giants love that in a receiver. If he can still get in the seams and crack defenses, the Giants would consider him, but once his price rises, they would have to drop out of the bidding.
As per Ryan Bonini of KFFL.com: “Clark is just two seasons removed from a 100-catch, 1,106-yard and 10-touchdown season. At 6-foot-3 and 252 pounds, he has solid size and could be an immediate upgrade to plenty of offenses around the NFL.”
That is the problem. Clark is “two seasons” removed from those stats. How much of an upgrade is he from Bear Pascoe, and what would they do if Jake Ballard is ready by Week 7? The Giants won’t pay much to find out, you can bet on that.
The truth is, the Giants need to add some healthy bodies this spring. They have re-signed several of their own players coming off season-ending injuries thus far and plan to ink several more over the next month.
Both TEs Jake Ballard and Travis Beckum will not be ready for the season. The player the Giants choose to defray their loss has to come in with a clean bill of health. Clark just isn’t that guy.
Brandon Jacobs’ release by the Giants was not a shock to us here at GFB, but it has set off a discussion of where the veteran RB will play next. The 29-year-old Jacobs played seven years for the Blue, leaving as the 4th leading rusher in Giant history (4849 yds) and the franchise leader in rushing TDs (56).
The upside for any team that signs Jacobs is his passion and potential to scare the bejeezus out of defense with his size (6’4″, 265lbs). The downside is, as we all know, is his inconsistent effort to utilize that size in short yardage situations.
Nevertheless, there will be many suitors vying for Jacobs’ services. The Jets will certainly be one of them. They seem to have a few other issues to address this offseason, but the Jets will surely take a look and Jacobs will consider – and even take – their offer to keep his family in the area.
The other three NFC East teams will all take a look, too. Dallas, Philadelphia and Washington would all love to turn Jacobs around and point him at the Giants after years of having to deal with him from the other side of the line of scrimmage.
Other spots could be Miami (who are the favorite to sign Peyton Manning), Tampa Bay (who’s offense is being run by Giants’ QB coach Mike Sullivan) and New England, because Bill Belichick leaves no stone unturned when it comes to useful veterans that hit the open market.
The gang at NBCSports discuss the likely market interest for Jacobs’ service
The Giants have been in the NFL spotlight since last December, capturing the imagination of football fan everywhere with an incredible Super Bowl championship run. Players such as Victor Cruz, Jason Pierre-Paul and Hakeem Nicks have become household names practically overnight.
The leader of the Giants – QB Eli Manning – has been one of the constants for the Giants – and the NFL -over the past five years, a span in which the club has won two Super Bowls with Eli being named MVP in both games. Many NFL teams are seeing that you can’t win the Super Bowl unless you have an elite QB under center.
The past decade has proven that. The league’s upper crust of the QBs (Eli, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees and Eli’s brother, Peyton) have all led their teams to Super Bowl titles at least once.
Now Peyton is on the market, and a frenzy not seen in years, is about to ensue. Teams are lining up make their cases known…
HOF journalist Ray Didinger of CSNPhilly has been through a few rodeos in his time, but nothing can can compare to this. He has a long list of landing spots for Peyton, including (of course) with his beloved Eagles:
Franchise player designations were announced Monday for the 2012 NFL free agency signing period, which begins at 4:00 p.m. ET on March 13.
21 of the NFL’s 32 teams exercised their option to use the franchise “tag” on a player from their roster who was bound for free agency.
Franchise Player Definitions
A club can designate one “franchise” player or one “transition” player among its veteran free agents.
The salary offer by a player’s club determines whether the franchise player designation is exclusive or non-exclusive.
An “exclusive” franchise player – not free to sign with another club – is offered the greater of (i) the average of the top five salaries at the player’s position for the current year as of the end of the Restricted Free Agent Signing Period on April 20; or (ii) the amount of the Required Tender for a non-exclusive franchise player, as explained below.
The methodology for calculating the Required Tender for a non-exclusive franchise player has changed. Formerly, such players were tendered a one year NFL Player Contract for the average of the five largest Prior Year Salaries for players at the position at which the Franchise Player played the most games during the prior League Year, or 120% of his Prior Year Salary, whichever is greater.
We asked some of our readers to sit in Giants’ GM Jerry Reese’s chair for a day.
Mickster:CUT: Jacobs, Sintim, Ware, maybe Baas or Rolle TRADE: Osi RESTRUCTURE: Baas, Rolle, Eli, Canty
RE-SIGN: Weatherford, TT24, Bernard, Carr, Hixon or DThomas, Goff or Blackburn, maybe Tryon or Bruce Johnson SIGN: TE – John Carlson, a back-up DE on a one-year ‘prove-it’ deal like Trevor Scott, or maybe Ben Patrick (remember him?)
DRAFT: At #32 – OT/G – C Glenn, WR – RRandle, or MLB – DHightower Early – CB, DE, and OT/G, WR if not taken in Rd-1 Mid – S, RB, WR, C/G (if Baas is let go) Late – TE, another RB, DT, LB
LET GO TO FA: Manningham, Ross, DMartin, SWitherspoon, WBlackmon, Kennedy, SAndrews, MClayton, Tolleson (will want multi-year, will find it elsewhere)
Not4:I’d add to that list signing Nicks to a long term deal now, before he gets too close to his walk year. I know he has one year left, but he is a crucial, tough-to-replace high end WR. (Would not waste the $$ on Manningham, who I like, and may well develop more, but has not shown enough consistently to warrant the Giant’s spending money to sign him to the big contract someone else will give him)
Jimbo: TIGHT END… THE Great QBs in the game have Great TEs on the team, but a few or all of them don’t have the type of Wide Receivers that The Giants have. Just imagine the offense with a great Tight End also. If not a TE then I believe we need a LB…
Ross Tucker and former Giant star WR Amani Toomer of NBC Sports discuss this year’s WR free agent class. One of the topics? Where Mario Manningham stacks up against the other free agent wideouts this March.
Is he a No. 1 receiver? Any team that has done their homework knows that he isn’t. Tucker points out Manningham’s inconsistent career thus far including the injuries and mental lapses that have held him back from reaching the next level. Both he an Amani feel Mario will have wait behind the likes of Marques Colston, Pierre Garcon, Brandon Lloyd and others.
They are right. Mario is not a No. 1 receiver, but as our colleague at ESPN, Colin Cowherd, always says we are ‘prisoners of the moment’ in America and Mario’s recent success may garner him a nice deal. The reality is that some team will overpay.
That team will not be the New York Giants. Manningham is the No. 3 receiver on this club right now – why would they pay him No. 1 money…? The answer is, they won’t…..