The New York Giants‘ flexibility to sign free agents this upcoming off-season relies on general manager Joe Schoen’s ability and desire to restructure multiple contracts.
Evaluating Contract Restructuring
Of course, many are looking at Daniel Jones and his $47.1 million cap hit for the 2024 season. Many believe that the Giants will take the out in Jones’ contract, which will leave behind $22.1 million in dead money. With that being said, restructuring Jones’ deal right now would push more guarantees into the future, which is undoubtedly a problematic scenario.
Currently holding about $22 million in available cap space, the Giants shouldn’t consider restructuring Jones’ deal but rather look to Andrew Thomas and Dexter Lawrence as means of financial flexibility.
Optimizing Cap Space
As Dan Duggan of The Athletic reported on Thursday morning, the Giants can save about $14.4 million in cap space by instituting a maximum restructure on Thomas’s deal. Thomas has a roster bonus on March 17, so the Giants would need to restructure his deal before then to add $4 million extra in savings ($14.4M compared to $10.4M). Since Thomas is locked in as the team’s left tackle for the foreseeable future, this should be an easy move for Schoen to add more support this off-season in free agency.
In addition, Lawrence presents another good restructuring option. The Giants can save $11.2 million by max restructuring his deal, keeping in mind that neither of these moves would institute void years, which would add dead money to their contracts after they inevitably expire. For example, the Giants are paying Leonard Williams $10.6 million next season, a scenario they would like to avoid for other players if possible.
This would open up around $25 million, bringing the Giants’ available cap space to around $50 million, but they have to account for their draft picks this upcoming season and any improvements necessary on the roster. Schoen recently stated during a press conference that the team has needs across the board, so they will have to be smart with how they allocate salary space and draft capital.
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Giants’ Strategic Draft and Roster Moves
Of course, many will speculate about transitioning to a new quarterback, given the Giants are within range to draft one. However, they could elect to select a receiver in the first round, someone like Malik Nabers or Romeo Odunze. It’s possible they could make a move for Georgia tight end Brock Bowers, allowing them to move on from Darren Waller and create mismatches with a younger and more durable player — they would also save nearly $7 million by releasing Waller.
The options are endless with the Giants, but this off-season will decide the future of Schoen and Brian Daboll; we are certainly heading into a prove-it year.