Giants’ new star receiver can’t even ‘save’ Daniel Jones

NFL: NFL Draft, malik nabers, new york giants
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants made a significant attempt to revamp their quarterback position during the 2024 NFL Draft, offering a substantial amount of capital to move up to the third overall pick and target Drake Maye from UNC.

However, the New England Patriots were not willing to make a deal, leaving the Giants facing a tough decision: risk everything on the fourth-best quarterback available or secure one of the draft’s most talented playmakers?

Opting for the latter, the Giants chose Malik Nabers out of LSU, a decision expected to transform their offensive strategy overnight. With Saquon Barkley as their primary ground threat, Nabers’ addition is poised to shift the Giants’ offensive approach to a more pass-heavy scheme that leverages yards after the catch.

Nov 4, 2023; Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA; LSU Tigers wide receiver Malik Nabers (New York Giants) (8) celebrates his 46 yard touchdown against the Alabama Crimson Tide during the first quarter at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 4, 2023; Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA; LSU Tigers wide receiver Malik Nabers (8) celebrates his 46 yard touchdown against the Alabama Crimson Tide during the first quarter at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Impact on Daniel Jones and Giants’ Financial Implications

Nabers is likely to be a significant boost for quarterback Daniel Jones, particularly with his impressive 2023 metrics, which included 1,568 yards and 14 touchdowns, and notably, 589 yards after the catch, averaging 6.6 per reception. Jones, coming off an ACL injury, is anticipated to benefit from Nabers’ ability to turn short passes into substantial gains.

“I don’t think Nabers can save him, not without (Saquon) Barkley,” an NFL executive said, via Mike Sando of The Athletic.

“Malik should help Daniel Jones because he has ability to catch short passes and make big plays,” another executive added.

Financially, Jones is set for a $47.6 million salary cap hit in 2024, but the Giants have the option to cut ties after the season and save nearly $20 million in salary space. If retained, his cap hit would rise to $41.6 million in 2025 and $58.6 million in 2026. Given these figures, it seems likely that the Giants will move on from Jones, regardless of any improvements he might show.

Additionally, the Giants saw more value in backup Tyrod Taylor last season, and with many teams likely not needing a quarterback in the top five picks next year, General Manager Joe Schoen might have a better opportunity to move up and choose his preferred player.

While Nabers may not be the savior for Jones, his talent and ability to make plays ensure that he will be a key component of the Giants’ offense for years to come.

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