New York Giants: 2 alternatives if Byron Jones slips past the Giants in free agency

New York Giants, Chris Harris, James Bradberry
New York Giants, Chris Harris, James Bradberry

The top corner in free agency is none other than Dallas Cowboys’ Byron Jones. Anytime the New York Giants can steal one of Dallas’ top defensive playmakers away, it’s considered a massive success.

Jones is the top cornerback available on the market, and the Giants will have to drop a pretty penny on him if they wish to land him (likely north of $16 million per season). His statistical output doesn’t raise any eyebrows, but that’s mostly due to opposing quarterbacks staying away from his side of the field.

Considering Jones is just 27-years-old, investing big-money in him is justifiable, especially with the Giants lacking a shutdown corner on defense.

What if the New York Giants miss out on Byron Jones:

Two options intrigue me if the Giants are forced to inquire about alternative cornerbacks in free agency. Former Carolina Panther, James Bradberry, and Broncos’ Chris Harris.

Bradberry is a talented cover corner who’s versed in shadowing No. 1 receivers, but his biggest downfall is his tackling efficiency. Boasting an inflated 12.1% missed tackle rate compared to Byron Jones’ 2.1%, he’s a liability after the catch at times, but his numbers in coverage are impressive.

The 27-years-old only allowed a 59.8% completion percentage in 2019, recording three interceptions and 12 passes defended. He’s a cheaper option than Jones in free agency by a large margin, but a reliable backup plan if the Giants have no other choice.

Alternatively, they can seek assistance through Chris Harris, who’s entering the latter portion of his career at 31-years-old. Signing Harris to a two-year deal would maximize his value until he ultimately succumbs to age degradation. I like this move more-so than Bradberry given his experience and veteran mentality – he might cost the Giants around $13-14 million per season. Still, a two-year deal isn’t detrimental to their future cap holdings.

Other options include Logan Ryan, Bradley Roby, and Jimmy Smith as boundary-corners. The Giants need to pursue Jones aggressively, but the two names listed above represent decent alternatives.