At the start of free agency, many believed the New York Giants could help fix their pass rush by bringing in Seahawks outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney, who came into the league with much hype but is looking for a different team after Seattle decided not to bring him back – specifically because of Clowney producing only a third of the sacks that he did in his last season in Houston.
However, Clowney’s reported price tag is likely what caused the Giants to look for other options. Clowney’s desired $20,000,000 per year would have made him the highest paid player on the team and a multi-year deal would disrupt the cap situation for the Giants for years to come. Because of that, the talk about Clowney to the Giants died down as free agency began. There’s more of an expectation of the Giants drafting an outside linebacker at this point.
Free agency has continued since the rumors died down, though, and Clowney still hasn’t been signed. Could this failure to find a new team show Clowney that he’s asking for too much, and convince him to lower his price tag for the Giants? According to the New York Post, Clowney’s opinions may indeed have changed.
Sources told The Post the Giants have expressed interest in Clowney, who started off asking for $20 million per year on a multi-year contract, but has found a surprisingly depressed market five days into free agency. He reportedly is open to a high-paying short-term deal with a chance to reenter free agency when the salary cap skyrockets next season.
The New York Post article suggests the dramatic move of rescinding the franchise tag from Leonard Williams and exchanging Williams for Clowney on a one year deal.
Would Clowney be a good prospect for the Giants to pursue? Potentially, but such a decision shouldn’t be made lightly – it’s unknown exactly how much Clowney wants right now and whether that’s enough money to warrant shutting down the idea of a deal and spending it on other players instead.
Additionally, the Giants aren’t going to be contenders this year barring a miracle, and therefore aren’t at the stage of team building when signing rental players for a high cost for one year is worth it. Even if Clowney won’t affect the cap beyond one year, it’s still money that the Giants could spend on other players who will build the team up more long term for the future.
All in all, the chances here likely depend on what kind of deal the Giants want, but regardless, the team should be careful – the Giants don’t need to be in ‘win now’ mode right now, after all.