The New York Giants need to prioritize the pass rush this offseason, whether it be through the NFL Draft or free agency. Luckily, there are plenty of options to consider in the open market. Now it depends on GM Dave Gettleman and his willingness to open his checkbook to inject more quality into the Giants’ defensive front.
However, two different scenarios could unfold for the Giants, as they represent the best situations available after a majority of the top pass rushers will be franchise tagged.
The two best options for the New York Giants:
1.) Jadeveon Clowney
Of course, Clowney is an ideal wish-list candidate, considering his ability to shut down an entire side on the defense. He can set the edge with solid run-stopping capabilities and also rush the passer an elite level, despite never having breached double-digit sacks in his career.
Last season, Clowney recorded just 3.0 sacks and 13 QB hits, but he was double-teamed on a majority of plays, essentially taking two offensive linemen out of the equation. The Giants will need to be confident that their No.2 pass-rusher is capable of winning 1v1 battles in the trenches. Also, factoring the Giants’ strong interior defense into the equation should justify a strong pass-rush presence, especially if they re-sign Leonard Williams to a multi-year deal.
2.) Kyle Van Noy and Markus Golden
This avenue is a bit more uncertain, considering Van Noy is an aging veteran, and Golden’s lone year of production after two years of consecutive injuries doesn’t scream consistency. However, this option is cheaper and lands two quality players who can serve multiple purposes.
Van Noy is a capable pass rusher but also stout against the run, and we know the type of production Golden can produce (10.0 sacks in 2019). I imagine they would likely garner around $25 million altogether while Clowney is projected to re-set the edge rusher market at $22 million per season. The Giants currently allocates just $29 million toward their entire defense.