Trade rumors: Giants’ Kevin Zeitler and Golden Tate hit the trade block

New York Giants, Golden Tate

At 1-6 on the season, the New York Giants have a big decision to make. Following their Monday night contest against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, they will have a few essential answers that will lead them down one of two paths. Either the organization elects to be sellers at the deadline or acquire players for draft capital.

There is one factor the Giants must consider — general manager Dave Gettleman’s love for giving away draft picks during lost seasons. We saw this last year when he gave up a third and fifth-round pick for Leonard Williams when the Giants were not in contention for a playoff spot any longer. This season, the Giants must hold onto their picks and commit to the rebuild and invest in youth, not acquire players who will count significant money against the cap.

However, the expectation is that both right guard Kevin Zeitler and veteran wide receiver Golden Tate will be on the trade block.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter stated regarding Zeitler and Tate:

The New York Giants are willing to trade older, high-priced veterans such as guard Kevin Zeitler and wide receiver Golden Tate. New York already traded pass-rusher Markus Golden to Arizona last month.

Both Zeitler and Tate are on significant contracts that will count against the 2021 cap. Zeitler has one year left on his deal, worth $14.5 million, which takes up 7.8% of the Giants’ salary cap. Tate, on the other hand, will count $11 million but has an out after the conclusion of the 2020 season.

If the Giants can manage to trade him, they will be in a better position as they won’t have to deal with the $4.7 million in dead money if they elect to move on from him next season.

The question is, what is his value at such a high price tag. Acquiring a seventh-round conditional pick would suffice at this point, just to get his money off the books.

Zeitler is a bit of a different situation — he’s the best offensive lineman for Big Blue, and losing him would only hurt the development of quarterback Daniel Jones. Seeing how Shane Lemieux performs at guard against Tampa will give the Giants a better idea of what they can muster without Zeitler on the starting team. Preparing for next season seems to be the ideal scenario at this point, and giving away capital in a win-now move would be a bad idea. Waiting until free agency to add players makes more sense at this point in the season.