Opinion: Jamal Adams will remain a New York Jet

New York Jets, Jamal Adams

Today, the New York Daily News dropped a rare exclusive with a player on the outs with the New York Jets’ organization. The entire premise of landing an interview with a player who holds any level of animosity towards his respective team is few and far between.

Despite that, Manish Mehta detailed his sit down with Jamal Adams in his latest article. Manish did an eloquent job on the piece, yet, the answers given by Adams did not live up to that same precedent. For that very reason, Jamal Adams will be a New York Jet at the start of the 2020 season.

Why Adams Will Stay In New York

Judging by the answers, it’s evident (as if it wasn’t already) Jamal wants out. Most players resort to public outcry after outcry in order to tarnish the organization and become a distraction in order to get off the team. Jamal is in desperation mode. Unlike when the Jaguars ownership broke down and resorted to public rebuttal of Yannick Ngakoue, or when the Steelers organization and their players began to turn against Lev Bell, the Jets have not budged.

Jamal and his camp are nervous, so this exclusive is an evident last-ditch effort to force a reaction or a trade out of the Jets. Yet, they are still yet to budge. Jamal’s dismay did nothing to get them to talk. So now, Jamal is taking shots at the basic organizational integrity. Within the piece, he takes shots at Adam Gase. He calls him the wrong leader for the organization, takes aim at his reluctance to face the team or make adjustments (which is apparent).  He also fires off against Joe Douglas for giving off mixed signals.

So, with all that said, why is Jamal going to remain a Jet? The Jets control his rights. As much as Jamal wants out and is trying everything and anything to get off the team, ultimately, it’s the Jets decision. Joe Douglas doesn’t want him gone. He made it clear to the team that the initial goal was to put pieces around Jamal and resign him next year. Then, the plans got altered by financial shifts and the COVID-19 pandemic. From Jamal’s perspective, plans should not have changed, and since his demands have not been met yet, in terms of more “dawgs” or a new deal.

The disconnect is, no doubt, massive. Despite that, Jamal is making a concession. He WILL attend training camp. Why this is important is because it’s evident that he is doing this because he is nearing his end of moves. Jamal wants out, and he will do whatever it takes to get out, even temporarily, please the organization. Ultimately, Jamal is tied to the Jets for the long haul with his rookie deal, then potential franchise tags. No matter what Jamal wants people to believe, he can’t get out of his deal. Jamal can kick and scream, but Joe Douglas will be the one who either seals his fate and buys him a ticket out of New York or makes him a “Jet for Life.” I don’t see either happening, and the only middle road is the “Prez” continuing his term during an election year.

Could the New York Giants package Nate Solder into a trade with the Jacksonville Jaguars?

New York Giants, Nate Solder

The New York Giants have been connected to the Jaguars in a potential trade involving Yannick Ngakoue.

The rumor-mill is undoubtedly flowing with two weeks until the 2020 NFL Draft, and the New York Giants are in a position of leverage as quarterback-needy teams contemplate moving up in the draft to secure their player of choice. The Jags could be interested in moving up to the 4th overall pick to select a quarterback, considering they traded Nick Foles to the Chicago Bears this offseason.

With Gardner Minshew the Jags’ only passer, there’s a high probability they could be in the market for a first-round talent to compete with the outspoken 2019 draft pick. That’s where the connection with the Giants at No. 4 stems from. However, the Jags also need a left tackle, which represents an opportunity for GM Dave Gettleman to package Nate Solder into the deal.

Solder’s contract isn’t too bad, as the Giants soaked up most of the dead-cap over the last two seasons (about $60 million in dead cap). The next two years represent a fraction of that total ($16 million in 2020 and $6.5 million in 2021). Solder does count $19.5 million and $20.5 million against the cap over the next two seasons.

In this scenario, the Giants would gain the 9th overall pick and a star pass rusher in Yannick Ngakoue.

With the 9th overall selection, the Giants would be open to grabbing a top three tackle prospect to solidify the left tackle spot and adding another second-round pick (No. 42 swapped for No. 99 in trade) to allocate toward a position of need. Ultimately, the Giants have more holes than top draft picks, which is why this theoretical scenario is appealing.

However, the counter-argument would be — why would the Jags want Solder?

Realistically, they’re rebuilding too, and they are missing a left tackle. While Solder isn’t the best LT in the league, he’s serviceable and has proven in the past he can play at a decent level. In his first year with Big Blue, he didn’t allow a single sack in the second half the year. If you factor in the problematic situation with his child and the exhaustion stemming from that, you can come to the conclusion that Solder might have just been a father in distress.

Imagine if your child had cancer and needed treatment, your attention at work might dwindle. It’s also likely that Gettleman retains Solder and allows him to cover Daniel Jones’s blind-side. Solder staying cemented at left tackle is tricky, though, as drafting a lineman becomes less attractive. However, teams often plug-in tackles on the right side and then move them over to left — it’s not an unprecedented move in the NFL.

With reports indicating that the Giants are intrigued by Tristan Wirfs from Iowa, it’s possible they draft him and plug him in on the right side for 2020.

New York Giants: A Scenario To Improve The Offensive Line And Pass Rush

New York Giants, Yannick Ngakoue

The New York Giants have multiple gaps to fill this season and only one first round draft pick – it’s easy, therefore, to get into debates about what position would help the team the most. The line is the most pressing need on offense, after the Giants drafted Daniel Jones last year but had a hard time with keeping quality players in front of him to protect him. On the other hand, the defense still needs a real pass rush.

Many believe that the Giants need to pick between these two needs and that if they spend their first round pick on an offensive lineman, they won’t be able to improve the defense or vice versa. And this take seems reasonable enough. There’s only so many marquee players to choose from, and a lot of them will be gone in the top fifteen picks. However, there is a scenario where the Giants can get another piece to help their team and still acquire a player in the top ten with their draft pick.

That’s the scenario laid out in the most recent CBS Mock Draft, which has the Giants trading their pick to the quarterback needy Jaguars for pass rusher Yannick Ngakoue and moving down to the ninth spot to select Mekhi Becton, an offensive tackle that has been mocked to the Giants since the end of the season.

In four years in the league, Ngakoue has never had less than 8 sacks and is one of the more consistent pass rushers available right now, either in the draft or in a trade. He’s been mentioned as a name connected to the Giants for a while now, but a deal would likely wait until draft night.

Becton, on the other hand, is one of the top three offensive line prospects in the draft and would potentially provide the immediate step up in protection for Daniel Jones that the Giants are looking for.

Is this a good deal for the Giants? It looks like one, as it addresses a couple of needs in one draft. However, it remains to be seen if Jacksonville would accept such a deal. The Giants, after all, look like the winners if this prediction really did happen.

New York Giants Interested In Kyle Van Noy

The NFL’s 2020 free agency period will begin this month. The New York Giants are set to have over $80 million to spend if they choose to. There is plenty of elite talent weeks away from hitting the open market that would fill positions of need for New York’s team.

The Giants are reportedly interested in a few big-name pass-rushers. The interest was reportedly mutual between the Giants and Yannick Ngakoue, prior to Yannick receiving the franchise tag (according to Jordan Raanan of ESPN). The Giants also have a mutual interest with Markus Golden in terms of a contract extension (Sports Illustrated). New York even has a mutual interest with big-name edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney.

There is another name to add to the Giants’ list of potential edge rusher targets in 2020: Kyle Van Noy.

The Giants’ Interest

According to Ralph Vacchiano of SNY, the Giants have an interest in signing New England’s free-agent pass-rusher Kyle Van Noy. This would likely only hold true if New York was unable to strike a deal with Jadeveon Clowney. But Van Noy would be an excellent value signing for the Giants.

Vacchiano estimates that Van Noy’s contract could “land in the $12 million per year range,” which is about half of what it would cost to sign Jadeveon Clowney.

In New England’s 2019 defense, Kyle Van Noy was moved to edge rusher. In this role, Van Noy totaled 60 pressures, 6.5 sacks, and a pressure rate of 13.8%, which ranked 26th best at his position (Pro Football Focus).

Though he is a great pass-rusher, Kyle Van Noy is an elite run defender. He earned an 85.4 run-defense grade on Pro Football Focus, an elite grade that ranked top-five at his position. He also totaled 56 combined tackles and 7 tackles for loss in 2019 as an edge rusher. As an off-ball linebacker in 2018, Kyle Van Noy racked up 92 combined tackles.

For only $12 million per year, Kyle Van Noy would be an excellent signing compared to the rest of the players on the market and their respective price tags.

Van Noy’s Possible Interest

Kyle Van Noy has spent his last three and a half seasons playing for the New England Patriots. The seven-year NFL veteran had a good relationship with Joe Judge, the Giants’ new head coach. Judge was with New England since 2012. 

When Van Noy learned of Judge’s promotion as New York’s new head coach, he was excited for his former special teams coordinator. While appearing on “The Pat McAfee Show” this offseason, Kyle described Joe Judge as a “ball of energy” and a “really, really good coach” that loves football. At the end of his discussion about Joe Judge, Kyle Van Noy exclaimed: “Go, Giants!”

Of course, Van Noy is probably just showing support for his former coach. But, being that he is an impending free agent, Kyle Van Noy could have been hinting at a desire to reunite with Joe Judge in New York. If that is what Van Noy wants, the Giants should be on board and should pursue him in free agency.

Should The New York Giants Trade For Yannick Ngakoue?

New York Giants, Yannick Ngakoue

The NFL offseason is in full effect and free agency begins in under two weeks. Teams have already begun making trades and tagging key players. One of the top free-agent edge rushers was tagged this week- Yannick Ngakoue.

Ngakoue tweeted this week, stating “I no longer have interest in signing a long term contract in Jacksonville.” This came shortly after news had broke that Jacksonville will be placing their franchise tag on the stud pass-rusher.

Prior to receiving the franchise tag, Yannick Ngakoue and the New York Giants had “mutual interest,” according to a report by Matt Lombardo of nj.com. Acquiring Ngakoue will be an arduous task now that he has been tagged. But if the Giants want to, they could try to trade for Yannick Ngakoue.

What Would The Price Be?

The trade price for Yannick Ngakoue is likely to be comparable to the Frank Clark deal from last offseason. In that trade, the Chiefs traded a 2019 first and third-round pick to the Seahawks for Frank Clark, a 2019 third-round pick, and a 2020 second-round pick.

If the Giants want to trade for Ngakoue, they will have to pay a similar price. According to Jordan Raanan of ESPN, one NFL executive put the price for Jaguars EDGE Yannick Ngakoue at a first-round pick or two second-round picks. There is no way the Giants will give up the fourth overall pick. It is also highly unlikely the Giants would be willing to give up a second-round pick either.

This high price tag basically takes the Giants out of the race for Yannick Ngakoue unless they can get really creative with a trade offer. This is disappointing, especially when considering the fact that Ngakoue “wants to be a Giant,” according to Jodan Raanan.

Is Ngakoue Worth The Price?

On top of whatever a team will give up trading for Ngakoue, they will have to pay him. The pass-rusher has an estimated market value of $17.1 million, according to Spotrac. With all this taken into consideration, is Yannick Ngakoue worth the price?

Yannick Ngakoue is one of the most talented, young pass-rushers in the NFL. Through 4 seasons, Ngakoue has totaled 37.5 sacks. He has not had a single season in his career with less than 8 sacks, hitting that number in all 4 seasons including a career-high 12 sacks in 2017. Additionally, Ngakoue has totaled 122 combined tackles over 4 years.

Ngakoue might not be a game-breaking pass-rusher like Von Miller or Khalil Mack, but he is a highly productive player regardless. He would be a major upgrade for the Giants if they were to somehow acquire him. However, it is hard to envision this team with holes all over the roster and limited draft capital making a deal with Jacksonville.

New York Giants: Yannick Ngakoue continues to suggest desire to play in New York

New York Giants, Yannick Ngakoue

On Monday morning, Yannick Ngaokue, free-agent pass rusher, was franchise tagged by the Jacksonville Jaguars after expressing his desire to take his talents elsewhere in free agency. Yannick has continuously indicated his interest in the New York Giants, and while it has been subtle, it has been apparent.

Ngakoue is one of the best pass-rusher to hit the open market this offseason, and the Jags are planning to tag and trade him, so they can gain some draft capital for his services. The Giants may pursue him despite the constrain Jacksonville placed on him. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Giants offered a third-rounder in 2021 for the right to sign him to a multi-year deal.

At just 24-years-old, Yannick is in his physical prime and preparing to earn a pretty penny in free agency. If the Giants are, in fact, interested in his services, he will likely cost upwards of $19 million per season.

However, he’s well worth the money, considering his production over the past four seasons — 37.5 sacks, 122 combined tackles, 85 QB hits, and 14 forced fumbles.

CHECK OUT THE FIRESIDE GIANTS PODCAST FOR GREAT COMMENTARY! 

The New York Giants desperately need to add a top pass rusher:

With Markus Golden hitting free agency, the Giants don’t have any support at the position. GM Dave Gettleman even stated that it’s obvious they need to address the position in free agency or through the draft. This is a scenario where the Giants don’t need just one pass-rusher, they need two.

The ideal situation would include the Giants landing a premium option in FA and waiting until the draft to see if Chase Young falls into their laps. If now, they can always head back to the market to allocate more money towards a lesser target. However, linebacker Zack Baun, out of Wisconsin, racked up 12.5 sacks last year, showing off incredible speed and strength. He’s another intriguing defender for the Giants, who need to bolster the entire unit 5x over.

Yannick, though, continues to show his interest in the Giants via Social Media.

Should the New York Giants stay far away from Yannick Ngakoue?

New York Giants, Yannick Ngakoue

Yes, the New York Giants indeed have ample cap-space to sign talented free agent players, but breaking the bank for them should curate some hesitancy.

Pass-rushers are some of the most expensive players in the game, and they’re becoming more so with every passing season. Good but not great players can now earn upwards of $20 million dollars, similar to former Jacksonville Jaguar, Yannick Ngakoue, who’s seeking $22 million in free agency.

From ESPN:

All he has done since the Jaguars took him in the third round in 2016 is rack up 37.5 sacks (second on the franchise’s all-time list) and 14 forced fumbles. The tag would be for approximately $19.3 million, which is doable because the Jaguars are expected to release several players in the coming weeks to clear about $35 million ($46 million if CB A.J. Bouye is released). Ngakoue wants a long-term deal and is seeking about $22 million annually. He also indicated late last season that he would be unlikely to show up until the Aug. 11 reporting deadline for players under contract if he had to play on the franchise tag.

Ngakoue has proven he’s a talented player on the defensive line, having breached double-digit sacks just once in four years but never falling below 8.0 total sacks. However, he’s posted three seasons with four fumbles forced or more, indicating he’s a talented tackler and can play against the run.

Again, is $22 million worth it for the Giants? Considering he would become the highest-paid pass-rusher in the league, beyond the $21 million Demarcus Lawrence landed in 2019?

The New York Giants can land a young stud with room to grow:

At 24-years-old, you can argue that Ngakoue is in the midst of his prime and deserves the money and then some. Signing him to a four-year deal worth $84 million ($21 million per season), with elevated guarantees, would likely get the deal done, but it’s a risk. Pass-rushers are hard to come by in today’s NFL, and locking down one of the rising stars in the NFL is a good first step for the Giants.

Big Blue currently has $61 million in cap space with an expected $24 million jump to $85 million after cuts. Signing Yannick would leave them with about $62-64 million in remaining cap-space, in which they can sign Byron Jones and Devin McCourty for a total of $27 million (hypothetically), bringing them down to $37 million. Dave Gettleman stated that the Giants must hold $20 million going into the season, so that leaves $17 million to address other positions. However, I believe the right tackle spot should be filled in the draft considering the price-tag Jack Conklin will command in free agency.

 

How can the New York Giants upgrade their secondary?

New York Jets, Logan Ryan, Tennessee Titans

The New York Giants pass defense was well documented as being one of the worst in the league last season.  The Giants secondary gave up more than 4,200 passing yards on the season (28th overall) and 7.1 yards per pass attempt (29th overall).  New York must upgrade their pass defense, but according to ESPN’s Jordan Raanan, those upgrades will not come from spending big in the cornerback market in free agency.

How will the New York Giants improve their pass defense?

Much of the headaches in the pass defense could be attributed to the lack of experience in the secondary.  Only three of the cornerbacks that saw impactful snap counts for the Giants defense last season had any playing time before last season.  Only one, Janoris Jenkins, started more than ten games heading into 2019. 

Many believe that the New York Giants may look at the top of the 2020 NFL Draft to help upgrade the cornerback position, but is adding more inexperience a good move?  Maybe. Ohio State’s Jeffrey Okudah seems to have the talent. However, adding a veteran presence to replace Janoris Jenkins looks to be the better move for New York.

If the rumors are true and the Giants won’t spend big on the cornerback market in free agency, who does that leave?  It most certainly rules out Byron Jones, assuming he doesn’t get an extension from Dallas. Jones will be one of the most highly sought free agents on the market and will likely get paid as such.  

Chris Harris, Jr., Logan Ryan, Bradley Roby, and Jimmy Smith are all free agents that made at or above $10 million per year on average.  However, is $10 million the bar for the Giants? Also, was their performance or age going to impact their number? I wouldn’t rule these names out like I would with Jones, but they may be just outside where New York is willing to go for the position.

So, who could the Giants target in free agency?

Former first-round selection for the Minnesota Vikings, Trae Waynes found himself not having an excellent coverage year in 2019.  His speed is his top trait, and he consistently has been good as a run defender. Unfortunately, his coverage ability has not been as consistent.  He shows flashes, but in the last four seasons has given up 16 touchdowns.

Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Darqueze Dennard is another intriguing name for New York to keep an eye on.  He’s a solid cornerback, particularly in the slot, but has not been the most durable. With only one full season in the last six, health should undoubtedly be a concern for the Giants.  

I am sure the Giants would love to take Byron Jones away from a divisional rival and excel.  However, if the cost is an issue, there may be another option. Enter former Eagle Ronald Darby. Darby had an extremely forgetful 2019 season, posting an abysmal 45.9 grade with PFF.  He has battled injuries throughout his career and was put on injured reserve in December for a hip injury. Before 2019, Darby had been a very reliable starter, when healthy. Could he return to that form?

What is the Giants answer at improving the pass defense?

All of these options are risky.  Spend less money on inconsistent talent or durability concerns.  This has been the gamble that has hurt the New York Giants in other recent free agency moves.  The best way to help an inexperienced pass defense is to upgrade the pass rush. It’s been the story for the Giants all along, and that will not change.  

Yannick Ngakoue, Shaquil Barrett, and Kyle Van Noy could all be and should be considerations for the Giants.  The Chase Young dream is unlikely. Isaiah Simmons is versatile and talented, but will that translate to a consistent threat in disrupting the quarterback?  Trading back and somehow taking a K’Lavon Chaisson, AJ Epenesa, or any of the other next tier rookie edge defenders is an option. Whatever the case, if the Giants want to improve the pass defense without spending big in free agency, the best way to do that is to spend big in getting to the quarterback.

New York Giants: Prized free agent pass rusher may be out of reach

New York Giants, Nate Solder, Jon Halapio, Mike Remmers

The New York Giants are in dire need of upgrading their defense and one highly regarded free agent may be too pricey for Big Blue. According to Matt Verderame, the Jacksonville Jaguars are looking to keep talented defensive end Yannick Ngakoue in Duval.  The hope remains that the Jaguars will be able to strike a deal with Ngakoue.  If not, the franchise tag is very well in play.

What does a franchise tag mean for the Giants, Ngakoue?

The deadline for an NFL team to apply a franchise tag is 4:00 PM EST on March 10th.  For Ngakoue, this could mean a $17.95 million deal for the 2020 season.  If the Giants still wanted to offer the young defensive star, they would have to forfeit two first round picks.  A price that is much more than New York will be likely willing to spend.

Of course, Jacksonville also has the ability to apply a transition tag to Yannick.  This would be a cheaper option for Jacksonville ($15.32 million), but would allow other teams to negotiate with Ngakoue without needing to surrender a return.  Jacksonville would still be allowed to match an offer made for Yannick, but the transition tag is so rarely used in the NFL.

It has been documented that Yannick Ngakoue seems to want out of Jacksonville, so a franchise tag could make for a long offseason.  He may intentionally miss OTAs and minicamp if he does not agree.  The Jaguars could then trade Ngakoue, getting draft assets in return.

Frank Clark, Jadeveon Clowney and Dee Ford were all traded after being tagged last season.  The Kansas City Chiefs gave up a first and second round pick for Frank Clark.  Likewise, San Francisco sent a second round pick to Kansas City for Dee Ford.  Seattle seemingly got Jadeveon Clowney for a bargain.  With Clowney being dealt after the July 15th deadline, the Texans received a third round pick, as Seattle had more leverage in negotiations.

The Giants can still land Ngakoue… Technically

So, it is still possible for the New York Giants to acquire Yannick Ngakoue, but the cost may be too rich.  According to Spotrac, Ngakoue’s market value is somewhere between $17 and $18 million per year. However, the requirement of giving up two first round picks is incredibly steep.  Much like trading a first, second or a combination of picks for Ngakoue, giving up valuable draft assets is an unattractive option for a team in the Giants’ position.  Dave Gettleman already received criticism for giving up a third round pick for free agent to be Leonard Williams.  It is unlikely he would be willing to do that again.

New York Giants: Top Three Edge Rushers To Target In Free Agency

New York Giants, Yannick Ngakoue

Free agency is just around the corner. In March, each of the thirty-two NFL teams will be competing with each other to sign free agents on the open market. The New York Giants are estimated by Spotrac to have over $69 million in cap space before they start trimming the fat and cutting veteran contracts. They can be big-spenders in free agency if they want to be.

The Giants have a need at one of the sport’s most premium positions. Pass-rushers always get paid the big bucks in free agency because they have such a great impact on the game. Luckily for the Giants, the 2020 free agents class is loaded with big-name pass rushers. If the Giants break the bank, they could turn this position of weakness into a position of strength.

Jadeveon Clowney

The top free-agent edge rusher in 2020 is Jadeveon Clowney. The former number-one-overall pick was traded to the Seattle Seahawks this year. It is very possible that Clowney’s stint in the Emerald City will only last one year.

Jadeveon Clowney has never had a season with double-digit sacks. However, he is still regarded as one of the NFL’s most disruptive pass-rushers. Clowney is constantly in the face of the quarterback. He had 48 pressures in 2018 and 30 pressures in 2019.

Jadeveon is also a dependable player. He will show up and perform week-in and week-out. He has played over 800 snaps in each of the last three years (PFF). Clowney is also one of the best run-defending edge rushers in the league. If the Giants want to improve both their run defense and their pass-rush, Clowney is their best option. However, he will not come cheap.

According to Spotrac, Jadeveon Clowney has an estimated market value of $20 million on average annually. This would make him one of the highest-paid players at his position. It might be hard for the Giants to commit that amount of money to a player that has a career-high of 9 sacks.

Shaquil Barrett

Shaquil Barrett is another player that switched team in 2019. Barrett is a stud young pass-rusher that started his career in Denver and spent five years there before signing a one-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2019.

Barrett signed a one-year “prove-it” deal last offseason worth $5 million. He definitely proved himself worthy of a higher salary this season and is bound to get paid big-time in 2020. Shaquil led the NFL this season with 19.5 sacks. He was constantly getting to the quarterback with 51 pressures.

The 27-year-old edge rusher is going to get a massive deal this offseason, though not as expensive as Clowney’s. Shaquil Barrett has an estimated market value of $15.7 million on average annually (Spotrac). This is a more competitively-priced contract. If Barrett can uphold his 2019 production standards then this salary will be well worth it. Unfortunately, it seems like Barrett plans on staying with the Buccaneers (Sports Illustrated).

Yannick Ngakoue

The Jacksonville Jaguars have made it clear that resigning stud edge rusher Yannick Ngakoue is their “number one priority.” However, the two sides have not come close to making a deal. Last offseason, Ngakoue held out of training camp in hopes of a contract extension. The two sides have not been able to agree on a deal, which will lead to Yannick testing the market in 2020.

Through 4 seasons, Ngakoue has totaled 37.5 sacks. He has not had a single season in his career with less than 8 sacks, hitting that number in all 4 seasons including a career-high 12 sacks in 2017. Additionally, Ngakoue has totaled 122 combined tackles over 4 years.

At only 24 years-old, Yannick Ngakoue would be a vital building block for the future of the Giants’ future. However, Yannick’s talents would not come cheap. The pass-rusher has an estimated market value of $17.1 million on average annually, according to Spotrac.