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5 remaining Giants free agents who deserve to be re-signed or sign elsewhere

The first week of free agency has come and gone across the NFL, and the New York Giants have been quite busy.

In addition to re-signing several of their own in-house free agents, general manager Joe Schoen has also made a few splashes elsewhere. He’s added quality depth at positions of need and acquired tight end Darren Waller via trade.

But 10 Giants remain unsigned. They are as follows:

  • LB/S Landon Collins

  • DL Justin Ellis

  • OL Jon Feliciano

  • WR Richie James

  • LB/S Tony Jefferson

  • WR Marcus Johnson

  • CB Fabian Moreau

  • LB Jaylon Smith

  • DL Nick Williams

  • LB Oshane Ximines

There are some notable names in that group and five of them absolutely deserve to either be re-signed or signed elsewhere.

Let’s take a look at those players.

WR Richie James

James may have had some issues hanging onto the ball in 2022 but it’s only fair to point out that he was thrust into a larger-than-expected role.

A career special teamer, James suddenly found himself serving as one of quarterback Daniel Jones’ security blankets. He took 524 offensive snaps, a career-high, hauling in 57 receptions (on 70 targets) for 569 yards and four touchdowns.

Those numbers are also all career highs for James.

Not only did James fill his role well, but he also showed a knack for making big plays in big moments. He displayed impressive field awareness and always seemed to know where the sticks were.

There may not be space left for James with the Giants, but he absolutely deserves a shot somewhere.

OL Jon Feliciano

Of the Giants’ 10 remaining unsigned free agents, Feliciano is arguably the most obvious player deserving of a new contract.

The Giants are currently without a true center on their roster and with Nick Gates having bolted for Washington, it makes sense for Schoen to bring him back.

While Feliciano was far from perfect in the middle of the offensive line, he is a good leader with a few years left on his body. He has a high football IQ and at worse, could serve as a bridge to the team’s next anchor at center.

It’s somewhat surprising that he’s generated no interest from around the league but with wave two of free agency just beginning, that is likely to change.

CB Fabian Moreau

Moreau was a late addition to the Giants’ practice squad and began the year as a routine elevation. He eventually found his way onto the 53-man roster and went on to start 11 games at cornerback alongside Adoree’ Jackson.

For what the Giants needed, Moreau fit the bill. He was decent in coverage and a solid tackler, setting a career-high with 66 on the season. He also missed just three tackles, which was also a career-best.

Moreau’s 10 passes defensed were the second-highest tally of his career and led the team.

Not bad for a guy who was essentially an afterthought in early September.

LB/S Landon Collins

Collins was another very late addition, signing to the Giants’ practice squad in October. It then took some time for the veteran to get acclimated to Wink Martindale’s defense and while that led to some frustration, Collins remained entirely professional.

By the end of October, Collins has found his way back onto the field in a reserve role and made the most of his opportunity.

In six games (one start), Collins pretty much did it all. He saw time at linebacker and safety, played the run and dropped into coverage, and just about filled up his stat sheet.

When all was said and done, Collins recorded 15 tackles (one for a loss), one QB hit, one sack, two passes defensed, one interception, and one defensive touchdown. He also allowed just eight receptions for 59 yards and no touchdowns.

It was a small sample size but enough to prove Collins’ career isn’t over.

LB/S Tony Jefferson

The Giants scooped Jefferson up after he was released by the Baltimore Ravens, reuniting him with defensive coordinator Wink Martindale.

But like many other players on this list, Jefferson spent some time on the practice squad and filled sort of a reserve/utility role. He primarily played safety but like Collins, would occasionally drop down into the box.

In nine games (one start), Jefferson recorded 23 tackles (16 solo) and one pass defensed. He graded out well in coverage (77.0) despite allowing 12 receptions on 13 targets. But eight of those were credited as stops.

The 31-year-old Jefferson announced early in free agency that he was switching from safety to linebacker, hoping to breathe some life back into his career.

Story originally appeared on Giants Wire