And you thought the New York Giants were bad before.
Over the span of about 24 hours the Giants effectively announced they’re having a fire sale. They traded cornerback Eli Apple, a former first-round pick, to the New Orleans Saints on Tuesday. Then on Wednesday morning, they sent defensive tackle Damon “Snacks” Harrison to the Detroit Lions for a fifth-round pick, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
That’s a solid move for the Lions, who beef up the interior of their defensive line. Opponents have averaged 5.3 yards per carry against Detroit, the most in the NFL. Harrison helps that immediately.
The Giants are 1-6, going nowhere after losing again on Monday night, and it would stand to reason they aren’t done selling off pieces before next week’s trade deadline.
Giants had a bad approach this offseason
The Giants must have taken a hard look at the roster that has produced only one win and admitted they’re in a rebuild. It’s too bad general manager Dave Gettleman didn’t have that clarity in the offseason.
The Giants didn’t approach the offseason like a team that knew it was a year or two from contending. They drafted running back Saquon Barkley over quarterback Sam Darnold, a move that will be dissected forever, as they stuck with 37-year-old quarterback Eli Manning. They traded for linebacker Alec Ogletree. They gave offensive tackle Nate Solder a contract that was, at the time, the largest for a left tackle in NFL history.
The Giants did also trade defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul and released rapidly aging receiver Brandon Marshall, but mostly the Giants acted like they had a chance to be pretty good this season.
“I’ve seen someone told one of the reporters that I’m in a tear-down. I’m not doing that,” Gettleman told NJ.com this past offseason.
Who else could be traded?
Now that the Giants have raised the white flag with a couple of trades, you have to wonder who might be next to go.
Cornerback Janoris Jenkins makes the most sense. He is 29 years old and the Giants would likely be happy to get his salary off the books. He has cap hits of $14.75 million each of the next two seasons. Jenkins has not played well this season but isn’t far removed from a Pro Bowl season in 2016 and a cornerback-needy team could talk themselves into a rebound in a new situation.
The Giants might get some calls on outside linebacker Olivier Vernon and safety Landon Collins (who is set to be a free agent next offseason). Outside of Barkley and Odell Beckham, who has a fresh new contract, there shouldn’t be too many untouchable players on the Giants’ roster.
Quarterback Eli Manning has a no-trade clause, so keep that in mind when the inevitable speculation of Manning to the Jacksonville Jaguars starts. It will, however, be interesting to see if the team gives rookie quarterback Kyle Lauletta any playing time. Former coach Ben McAdoo was run out of town after he benched Manning last season, and the Giants brass will surely remember that as they approach the Manning situation this season.
The Giants are a mess, and now they appear to be hitting the reset button at 1-6. The Giants made two trades already this week, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see some more before the deadline.
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