The New York Giants are in “cap hell” if you’re listening to most pundits out there, but ESPN’s Jordan Raanan is not one of those people.
Raanan has repeatedly fought back against the notion that the Giants are crippled by the cap and on Sunday, he broke down exactly why that’s a flawed and inaccurate statement.
Enough with this limited cap space junk. The Giants can sign players, if they so desire. Basically have no long-term deals on the books. And I’d be surprised if they didn’t get a deal done with Leonard Williams by Wednesday. Franchise tag was intended as a place-holder. https://t.co/sONvOQwKnh
— Jordan Raanan (@JordanRaanan) March 14, 2021
“I’m getting tired of hearing this. This is kind of silly,” Raanan told Chris Carlin on 98.7 ESPN Radio. “The Giants can create money if they want to create money. I don’t want to hear crying poor.
“Who is signed at a high-end deal at their position, top of the market, long term where the Giants don’t have all this money? They don’t have Aaron Donald, Todd Gurley or Jared Goff. The Giants have a quarterback on a rookie deal. He is not signed long term. Saquon Barkley isn’t even signed long term. There are very few guys on their team who are top of the market.”
The cap dropping for the first time since its inception in 1994 is certainly problematic, but the Giants aren’t alone in that boat. Every team had to make adjustments to account for the dip and New York is actually positioned well to do exactly that.
General manager Dave Gettleman took the first steps in that direction by restructuring the contracts of tight end Levine Toilolo and offensive tackle Nate Solder, but now they must get a handle on Leonard Williams’ salary.
“Yes, the cap went down and most teams are in this situation. They have to cut guys and create money,” Raanan added. “The Giants just put a $19 or $20 million nut head cap number on Leonard Williams. Sign him to a long-term deal and all the sudden that number is going to decrease greatly.
“If they want to re-sign anyone, if they want to move money around… If the Giants want to make moves they are in a position to make moves. They can create money in several, several different ways.”
Contract extensions for safety Jabrill Peppers and punter Riley Dixon would clear quite a bit of space. So would restructured contracts for cornerback James Bradberry and linebacker Blake Martinez.
The Giants could also potentially extend the contract of tight end Evan Engram to clear up some space or convert some of Logan Ryan’s salary into a bonus. The option to trade Engram also exists, but that seems unlikely.
Up and down New York’s roster, there are plenty of options to clear as much space as they feel they would need. And with the cap expected to return to normal in 2022 and then potentially jump significantly in the coming years, the option to push back salary is always there.
The bottom line: New York is not in the cap hell some would have you believe.