New York Giants Free Agency Tracker: Updated Signings, Rumors, Storylines

Jeffrey SchmidtCorrespondent IIIMarch 12, 2012

New York Giants Free Agency Tracker: Updated Signings, Rumors, Storylines

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    Free agency is set to begin on March 13th, and there a number of rumors, storylines and signings that have been circulating around the Giants leading up to it.

    New York has a several issues that it needs to address during free agency, including resigning and cutting some key players from last seasons Super Bowl run. 

    This will be a busy offseason for Jerry Reese as he attempts to put the Giants in a position to repeat as champions, which is a task that few teams have ever accomplished. 

Signing Tracker

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    The Giants have been relatively quite so far with their long list of free agents, but here are some of the moves that the team has already made.  

    April 11, 2012: ProFootballTalk is reporting the Giants have signed OT Sean Locklear.

    March 16, 2012: ProFootballTalk is reporting the Giants have signed Steve Weatherford to a 5 year, $12.75 million dollar contract.

    March 15, 2012: The Giants have signed former Redskins defensive back Chris Horton, according to his agent Gary Uberstine.

    March 14, 2012: The Giants have re-signed QB David Carr, terms and conditions of the deal were not announced.

    March 14, 2012: ESPN's Adam Schefter reported via his Twitter that the Giants signed TE Martellus Bennett to a one-year $2.5 million contract.

    March 13, 2012: Michael Coe and Justin Tryon agreed to deals with the Giants after both spent time on the IR list last season.  

     

    March 13, 2012: David Bass restructured his 2012 salary from $3M to $900,000.

     
    March 13, 2012: Terrell Thomas signed a four year $28M contract.   
    March 9, 2012: Brandon Jacobs released. 
    March 8, 2012: Jake Ballard signed a one year $540k contract.
    March 8, 2012: Eli Manning restructured his 2012 salary from $10.75M to $1.75M
    March 8, 2012: Bruce Johnson signed a one year $540k contract.
    March 5, 2012: Steve Weatherford signed a one year $2.665 million franchise tag.
    March 2, 2012: Domenik Hixon signed a one year $615k contract.


    Bringing back both Steve Weatherford and Jake Ballard were two huge moves for the Giants, as both were key contributors last season. 

    Eli Manning may have saved the Giants offseason when he restructured his contract and the Giants brought back Domenik Hixon after the receiver missed the entire 2011 campaign. 

List of Giants Free Agents

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    This is a list of the Giants restricted and unrestricted free agents. The team will have until March 13th to sign these players or they will be free to sign with any other franchise.   

    March 18, 2012: According to Pro Football Talk via their Twitter, the 49ers and now former Giants' WR Mario Manningham have agreed to terms on a two-year deal.

    March 13, 2012: ProFootballTalk is reporting that the Giants have re-signed CB Terrell Thomas. According to Mike Garafolo of the Newark Star Ledger, Thomas' new deal is four years and worth $28 million, with $11 million of it guaranteed money.

     

    Player Position Type Will they return? (IMO)
    Rocky Bernard DT UFA No
    Chase Blackburn LB UFA Yes
    Will Blackmon CB UFA Yes
    Aaron Ross CB UFA

    March 20, 2012: Jaguars signed CB Aaron Ross

    Stacy Andrews G UFA No
    Jimmy Kennedy DT UFA No
    Jonathan Goff LB UFA Yes
    Deon Grant S UFA No
    Devin Thomas WR UFA Yes
    Terrell Thomas CB UFA Re-signed 3/13
    Dave Tollefson DE UFA Yes
    Mario Manningham WR UFA No
    Justin Tryon CB UFA Re-signed 3/13
    Derrick Martin CB UFA No
    Kareem McKenzie T UFA No
    Tony Ugoh T UFA No
    David Carr QB UFA Re-signed 3/14
    Bear Pascoe TE UFA Yes
    Michael Clayton WR UFA No
    Ryan Perrilloux QB RFA No
    Michael Coe CB UFA Re-signed 3/13

Salary Cap Status

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    The NFL released its salary cap figure for the 2012 season and set it at $120.6 million. The number is just $225,000 more than last year’s figure, and it leaves the Giants $1,221,745 under the cap, according to Spotrac.com.  

    The Giants were a few million dollars over the cap until a few days ago when Eli Manning restructured his contract to open room for free-agent signings. Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News explains how the deal effects their number.

    According to two NFL sources who saw the terms of the restructuring, the move, disclosed Thursday, involved reducing Manning’s base salary from $10.75 million to $1.75 million. The remaining $9 million was converted to a guarantee — either in the form of an upfront bonus, or simply a guaranteed portion of his salary. That allowed the Giants to spread the cap hit from that $9 million over the final four years of his current deal.That in turn reduced Manning’s cap number from $16.35 million to just $9.6 million this season, although it does increase his number by $2.25 million in each of the ensuing three years.

    The Giants may have to consider releasing other players that have a high cap number to make room for new talent and guys like Osi Umenyiora and Chris Snee may fall victim.

    March 13, 2012: New York Giants center David Baas has restructured his contract, dropping his 2012 salary from $3 million to $900,000 according to Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News.  The remaining $2.1 million is probably converted to a bonus. 

Free Agents That the Giants May Go After

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    Bart Scott

    Tony Pauline of Sports Illustrated reports that if Scott were to hit the open market, the New York Giants be one of the first to contact him. 

    "Word from the combine: if the Jets cut Bart Scott he could end up changing locker rooms and playing for the Giants," Pauline tweeted.

    Plaxico Burress

    Reports have circulated stating that Burress wants to play for the Philadelphia Eagles, but when Rich Gannon and Adam Schein asked Burress if he would play for the Giants again, the response left the possibility open. 

    “It’s always a great possibility,” 

    The Giants will mostly likely be losing Mario Manningham in free agency, so the idea of bringing Burress in may not be too far-fetched. 

    Steve Smith

    According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, ex-Giant Steve Smith would be open to a reunion in New York. Smith had great chemistry with Eli Manning during his tenure, and he would provide a cheap and reliable option for New York.

    Dallas Clark

    The Giants lost two of their top tight ends in the Super Bowl due to knee injuries, so a tight end will be a high priority heading into free agency and the draft. 

    Dallas Clark was recently released by the Colts, and after a sub-par season, he could come at a cheap price.

    The move would allow the Giants to take the best player available at the end of round one instead of reaching for a tight end.   

    Mike Tolbert/Ryan Grant/BenJarvus Green-Ellis

    The Giants will need to find a backup to replace Brandon Jacobs, and I can see any of these three guys signing with New York.

    Mike Tolbert may the best option as he would provide the Giants with an excellent third-down threat. Tolbert ran for 490 yards and eight touchdowns, and he also proved to be a productive receiver out of the backfield, totaling 433 yards and two touchdowns.