Free Agency: Where Do the New York Giants Go from Here?

Brad Gagnon NFL National ColumnistMarch 18, 2013

BALTIMORE, MD - DECEMBER 23:  Head coach Tom Coughlin of the New York Giants motions from the sidelines during the first half of the Gaints 33-14 loss to the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on December 23, 2012 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Quietly, the New York Giants have emptied the piggy bank and grabbed some quality players on the free-agent market. The G-Men don't usually make splashes in free agency, and that's again the case this year, but considering how little money they had to spend, it's impressive that they've added a pair of potential starters (Dan Connor and Brandon Myers) and a pair of veteran contributors (Louis Murphy and Aaron Ross). 

I have no idea how they've been able to fit their newbies under the cap, but the Giants are definitely cutting it close. With that in mind, there's a very good chance they're done spending cash on out-of-house players, especially if they want to sign Hakeem Nicks and/or Victor Cruz to long-term deals. 

The Giants still need a lot of help on defense, and they still have two potential starters that remain unsigned in Sean Locklear and Chase Blackburn. They might turn away from Locklear in favor of David Diehl at right tackle and could go with Connor rather than Blackburn at middle linebacker, which would likely clear the way for them to draft the best player available when they're on the clock with the 19th pick on April 25. 

Is that the focus now? Probably. The Giants are likely going to move away from the market now (or soon) and start trying to determine who they like the most in the draft. They need help at cornerback, linebacker, defensive end and right tackle, and this happens to be a good draft in those spots. 

In case they're still hoping to take advantage of leverage on the free-agent market between now and then, here are some possible targets.

Lawrence Jackson (DE, Lions)Jackson is a former first-round pick with a lot of talent. He's never had more than six sacks in a season, but he'd come cheap now. 

Ryan Harris (OT, Texans): Here's a fairly reliable right tackle with starting experience. He served as the swing man in Houston last year and might deserve a chance to man the right side of a line permanently again. He'd probably cost about the same amount as Locklear.

Brad Jones (LB, Packers): Jones is taking his time, but he has had a lot of teams interested in him on the market. Not surprising considering how well he played in Green Bay in 2012, but the 26-year-old sure would fit in nicely with the G-Men.

D.J. Moore (CB, Bears): Physical, versatile, young and still available. He might be a little expensive, but Moore would make the secondary better immediately.