Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
The popular consensus among fans is the Giants need to land a solid free safety to complement Landon Collins, with names such as Eric Weddle of San Diego and Tashaun Gipson of Cleveland being among those frequently mentioned.
However, the Giants might view their safety situation a little differently.
Remember, they were willing to roll the dice last year with youngsters like Nat Berhe, fifth-round draft pick Mykkele Thompson and Bennett Jackson as a potential complement to Collins, this all taking place before injuries wiped out Berhe, Thompson and Jackson for the season.
Assuming the Giants have not given up on any of those three—and it would be surprising if they have—New York might be looking at a complementary type of safety who can play both spots and contribute on special teams.
If that’s the case, a potential free-agent target who made Pro Football Focus’ list of top-10 free-agent safeties is David Bruton of the Denver Broncos—a little known backup player who last season played in 497 defensive snaps for the Super Bowl champions.
Bruton has experience at both strong and free safety and when it came to coverage, he made the most of his limited snaps.
Per PFF, Bruton’s 69.6 NFL rating consisted of allowing just one touchdown while picking off two passes and breaking up three in coverage.
That might not seem like gaudy numbers—they’re not given that Bruton wasn’t a starter.
However, he contributed to a pass defense that, per Real Football Network, allowed just 60 percent of the pass attempts against it to be completed (3 percent less than the NFL average) and also allowed fewer touchdowns and had more interceptions than the league averages.
Bruton was also a solid special teams player for Denver, recording six solo tackles and one assist, the fourth-best on the team, per Pro Football Focus.
The one question mark regarding Bruton, the Broncos’ third safety, involves the status of the broken fibula he suffered in December—an injury he played through in the game in which the injury occurred.
If Bruton’s injury checks out and the Giants are committed to moving one of Berhe, Jackson or Thompson into a larger role for next season, it makes sense for the team to look at a young veteran with a solid history of contributing but who probably won’t cost a premium contract.