Giants general manager Joe Schoen: We’ll have tough salary cap decisions to make
The Giants handed out a few big contracts in free agency during Dave Gettleman’s final years as general manager, handing out contracts to James Bradberry, Blake Martinez, Kenny Golladay and Adoree’ Jackson. Those contracts are among those that have pushed the Giants above the salary cap set for 2022. The Giants are over the cap by more than $11 million, and general manager Joe Schoen told NBC Sports’ Peter King last month. last that he wanted to clear around $40 million in cap space before the start of the league’s new year.
“It is a concern, and it is real. There are going to be some tough decisions to make“Schoen recently said, via SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano.
Some cap-victim candidates include Martinez, Sterling Shepard and Kyle Rudolph. Although Martinez delivered his usual output of high-end gear in 2020, the veteran linebacker suffered a torn ACL in September. Martinez might need a pay cut to stay, Vacchiano offers, although the 28-year-old linebacker is only tied to an $8.4 million salary. Cutting Martinez would save the Giants more than $8 million, while an expected ousting of Rudolph would add $5 million to that total. After June 1, Shepard would save nearly $9 million if released. Shepard is the Giants’ longest-serving player, arriving as a second-round pick in 2016, but has struggled with injuries for much of his career. Bradberry is Big Blue’s No. 1 cornerback, although Vacchiano adds that he shouldn’t be considered a lock for next year’s team. A designation after June 1 makes a version of Bradberry worth $13 million. Of course, the Giants would be in dire need of a cornerback if they cut Bradberry. The ex-Panther’s three-year, $45 million contract expires after next season.
Here is the latest news from the reconstruction team:
- Schoen won’t retain one of Gettlemen’s top front office lieutenants. Co-Director of Player Personnel Mark Koncz will not be returning, according to New York Post’s Ryan Dunleavy (on Twitter). Koncz followed Gettleman to New York in 2017, after spending nearly 25 years with the Panthers. Koncz worked with Carolina before the franchise’s 1995 debut and remained through a few general managers, finishing his tenure as the Panthers’ director of professional scouting from 2000 to 2017.
- More new staff are bound for New York. The planned hiring of former Ravens outside linebackers coach Drew Wilkins has indeed taken place, with the Giants also hiring former Bills assistant John Egorugwu to coach their “inside supports.” Egorugwu, 35, was on Sean McDermott’s staff for four years before spending the 2021 season at Vanderbilt. The first name mentioned as a staff candidate once Don Martindale took over as Giants DC, Wilkins, 34, worked with the Ravens for 10 years and spent the last two as an outside linebackers coach .
- The Giants are also adding to Brian Daboll’s staff in the college ranks, hiring DeAndre Smith as the new running backs coach. Smith comes from Texas Tech and has never coached in the NFL before, spending more than 20 seasons at the college level. The move comes after the Giants offered the job to former running backs coach Deland McCullough, according to The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman (on Twitter). Notre Dame just hired McCullough, who spent the 2021 season at Indiana after coaching Chiefs running backs the previous three years, for new HC staff Marcus Freeman.