Saturday Shootaround: Giants get much-needed cap relief

John Fennelly, Lead Writer

The NFL officially raised the salary cap to $133 million for the 2014 season yesterday. That is a $10 million jump from last season. Teams will also be able to carry over any leftover salary space from 2013. The Giants used all of their cap space in 2013, so they will not have any carryover. The average team has over $6 million in leftover space.

According to our colleague over at SB Nation, Ed Valentine, the Giants will be dealing with about $19 million in cap space, a godsend for a team that has struggled to stay under the league-mandated benchmark the past few seasons.

The league also announced the franchise tag amounts for the 2014 season. The Giants rarely exercise their right in this regard, electing to use the franchise tag only three times over the past twenty years.



Former Giant great Michael Strahan, who will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in August, has a special request for the sculptors of his bust. From PFT:

Strahan said on Jimmy Kimmel Live that he has one request when they’re molding his face for a bust in the Pro Football Hall of Fame: He wants his signature gap-toothed smile to be on display.

“You go in and they measure your head,” Strahan said. “I have to meet with the guy, because I think I want mine to be smiling.”

Most busts barely resemble the enshrinee and most of them are cast with a serious look. Michael was as serious as you can get on the field, but I’m sure no one would mind seeing his now world-famous smile lighting up the showcase in Canton.




29 comments
Kvdaone
Kvdaone

Phil is right! Tyson was more into his art and other things. It was a good trade as far as the cap is concerned. Knicks main problem is this is a pg driven league and we have had the lower tear pgs for a while......with Rondo gone, we have to trade or look foward to luring Brandon Knight or Goran Dragic..Its hard to relax when ya team is horrible and has been for a while but I do still believe in Phils savvy.

rico
rico

Dear Phil, 


You can relax and be patient when you are a Lakers fan, a Celtic Fan, a Miami fan, a Yankee Fan, even a NY Giant fan. These are all franchises with storied histories of delivering championships and success.  The NY Knicks fans are passionate about basketball and their team. They (we) are not patient, nor should we be instructed to be.


If we have to rebuild through tanking than please don't tell us the opposite. Do not tweet about how good it is for Shane, Sam and Jose to be on the court. please don't insult us like that.


Phil going at it on twitter with sheriden?  Is that what it's come to?  Then when is he going to tweet a photo of Jeanne Buss's butt blocking his view of the TV?



hosket
hosket

Change of scenery and "going home"  gave Chandler a new perspective. He is motivated....  His perspective in NYC last year was awful and mailed it in..it showed....How else was he he to be judged by Phil?.Needed Calderon and Larkin is a steal for a throw in....gotta a 2nd round pick.....Done move on....

Mike Cutrone
Mike Cutrone

“Our season got off to a rocky start-injuries-Tyson could not have changed the outcome. Trades are judged in 4-5 year terms.” Lol, is Phil forgetting this is NY?

1harris1
1harris1

LOL. I'll bet Dolan loved Phil verbally sparring with Chris Sheridan on Twitter.

I can't kill Phil over the trade. Firstly, Dolan wanted Felton off the team at all costs. No team though was taking back Felton and his contract without getting something of value. Secondly, Chandler (for whatever reason) didn't play hard last season. He needed a change of scenery. Thirdly, Calderon has obviously been set back by his injury. He's not a great player, but he's definitely better than he's shown thus far this season. Fourthly, Phil did get some young players back in the tradel, the future of which has yet to be determined.

My only gripe about the deal was that Calderon's contract eats into our cap space this summer, but he can probably be traded off if he returns to form as expected.

The Knicks have made worse trades.

Ryan Gilbert
Ryan Gilbert

Well played Phil. Far too early for Sheridan to write it all off.

Gregory Winer
Gregory Winer

I have faith in Phil. The media dogs are having a picnic, but this team will be VERY different in 2 more years.

JamesWS
JamesWS

It's funny how having an above average MLB completely changes the Giants D. Between Pierce and Beason we had garbage in the middle, and that's the kind of performance we got from the D - garbage. It's not so complicated to figure out. We need to go get us a MLB.

cole3244
cole3244

i know one thing if you look at qb compensation eli is over payed in relation to his performance.

unless you think leading the league in interceptions 3 times is a reason to celebrate, or if you give all the credit for 2 sb wins to one person and not to the  team as a whole as i still believe fb is considered a team game.

myself i think the 2 sb wins were more the result of the defense slowing down a prolific o since d wins champ in the long run.

JamesWS
JamesWS

Mind you Eli, who is making a cool $20 million, can be cut now with a $13 million cap savings. Not like that's going to happen...but next year if we cut him we'd save 17.5 million. This way, if Eli blows again this year, we can easily leverage him into a pay cut or simply release him (or trade him to the Browns for a pick).

Skookaloop
Skookaloop

Mr.F--

When you say a TEAM that has STRUGGLED,

to stay under the Cap for a FEW Seasons....

Do you mean " BROKEN, Sal-Cap Management" ??? or

Sal-Cap Management that " SUCKs "

BTW,

at the Combine Presser---

when REESE was asked about the Sal-Cap going up....

REESE Giggled like a Drunk SchoolGirl,

then said" It's hard to Maintain a High Caliber Roster with a Flat Cap,

and when your PICKing late and Last" .......What POOP !!!

in 2009 REESE had 2 extra Picks,

1 extra 2nd rounder Pick #45, &

1 extra 3rd rounder Pick #100,

thats, 5 PICKs !!! in the 1st, 100 Picks, then

in 2010, REESE had the 15th Draft slot with ALL 7 picks...

in 2011, REESE had the 19th Draft Slot,

with ALL 7 picks. +2 more 6th round Picks....

This is a WEALTH of DRAFT Picks....

ANY GM would be happy to Build a BALANCED ROSTER with...

Plus,

REESE was Given the Most IMPORTANT PIECE of the NFL ROSTER,

a Franchise QB....... that was an IRONMAN,

REESE has never had to worry about the QB Position EVER !!!

............................REESE isn't a Top GM---



Michael Stewart
Michael Stewart

John,

Due to the increase in cap space, it is very important that Jerry Reese thinks outside the box more this off season than in the past. The Giants are not going to turn this franchise around solely through the draft and Reese must be more aggressive through free agency. This is not to say that he should over spend on certain free agents; he still needs to choose wisely and get the best value. With so many needs (OL,WR,RB,CB,TE,OLB) it will be interesting to see how Reese approaches free agency and which position/positions he targets. Once the smoke clears after free agency, hopefully; we will have a better idea how he will approach the draft.

Herby Norelis
Herby Norelis

@Kvdaone No the knicks problems is that they cant play defense against other point guards who drive inside and score at will... Chandler would have stopped that!

rico
rico

@hosket are you suggesting we should not reflect on trades and assess them or discuss them?  what pray-tell do you want prefer we talk about?   I guess if we can't reflect on trades then we can't discuss FA signings or draft picks or losses or wins either and never never never mention walt bellamy for Dave D trade, just move on right?



rico
rico

@1harris1 Sure the Knicks have made worse trades but I disagree with Phil. This one was a stinker. I don't care that Shane, Sam and Jose are "on the court"…that's kind of the problem, that we had better players on the court that were traded


What GM has ever lamented a bad trade 6 months later?  Very few, especially brand new ones who aren't really GM's at all (that was too small a job) he's PRESIDENT of BASKETBALL AT MSG!


if Phil was a wise man he'd admit to learning failure so far here in NY. 


1.  Chandler Trade…Fail. I could write a novella on this one.

2.  Steve Kerr …Fail 

3.  Fisher …..Fail

4.  Triangle…why force this down the throats of players who aren't going to be here in the future.  As wise man would have implemented the triangle gently throughout the season, thereby not stigmatizing the team and effecting their play all around. 

5.   Woody…good NBA coach..maybe Phil wanted his guy but like with ALL Phil moves he's never replaced a player or coach with anyone who was more capable then what he had before?  

6.  Melo….In recruiting Melo, Phil promised Melo he would not have to endure "rebuilding"…FAIL!


I think Phil is a very smart and capable man, but his hubris and lack of humility seem to be bigger than his vision of what is.

John Fennelly
John Fennelly

@JamesWS  They would have to restructure his deal and they seem reluctant to do that. In the interim, he's killing their cap. Unless he can make another SB run....

JamesWS
JamesWS

I think the jury is still out on Reese until after we finish cycling through this roster (Eli and Snee are the last players from 2004/5 if I'm not mistaken).

The two Super Bowls are probably more thanks to TC than anyone else that isn't a player. But that doesn't mean Reese has exactly failed and I think one losing season in Reese's tenure isn't proof of anything. Let's see how he rebuilds this o-line and if the d-line pans out with Hankins and Moore who have shown promise.

spider43
spider43

@Michael Stewart  ...


7. And I forgot to mention... the more players Reese signs in Free Agency this year, the less draft choice compensation we'll be getting in the future in the event we lose players like Joseph and Nicks. So Reese is damned if he does, or damned if he doesn't.

spider43
spider43

@Michael Stewart  ....  Here's the problem with Reese and Free Agency...


1. It's usually a 1 yr contract, which doesn't lend itself to future depth and stability.


2. He's never "aggressive" in Free Agency, unless you mean aggressive as in "overpaying" for the likes of Rolle and Baas.


3. The Giants have too many holes in the roster thanks to 1 yr contracts to be "aggressive". 19 million won't go far.


4. The more he pays for his own Free Agents (like Joseph), the less he'll have for others at positions of greater need.


5. The Giants mindset (Reese) is just like the Mets of recent years. They only buy players from the scrap heap. Very rarely anyone of "name brand" recognition. If you pay for quality, you will usually get quality. But not the Giants or Mets. They target either mediocre or serviceable players, then are "surprised" when those players don't play as well as they hoped for. Rarely do they hit on anyone (exception, Stevie Brown). This is why the talent level on the team stinks.


6. The Giants organizational philosophy has never been about Free Agency. If you want an "outside-the-box" thinker, you need to find a GM who ACTUALLY goes outside the box. Look at the successes of the GMs from Ozzie Newsome to those from Seattle or San Francisco. Look at how they have rebuilt quickly and also had successful playoff runs. Reese is much better in the draft than in Free Agency, either because of organizational or personal philosophy, or both. And even in the drafts, he hasn't proven to be very good the last 2 or 3 years at the least. Sure he can hit on 1st or 2nd rounders (many GMs do that), but the rest of those drafts, almost entirely wasted on project players.


I'm not one to say Reese is inept and should be fired, but I think he really hasn't been held accountable for the failures either. Missing the playoffs in 4 out of the last 5 years is just not acceptable when the bar was raised (the standard was set) by winning two Super Bowl titles. I think Reese has been more lucky than good. He needs to display better cap management skills and stop gambling on project players and draft genuinely solid and accomplished FOOTBALL PLAYERS ready to contribute right away, rather than drafting athletes who don't have a lot of measurable successes at the college level. The film of these college players speak for themselves. I'm beginning to believe that Reese, Ross & Co put too much emphasis on the Combine results, and then reach for players in the Draft as a result. If you want "outside-the-box" thinking, they need to change their Scouting and Draft philosophy and start getting back to the fundamentals of letting the tape dictate the actual accomplishments of the players they are interested in.


Whether it's Free Agency or the NFL Draft, if the Giants don't take HUGE strides this year in improvement in these areas, there should be a massive shakeup in the Front Office. There can't be anymore excuses.


1harris1
1harris1

I hear you, but I don't think Tyson Chandler would have made this outfit a playoff team. To me, the long term consequences for the Knicks with this trade aren't that dire (who knows, maybe if they land Okafor in the draft because of how bad they are this season, that trade will turn out to be one of the best trades in Knicks history. lol).

I also respectfully disagree with the idea that Phil "failed" on not landing Kerr, if only for the idea that I don't think Kerr ever really wanted to be in NY. Kerr himself has even said Phil was the only reason he even considered the Knicks as a possibility.

Fisher has been terrible, but I'm still willing to wait on him. Last season at this time I thought Kidd was brutal while in charge of the Nets, and now I view him as a damn good coach.

I do agree that Phil probably should have considered utilizing a different system than the triangle for this team. When you've won 11 titles though doing something a particular way, I can see why you would be looking to impress it upon others as a GM.

I'm still high on Phil. Obviously though, he has much to prove as a GM. We'll see what happens.

Skookaloop
Skookaloop

@John Fennelly  

NO !!!!!!

ELI is NOT KILLing the CAP !!!!!

this is 100% REESE's,

 Sal-Cap MANAGMENT !!!!

PISS POOR Planning & Risk taking by REESE...

ELI Has ZERO to do with the ACCOUNTing !!!

why can't you SEE that ???!!!???


JamesWS
JamesWS

Does he have a no trade clause? Seriously, if he underperforms again this year, I'm ready to move on. (And don't get me wrong, he's my favorite athlete of all time, but I'm a fan of the Giants winning games more than anything).

Next year Eli will be on the last year of his contract with merely 2-3 million guaranteed. We could probably trade him to another team and get some picks...and it would help us rebuild. It's going to have to happen eventually. Eli won't play forever.

John Fennelly
John Fennelly

@spider43 Compensation is no reason to stay away from free agency. Reese has always tried to make the team better whenever he got the chance. His mid-season moves and penchant for finding UDFAs has defrayed his poor drafts. 

rico
rico

@1harris1 I am pleased as punch that Phil is running basketball at MSG now, I was simply and maybe poignantly pointing out that he's fallable, he's a rookie.  I don't expect him to come out publicly and say "I messed up that one. Hey I'm new at this". But I hope privately he's reflecting on these, and that so far I don't perceive that he has done anything special or even winning here in NY except get hired.  


I'm in it for the long haul and hope he is too.  I do take offense to how he criticized the knicks in the press last year as a clumsy roster, only to tear it up into one of the least talented rosters in Knick history.   Tickets to Knick games are not $10 or $50, more like $300+++++ to see a knick game.  Jackson has to present something the ticket holders a little better than "check back with me in 5 years". 


I think we have to separate the cult of Jackson to the reality that running the Knicks is a lot different from the other things he's succeeded at . Not saying he will be a failure but he's got a lot to learn.





Michael Stewart
Michael Stewart

@billysuede @Michael Stewart Are you giving Reese the credit for that SB victory. Giants needed to win the last 2 games of the season to even have a chance at the playoffs. Luckily, Manning was outstanding the entire season with so many 4th quarter come from behind wins and he carried that success into the playoffs. Do me a favor, review all of Reese's draft selections since 2007 with every other GM during that same time span. Where do you think Reese will rank in regards to players he drafted and having the most success in the NFL compared to all the other NFL teams. After you research that, then you can try to defend Reese. .

Michael Stewart
Michael Stewart

@spider43 That is my point when I referenced that Reese needs to think outside the box and not approach Free Agency like he has done in the past. Reese has had two bad drafts in a row (2012/2013) and I have stated that 2013 draft was his worse. Many fans give Reese credit for the Giants winning the Super Bowl in 2007 (which was his 1st year as GM). Giving Reese credit for 2007 SB win is like giving a rooster credit for the sun to rise (Al Gore). If Reese has another poor draft, it should be his last as GM of the Giants.

spider43
spider43

@John Fennelly...  You are correct about his results on Undrafted Free Agents, but he's not infallible. Herzlich has yet to pan out (unfortunately), and I was a big Herzlich fan. And yes, Reese shouldn't shy away from Free Agents just because we'd lose draft pick compensation. My point was more about the fact that philosophically, the team just doesn't dabble that much in Free Agency as a rule... only doing it to fill in gaps as opposed to trying to sign superior talent. That is not the Giants way. They tend to shop at Wal-Mart or the Dollar Store, rather than on Saks 5th Avenue or even Macy's. I think the only reason Reese went after Beason last year is because "something" finally hit him over the head with a hammer and told him that he needed to address the LB corps NOW. The 0-6 start was a stark reminder at how important LB is to a defense. When the defense had to be on the field as much as they were because the ineptness of the offense, the defense needed bolstering in the worst way just to survive, let alone improve. Thus, enter Beason. If we don't keep Beason around, it was a waste of a 7th round pick.