The New York Giants have made two moves this week, trading CB Eli Apple to the New Orleans Saints and defensive lineman Damon Harrison to the Detroit Lions. These trades have seemingly kicked off a rebuild in New York, and with the NFL Trade Deadline less than a week away, we sit and wait to see if any of the other shoes drop.
Eli Apple was traded to the Saints on Tuesday in exchange for a 2019 fourth-round pick and a 2020 seventh-round pick. His stay in New York was noticeably tumultuous, especially last year. However, Apple seemed to rebound this year and has played well. However, the Giants felt the need to give him a clean slate, and felt they got enough value, as head coach Pat Shurmur mentioned.
“We’re doing what we can right now to win football games, but we’re also always looking at the roster on a short-term and a long-term basis,” Shurmur stated. “We felt like it was good value. Eli has played well for us here this year. He’s going to be a Saint now, and so we wish him well.”
Damon Harrison was traded to the Lions early Wednesday morning in exchange for a 2019 fifth-round pick. Harrison has been one of the best interior linemen against the run, with his 2016 All-Pro season being a prime example. That season, Harrison had 86 tackles, 6 for loss, and was named Best Run Defender by Pro Football Focus. The Lions made the trade official on Thursday morning. Harrison has little injury history to speak of and will shore up one of the worst run defenses in a big way.
Now that that is out of the way, let’s take a look at two players who could find themselves the center of trade rumors during the next few days:
The Giants have one of the best safeties in the game in Landon Collins on the roster, and although a move isn’t altogether likely, it would benefit the Giants to at least listen on the 24-year old. Collins is in the final year of his contract, and a franchise tag is in play. A massive contract extension is also possible, but would a rebuilding Giants team want to pour a lump sum into one player? Granted, that one player will be entering his prime and isn’t going to be 30 any time soon, but the question still remains.
Collins struggled his rookie year, but was able to rebound in 2016, having a monster year. He had 5 interceptions, 13 pass breakups, and 125 total tackles en route to being named an All-Pro. He was a Pro Bowler again the following year, recording 99 tackles. Collins is still young, and could be a potential cornerstone for any acquiring franchise. That being said, his price could be high, and it should be. The Giants could always bring him back, but if they decide that Collins doesn’t fit into their future plans, it’d be in their best interest to look at his market.
Jenkins is more likely to be moved, and is already in the thick of trade discussions. The New England Patriots are reportedly interested in the 29-year old, and the Pittsburgh Steelers and Philadelphia Eagles are also interested in a corner. Jenkins has a market, and the Giants should look into a move.
Jenkins signed with the Giants before the 2016 season, and produced a Pro Bowl season. He played 15 games, recording 49 tackles, 18 pass deflections, and 3 interceptions. The 2017 season was a rough one for Jenkins, as he was suspended one game for violating team rules and had to undergo season-ending ankle surgery after playing just nine games. Jenkins so far has 3 interceptions and 33 tackles this year, and could be a reliable option for any team looking for a corner down the stretch.
Jenkins still has two years left on his contract after this year, and he’ll earn $10.15M in each of those years. This price tag will affect his value and might scare teams away, but the Giants will do their diligence and try to ship him out. It is the right move for a rebuilding team, especially if the Giants do decide to extend Collins instead of trading him.
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