Brandon Marshall jumping ship to the New York Giants makes sense on numerous levels, making a switch from green to blue quite realistic.
The New York Jets will have to choose whether they want to keep or release the soon to be 33-year-old Marshall. He’s due $7.5 million next season; the rebuilding Jets could sever ties with the aging veteran to clear cap space and give opportunities to a plethora of young wide outs. This situation is ideal for Giants GM Jerry Reese to capitalize.
Should Marshall follow in Harrison’s footsteps and exchange the green for blue, he’d enter an enviable situation. Though Marshall is entering the twilight of his career, a move to the Giants is more than sensical.
Victor Cruz‘s playing days in East Rutherford are gone, leaving the Giants with an obvious deficiency opposite Odell Beckham Jr. Sterling Sheppard is a near lock to see the majority of snaps out of the slot, making Marshall the perfect compliment to Beckham on the outside.
The Giants have lacked a physical, possession minded receiver, who uses his size to make plays since Hakeem Nicks donned the blue and white. Marshall’s physicality would perfectly compliment the incendiary Beckham.
A young and emotional Beckham could also learn from the aging Marshall, who had his fair share of issues during his earlier years in the league. Cruz is gone and won’t be the on-site veteran leader for the young Giants receivers. Marshall has matured since his earlier years and could serve as the necessary veteran presence for a relatively young group of receivers.
Conversely, an aging 33-year-old whose production was cut in half compared to 2015 obviously has its red flags. The potential for decline is real, but Marshall is only two seasons removed from a pro bowl campaign in which he topped 100 catches, 1,500 yards and 14 touchdowns. The fire inside Marshall likely isn’t out yet, however.
Entering his twelfth season in the NFL, Marshall still has not appeared in a single playoff game. Coming to a team fresh off an 11 win season and a wild card appearance should keep his fire lit as he nears the latter stages of an otherwise impressive career. A receiver trio consisting of OBJ, B-Marsh and Sterling Shepard should have Eli Manning salivating heading into the preseason. The 2011 trio of Cruz, Nicks and Mario Manningham worked pretty well, didn’t it?
Of course, the Giants will need better offensive line play to give Manning time to spread the ball around. Establishing a run game is important, though, Manning is still the only quarterback to win the Super Bowl while possessing the league’s worst ground attack. Furthermore, Marshall would give the Giants legitimate depth at receiver, though a potential contract remains difficult to predict.
Should Marshall be released, he’ll probably ask for a contract in the neighborhood of the $7.5 million he’s scheduled to earn in 2017. Whether Jerry Reese is willing to meet his demands is uncertain, but it’s a price he should consider if he wants to solidify his offense.
The all-pro days for Marshall could be over, though he doesn’t have to play like one for the Giants’ passing attack to be successful.
Should he have any concerns about the Giants organization, his old buddy Harrison should be able to walk him to the blue side.