Patience is a virtue, especially when it comes to the New York Giants regarding contract negotiations entering the 2017 season.
The New York Giants have several players due for contract extensions, including Justin Pugh, Weston Richburg, and Jonathan Casillas. Additionally, the team has had preliminary discussions with Odell Beckham Jr. about a possible long term extension.
The team has decided not to focus on contracts, at least not during the early part of the preseason. According to Jordan Raanan of ESPN, the team put contract discussions on the back burner for training camp.
The team may discuss contracts with the players during the season, although that isn’t usually Jerry Reese’s style. He generally likes to work on contracts in the offseason, when the players don’t need to be focused on games or getting in shape.
While the natural and understandable reaction is that the team should get the contracts sorted out before players end up costing them more, it makes sense in each of these players’ cases to wait.
It all depends on the individual player, but this time around it makes sense for the Giants to exercise patience. Beckham is the biggest name of the group and will likely get the biggest deal. For that reason, waiting makes complete sense.
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First off, if Beckham plays next year on his fifth-year option, it will save the team some money that season. Secondly, Beckham is already asking for a big contract, telling Uninterrupted that he wants to become the highest paid player in the NFL.
Whether or not that happens is up for debate. It’s hard to imagine him getting paid what quarterbacks get paid now, just because of how important that position is seen around the league.
However, it’s clear he already wants massive money. At this point, his asking price won’t go up much after this year because it’s frankly hard to top him asking to be the highest paid player in the league.
Casillas has developed into a very good linebacker. But he’s also already 30 years old, which is an age where linebackers don’t often earn big contracts. He’s not going to be getting any massive contracts and waiting won’t make any difference in the matter.
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However, if the team extends him and not any of the other players, the other players may begin to get a little impatient with their contract situation.
Pugh and Richburg are the last two and the reason it’s better to wait to extend them is pretty simple. They were the only two linemen the Giants had last year, which gives them all the leverage in the world entering contract negotiations.
Right now, the Giants simply can’t afford to lose either of those two, which means that they can pretty much set their price and tell the team to match it.
In addition, if the Giants wait until the end of the season, it can buy a few options. If Ereck Flowers and Bobby Hart make strides, or D.J. Fluker steps in and shows he can be a starter, it gives the Giants more leverage.
If those players improve, which may not happen, the team gains leverage heading into negotiations. Instead of risking losing the only two good offensive linemen they had last year, they would only be losing two of three or four good linemen. That’s an easier pill to swallow if the players call the team’s bluff.
Flowers and Hart not taking a stride forward would probably slightly increase the cost of Pugh and Richburg, but if they do improve greatly, it will result in a significant decrease. It’s a risk, but one that would result in significant cap reduction if it pays off, and not a significant increase if it doesn’t.
Ultimately, waiting on doing contract extensions, for now, will have either no impact or a positive impact on the Giants salary cap down the road. It’s all or nothing and the Giants have nothing to lose from waiting.