The New York Giants are hoping to add star edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney to a defense in need of talent.
The New York Giants found lightning in a bottle last offseason, adding edge rusher Markus Golden on a prove-it deal. He put up 10 sacks, regaining the form he showed in 2016 after encountering some injury issues in 2017 and 2018.
Golden is a free agent this season, and while the team could bring him back, they need to add more pass-rushing talent. They recorded a total of 36 sacks in 2019 as they struggled to generate much of a pass rush beyond Golden.
The team is looking to swing big in free agency to add talent on the edge. According to Josina Anderson of ESPN, the Giants are interested in Jadeveon Clowney, along with the Indianapolis Colts.
— ig: josinaanderson (@JosinaAnderson) February 27, 2020
Clowney, the first overall pick in 2014, has 32 sacks and 80 quarterback hits across six NFL seasons (75 games). He spent the first five seasons of his career with the Houston Texans, combining with J.J. Watt to terrorize offensive lineman and quarterbacks.
However, he couldn’t come to an agreement with the team on a long-term contract and wasn’t interested in playing under the franchise tag, so he was traded to the Seattle Seahawks before the 2019 season. He did play on the tag with the Seahawks in 2019 but the team agreed not to place the franchise tag on him after the season in exchange for him signing the tender.
He wasn’t as dominant in Seattle as he’d been in Houston, recording only three sacks and 13 quarterback hits. However, he is still a game-changing talent and would help the Giants immensely in new coach Joe Judge’s first season at the helm.
Clowney is going to get paid a handsome figure this offseason as the top pass rusher available, but that shouldn’t be an issue for the team. They should have roughly $74 million in salary cap space after they cut linebackers Alec Ogletree and Kareem Martin.
General manager Dave Gettleman has the cap space to add Clowney and he is a dominant player at a position of need. The team will have to pay up for his services, but he has the ability to transform their defense if they land him.