Wide Right Podcast 46
(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

The New York Giants placed the unrestricted free agent tender on edge rusher Markus Golden earlier this offseason.

He’s not a star by any means, but Markus Golden at least provided the New York Giants with some sort of production in the pass-rushing department last year. On a cheap, one-year deal, Golden notched 10 sacks, becoming the first Giants linebacker to hit a double-digit mark in that category since Lawrence Taylor recorded 10.5 sacks in 1990.

The veteran explored free agency this offseason, but with no teams willing to match his asking price, Big Blue placed the unrestricted free agent tender on him. This will make him a Giant for the upcoming season unless he signs elsewhere by either July 22 or the day NFL training camps open, and according to Ralph Vacchiano of SNY, another year with Golden in East Rutherford seems likely.

Vacchiano writes, “The status of Golden is basically unchanged. He’s still a free agent and, since the Giants put the “May 5 tender” on him, he’s only got until July 22 (or the first day of the first NFL training camp, whichever is later — and that may turn out to be July 28) to find a new team, otherwise his only option is to sign a one-year, $4.125 million deal with the Giants.

“And there is no indication that any other team is interested in signing him for more than that.”

When he was a free agent before the 2019 campaign, Golden’s prior connection to then-Giants defensive coordinator James Bettcher from his tenure with the Cardinals likely played a significant role in him signing with Big Blue. Markus played in Arizona from 2015-18, with Bettcher serving as his defensive coordinator there from 2015-17.

Golden’s contract last year included a base salary of $975,000 and a cap hit of $4.75 million. At one point this offseason, he was reportedly seeking $10 million annually. Nonetheless, if things don’t change from now until late July, he could be performing with a salary much less than that.

Ryan Honey is a staff writer and host of the Wide Right Podcast.