NFL free agency begins Monday at noon when what is referred to as the "legal tampering" window opens. The New York Giants, with Over The Cap estimating they have $55.74 million to spend against the $155.27 million 2016 salary cap, are expected to be aggressive after three straight losing seasons.
Let's break it down.
Mario Williams and Charles Johnson
Players who have already been released by their former teams can visit, negotiate with, and sign with new teams before the actual free agency signing period begins at 4 p.m. ET on March 9. That is because they currently are not under contract to anyone. The Giants, per reports, are already kicking the tires on these two veteran pass rushers.
Johnson reportedly began a visit with the Giants on Sunday that will conclude on Monday. There were reports on Sunday that Williams was traveling to New Jersey to begin a visit Sunday night. There are conflicting reports about Williams. Josina Anderson of ESPN reported that Williams did not do so. Other reports indicate that Williams did arrive in New Jersey Sunday night and will begin a visit on Monday. Williams has apparently named his price.
Giants unrestricted free agents
The big three free agents for the Giants are Jason Pierre-Paul, Robert Ayers, and Prince Amukamara. Here is the full list of the team's unrestricted free agents.
|PLAYER||POS.||AGE||2015 CAP HIT|
What is legal tampering?
Basically, legal tampering means can negotiate with, but not visit with or sign, potential free agents whose contracts don't expire until 4 p.m. ET on Wednesday. Here is more from an NFL memo obtained by Pro Football Talk:
"During the two-day negotiating period, all clubs may negotiate all aspects of an NFL Player Contract with the certified agent of any prospective UFA," explains the March 2 memo to all teams, a copy of which PFT has obtained. "However, a new club may not execute an NFL Player Contract with a prospective UFA until 4:00 p.m., New York time, on March 9, when the player's 2015 contract expires."
Here, also from PFT, is what teams can't do:
Teams cannot execute an NFL contract, execute an agreement in principle or other similar document, announce that an agreement in principle or other similar agreement has been reached, or reach agreement on any undisclosed terms. Also, teams cannot make travel arrangements with a prospective free agent before the launch of free agency, at 4:00 p.m. ET on Wednesday.
We have profiled 26 potential free agent targets for the Giants. We have broken down candidates at several positions of need. Those are:
The Arizona Cardinals will pursue free agents Jason Pierre Paul, William Hayes, Tamba Hali and Mario Williams.— John Gambadoro (@Gambo987) March 7, 2016
Rumor late last week was DE Robert Ayers was looking for $10M per year from #Giants. Same asking price as Mario Williams— Jason Cole (@JasonColeBR) March 7, 2016