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New York Giants news, 3/6: Johnathan Hankins could be heading to free agency

Vacchiano calls that possibility “increasingly likely,’ and more free agent chatter

NFL: Preseason-New York Giants at Buffalo Bills
Johnathan Hankins
Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

NFL teams can officially begin negotiating with free agents on Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET. With that in mind, let’s start your day by taking a look at the free agent rumor mill from a New York Giants perspective.

Johnathan Hankins going, going ...

We know the Giants are hoping to re-sign defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins. We have been told that by multiple beat writers, on top of which it makes sense because he is a good player who will only be 25 next season.

SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano reports that the Giants are probably not going to be able to keep Hankins.

The Giants have made an effort to re-sign DT Johnathan Hankins, a source said, but it seems increasingly likely that he's going to test the market - and if he does, he's almost certainly gone. The feeling among NFL personnel people is that while he's not in Damon Harrison's class, he's young enough (25 in three weeks) and with enough potential that he could end up getting close to the deal Harrison got. Maybe not the full five years, $46.5 million, but something around $7-8 million a year seems about right.

Andrew Whitworth “most logical” left tackle option?

Those are the words of ESPN’s Jordan Ranaan. He wrote this about the left tackle market:

Andrew Whitworth (Bengals) is the most logical option, even if it sounds as if the Giants aren’t going to attack the upper end of the offensive line market. More likely, they'll look at the next level of players beginning with Russell Okung. He spent last year with Denver and was a serviceable left tackle option. The Giants liked him enough to bring him in for a visit last offseason, and the sticking point was their reluctance to offer the left tackle job to Okung with Flowers on the roster. After this past season, that could change. Regardless, signing Whitworth or Okung should be a must for the Giants this offseason.

There is only one problem with beating the drum for Whitworth. A source has told me that despite reports Whitworth will test the market he is almost certainly heading back to Cincinnati.

A no-splash zone?

James Kratch of NJ Advance Media is not expecting the Giants to make any splashy signings:

Anything could happen, but it does not look like the Giants will be swinging for the fences again this offseason. That's not a bad thing, either. The Giants have some roster holes, but they are nowhere near last year's situation. They have Pierre-Paul in the fold, they'll try with Hankins and then they will look to make quality moves, rather than splash moves.

The Giants’ available cap space ($15.789 million with top 51, 27th in the league, per Spotrac) will make it difficult for the Giants to compete in a market where price tags are expected to explode.

Yes, they can make a few moves to create more space, but so can all 26 of those teams that already have more room to maneuver than the Giants.

Want to know some of the expected price tags for players? Check the Twitter account of Yahoo Sports NFL writer Charles Robinson.

Quick hits

Right tackle Ricky Wagner is expected to leave the Baltimore Ravens. He would be a nice get for the Giants, except that a source has indicated Wagner could fetch $10 million annually on the open market. looks at potential free-agent bargain signings.

Here are some trends that could impact the market.

Veteran running backs like Adrian Peterson and others appear unlikely to find a rich market.

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