It appears the New York Giants organization has reached the conclusion its fans came to long ago, deciding to move on from tackle Ereck Flowers. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the Giants will try to find a trade partner for the offensive lineman and, barring that, will release him by 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday.
Giants will release OT Ereck Flowers if he is not traded by 4 p.m. Tuesday, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 8, 2018
Coach Pat Shurmur confirmed this report in talking to reporters on Monday.
Giants will cut or trade Ereck Flowers by 4 pm Tuesday according to Shurmur— TOM CANAVAN (@APTCan) October 8, 2018
The Giants are also confirming it.
Coach Shurmur: We appreciate Ereck Flowers’ efforts with the team...sometimes a change of scenery is good...the reports that are out there right now are accurate.— New York Giants (@Giants) October 8, 2018
The Giants selected Flowers with the ninth overall pick of the 2015 NFL Draft, hoping that he’d be a long-time anchor of their offensive line at left tackle. However, that initial promise never flourished; he’s been the team’s leader in penalties called against him during his tenure while giving up 169 quarterback pressures, the most of any offensive tackle since 2015 according to Pro Football Focus (via Patricia Traina at Forbes.com). The Washington Post has Flowers allowing 18 sacks in 51 games (with 48 starts) as well as 28 penalties over his Giants career.
The writing was on the wall for Flowers’ chances to contribute this year, first by the Giants’ signing of free agent Nate Solder to handle left tackle duties and then by the team declining to pick up Flowers’ $12.525 million fifth-year option in May. The final nail in the coffin came in late September, when Flowers, moved to right tackle, was then benched in favor of Chad Wheeler.
Despite the need for tackle help and depth around the league, it will be hard for the Giants to find a trade partner in time for the team’s reported self-imposed Tuesday afternoon deadline. As Schefter points out, any team to add him would also add Flowers’ $2.39 million base salary. Given Flowers’ well-publicized struggles in the NFL, few teams would want to put forth that kind of cash for someone who may be no more than a bench piece for the rest of the season.
Here's what makes a trade for soon-to-be-former-Giants OT Ereck Flowers challenging: any team trading for him would inherit his guaranteed $2.39 million base salary. Teams probably prefer waiting until he's released.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 8, 2018
As for the Giants, they should have no trouble replacing Flowers. New York currently has three offense tackles on their practice squad — Brian Mihalik, Victor Salako and Jylan Ware — and one of whom will likely be promoted to the 53-man roster once Flowers is off of it.