Yours truly is back from the 2020 NFL Scouting combine, and I’ve been checking the mail. So, here is this week’s Big Blue View mailbag
Jay B asks: What do you think of a swap of Tomlinson for Slay in a Detroit trade seems like that trade could fill a need for both teams. Detroit just cut ‘Snacks’ and Tomlinson is pretty much a young ‘Snacks’ Harrison. Further would you try to get value for Evan Engram in a trade? If someone was willing to offer you a third round pick for him would you take it given Ingram’s injury history? Or are you still not willing to give up on the talent like that just yet? Ingram and Shepard make me really nervous that they can end up getting injured once again and railroading the offense to an extent over the last two years. I think it might be time to move on from Ingram and get some value from him before he gets hurt again.
Ed says: Jay, trading for Darius Slay would make some sense for the Giants. Slay has been a Pro Bowler the past three seasons, is just 29, and is in the final year of a four-year, $48 million contract. The Detroit Lions have said everything from trading him to giving him a new long-term deal is on the table. That said, I don’t think defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson gets it done. Tomlinson is a nice player, but don’t think for a second that he is anywhere close to what Damon Harrison was at his best. There is no comparison.
As for Evan Engram, I have said before I would be willing to listen to offers but I’m not “trying” to trade him. Especially now with the news that Rhett Ellison might retire.
Jerry Panza asks: Ed with all the combine stuff going on I know this is background stuff but I am confounded with Bret Bielema. He seems not happy to be part of the Giants job he had gotten himself. So is he in or halfway in? I don’t think this is good model behavior being projected by this man. Any thing you can add in clarifying where his head is at?
Ed says: Jerry, why are you confounded? Doesn’t everyone in life want to move up the ladder, want to better their lot in life? Bielema took the defensive assistant job with the Giants before the college jobs opened up at Michigan State and Colorado. You’re talking about head-coaching jobs paying millions of dollars per year. Why wouldn’t he seek them, and why would anyone begrudge him trying for them? You would. I would. He didn’t get them, and he will do his job with the Giants as well as he can.
Head coach Joe Judge didn’t seem to have his panties in a bunch over Bielema when he was asked about him at the Combine.
“When you hire good people, there’s going to be interest. That’s a positive,” Judge said. “When people are desired on your staff, that means business is good.”
Seth Friedman asks: Let’s say that NYG decides not to shop at the top of the free agent market, but would rather look for value in players coming off injury or players who are emerging but havent had the right opportunity. Who would you target? Daryl Williams (RT with Carolina) was thought to be an option after 2018 season, but signed a prove-it deal with Carolina. What about Nick Kwiatkowski with the Bears?
Ed says: Seth, for right tackle not a lot of great options for right tackle in free agency, to be honest. I like the idea of signing Williams, who was drafted by Dave Gettleman, to be a versatile veteran depth player. He was used in four spots by the Panthers in 2019. I don’t want to sign another Mike Remmers type as the starter. If you dip into free agency, do better than that.
Chris Hynes asks: There has been a lot of talk as to whom the Giants should target, and the two popular names are Conklin & Ngakoue. However, it takes it two to tango, and in the speed dating of NFL Free Agency these players are going to have a lot of suitors. Honest assessment, how attractive are the Giants as a destination for the premier FAs? We have a rookie coach, with a GM on the hot seat and a second year QB that still has a lot to prove as far as pocket awareness goes.
Ed says: Chris, money talks. Whether it’s New York, Jacksonville, Buffalo, the Miami Dolphins, whatever. Players and agents want to squeeze out every possible dollar. The Giants have slipped a bit, but they are still considered a well-run organization with lots of history and plenty of reasons to feel good about signing with the Giants.
Chris Fiegler asks: By looking at the players at Combine this weekend who do you think will be best fit for Giants?
Ed says: Chris, that’s really impossible to say until we see what they do in free agency. Still, I think Mekhi Becton will be at the top of their board among offensive tackles. You can make a case for Isaiah Simmons. Several other guys. Today, I think Becton is the guy. Tomorrow, who knows? GM Dave Gettleman definitely has a type, and another. guy who fits that type is Auburn defensive tackle Derrick Brown.
Bruce Frazer asks: If by chance Amari Cooper becomes a free agent would it be advantageous for the Giants to place an offer for him? Given that Jason Garrett is now the offensive Coordinator and has worked with Cooper, who is coming into his prime years, does it make sense to sign Cooper versus picking a similar receiver in this year’s draft?
Ed says: Bruce, making a big run at Cooper certainly would not be on my to-do list if I was making decisions for the Giants. The Giants need to spend their big free agent dollars on good defensive players and offensive linemen who can help Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley. The draft is flush with wide receivers. Add to that group that way.