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Free agency rumors: Could the Giants be interested in Cole Beasley?

Might the Giants add the veteran slot receiver?

AFC Divisional Playoffs - Buffalo Bills v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network is hinting that the New York Giants might have more than a passing interest in veteran free agent receiver Cole Beasley.

Garafolo notes that the Buffalo Bills have had interest in a reunion with the 33-year old slot receiver, but there have been a significant number of “moving parts”. Garafolo then adds that there’s significant interest in Beasley around the NFL, and calls out the Giants specifically. He points out Joe Schoen and Brian Daboll’s connection to Beasley as potentially creating a good fit. Beasley has been very productive for Daboll over the last two years, racking up 82 catches in each of the last two years. He had 967 yards and 4 touchdowns in 2020, and 693 yards and one touchdown in 2021.

The Giants 2022 training camp is only just getting started, but we’ve already seen Schoen churn the roster to account for injuries.

Go-to slot receiver Sterling Shepard stands out among the Giants’ injured players at the start of camp. He suffered a torn Achilles in week 15 (December 19th) of 2021 and is still likely still facing a long recovery. The Giants have several other quick receivers who can fill the slot role. However, Beasley is still a quick, precise, and crafty route runner who excels at finding open field, which is Shepard’s specialty. Shepard is also one of the Giants’ most veteran receivers, and none of the replacements on the roster have Beasley’s experience.

It would also be somewhat ironic if Beasley, who was a thorn in the Giants’ side for 8 years with the Dallas Cowboys, became their go-to receiver on third downs.

We don’t know just how eager the Giants are to bring in a 33-year old receiver who is entering into his 11th year of football. Beasley has been productive over the last three years, but has seen his average depth of target, yards after catch per reception, and broken tackle rate all drop over that period.

Apart from Beasley’s age, his potential price tag could be a significant barrier to a reunion between he and Daboll. Garafolo notes that Beasley is waiting for “significant money” and he isn’t going to play for a veteran minimum deal. The Giants currently have a bit more than $5 million in cap space, which they’ll need just to sign mid-season replacements for when injury strikes. That said, they could make moves to free up space under the salary cap if Schoen and Daboll are committed to bringing Beasley in.

Camp might just be getting started, but we already have plenty of intrigue.