After six seasons with the New York Giants, wide receiver Sterling Shepard has officially hit the open market. The Giants made the move official on Wednesday morning, voiding the wideout’s contract for a dead cap hit of $4.3 million and allowing Shepard to sign with any team.
Drafted 40th overall in the 2016 NFL Draft, Shepard has long been a key fixture for Big Blue’s offense. Over six seasons, the former Oklahoma Sooner was sensational out of the slot, totaling 362 catches for 4,038 yards and 22 touchdowns. This past season, Shepard seemed poised for another strong campaign, but a torn ACL in Week 3 vs. the Dallas Cowboys caused him to watch Big Blue’s magical run from the sidelines.
While Shepard may be a free agent with a proven track record, his ACL tear will almost certainly hinder his value on the market. With Shepard’s recovery timeline unclear and having just turned 30, a one year “prove it” deal appears to be the most likely outcome for his next contract. While the Giants voided Shepard’s contract, it is still possible — and perhaps likely — that they may be the squad to ultimately sign him, albeit at a much smaller price:
Shepard doesn't figure to have much of a market as he recovers from a torn ACL, so there could be appeal for both sides to bring him back to the Giants when he's healthy.— Dan Duggan (@DDuggan21) February 15, 2023