With Saquon Barkley and his representatives having turned down offers from the New York Giants with an average annual value of $12.5 million or more, the Giants placed the franchise tag on the star running back and took their contract offer off the table.
Former sports agent and current CBS Sports cap analyst Joel Corry told the ‘Valentine’s Views’ podcast that he was surprised by that move from general manager Joe Schoen.
“Usually you table discussions, that offer remains. Pulling the offer raised eyebrows to me,” Corry said. “That’s an unusual step. Maybe that’s how Schoen is going to do things in the future, but that would send a message to me if I’m the player that this is going to be a truly tough negotiation.”
When the Giants do make another offer to Barkley some time before the July 17 deadline to reach a long-term deal, what will that look like? We recently discussed the idea of whether the Giants’ next offer could actually be for less than previous proposals — something like three years, $30 million, with incentives to push the value higher.
Corry wasted no time shooting down such an idea.
“Not getting done,” said Corry without even letting me finish the sentence. “Not getting done. Two [franchise] tags is $22 million. You’ve gotta give the guy a way to save face in a negotiation. You’re not giving him a chance to save face.
“That’s going to be an important variable. You’ve gotta give him a chance to save face with all the information that’s out there of where the offers are and how the public opinion is he made a mistake in turning it down.
“That’s going to be detrimental to the process. I don’t think you get a deal done at 30 over three.”
If Barkley does end up playing on the $10.091 million tag in 2023, the door is open for the Giants to use the franchise tag again in 2024 at a cost of roughly $12.1 million.
Thus, if Barkley were to simply ride out the franchise tags he would make a shade above $22 million. Which means there has to be more guaranteed money than that in any long-term deal.
With that in mind, Corry said that if the Giants truly want a long-term agreement with Barkley they can’t low ball him at this point.
“You’ve got a huge problem if you do that because whatever you offered him in November when he was a priority over Daniel Jones if you can’t get back to that point, I suspect he’s playing on the franchise tag,” Corry said.
“If you have any offer that is less than the value of two franchise tags over the first two years he’s going to take his chances on the franchise tag.”
Corry said the Giants might be signaling a willingness to let Barkley play on the tag.
“The next step will be where that initial offer comes in for the Giants. If they’re under where they initially were when they negotiated during the season around the bye week then you may have a problem,” Corry said.
“Them pulling the offer to me signals we’re fine if you play on the tag and it’s going to be a deal of our liking as opposed to us really trying to bridge the differences from where we were.”
Does Corry sense the Barkley-Giants negotiations turning nasty?
“The NFL is a deadline driven league. The deadline is July 17 for the long-term deal so I’m not concerned about anything until we get into the 11th hour.,” he said.
“Sometimes how the sausage is made isn’t pretty. Things get acrimonious, they get acrimonious and there’s a deal done, then no harm, no foul. The first step of pulling the offer, that’s a cause of concern on my part.”
Corry believes a deal will get done.
“Cooler heads prevail. They get something done, probably close to the deadline,” he said. “I’d want to do a three (year deal) if I’m a team. Maybe if it’s a four the first two years fully guaranteed, and go from there.”