The 2013 season was obvious disappoint for the Giants and their fans, as they ultimately missed the playoffs for the fourth time in the last five seasons. While the Giants did avoid a double digit loss season, they also failed to win at least eight games for the first time in almost a decade. The Giants will undoubtedly be looking to improve on key areas through the draft, but veteran experience can’t be undervalued and the 2014 free agent market will have much to offer.
It is no secret the Giants’ pass rush was a key to both of their recent super bowls runs. Unfortunately it’s something they have been lacking in the past two seasons. Seattle’s Michael Bennett will be on the market this offseason and should be a hot commodity. Bennett led the Seahawks with 8.5 sacks despite having to split time with four other defensive ends. The Giants finished tied for 25th in the league with just 34 sacks this past season. With injuries nagging Jason Pierre-Paul, poor play from Mathias Kiwanuka, and Justin Tuck’s future with the team in limbo, Bennett might be the key to the Giants defensive line becoming dominant once again.
In 2011, Fred Davis caught 59 passes for 796 yards in Washington and seemed to be developing into one the NFL’s premier tight ends. Unfortunately, the talented to tight end was injured and had problems off the field in 2012 and has been spending his time on sideline ever since. Myers has been underwhelming in New York and there are whispers that Giants might let him go. Washington seemingly has no interest in signing Davis and Eli Manning could greatly benefit from a big athletic target, especially in the red zone.
Alex Mack should definitely be on the Giants short list for possible free agents signees. Mack, who was drafted by the Browns in 2009, is arguably the best center in football. It’s a long shot that Cleveland won’t resign him themselves because they have lots of cap room, but many teams will be interested and the Giants should be one of them. David Baas, the Giants’ current center, is 32 with laundry list of medical problems and underwent surgeries on multiple body parts when the season ended in 2012. Baas did make it back to start this season but still remained on the injury report in 11 of the 16 games. However, Baas does have a tricky salary cap situation that could hinder the Giants ability to cut him.
There are some pretty big names on the market at receiver including Eric Decker. Although he may be one of Peyton Manning’s favorite targets it’s hard to see him resigning in Denver. Decker will command a lot of money this off-season and the Broncos are stocked at receiver. It’s unlikely the Giants will spend money at receiver as they surely like what they have seen from Rueben Randle and Jerrel Jernigan. However they won’t draw the attention away from Victor Cruz like Decker would. It may seem like Decker is just a beneficiary of having one of the greatest quarterbacks ever throwing him the ball, but Decker caught eight touchdown passes from Tim Tebow two years ago.