The Pros and Cons of Giants Free Agents James Bradberry, Blake Martinez


If an NFL team has money to spend, they spend that money.

The Giants did that on Monday when the NFL Free Agency’s negotiation phase opened. General Manager Dave Gettleman was busy helping the needy defense and provided $ 91 million to get cornerback James Bradberry, center-back Blake Martinez, and franchise defensive tackle Leonard Williams. All three will be starters next season.

Here’s a look at how the Giants started the free agency and where to go on Day 2:

– George Young, former General Manager of the Hall of Fame, always said: “Everyone hits the free hand for a reason.” Yup. The players that a team considers to be irreplaceable rarely come onto the open market. This should be taken into account when analyzing the upcoming signatures from Bradberry (three years, $ 45 million) and Martinez (three years, $ 30 million). Both are 26 years old, in their prime and healthy, and the teams they designed allowed them to go out the door. Think about it.

In the case of Martinez, there must be something about him that the Packers didn’t love, considering that the guy led the NFL with 114 solo duels last season. The Packers were unwilling to pay more than $ 8 million a year to keep Martinez, although he is very smart, can line up the entire defense and can get ball carriers on the ground. The Packers didn’t think Martinez had made enough chunks and considered him suspicious in the coverage. He does not fill the statistics sheet with things like losses, sacks or interception. The key for the Giants is to put someone next to Martinez who can pull back and cover from the inner linebacker point. This person is not David Mayo, who recently signed a three-year contract, and it is not Ryan Connelly who is returning from reconstructive knee surgery.

Martinez’s boundaries shouldn’t be lost for new head coach Joe Judge. Not after Judge had worked for Bill Belichick for the past eight years.

“What I learned from Coach Belichick was very simple: be flexible in your staff,” said Judge. “Don’t try to push round pens into square holes. Find out what you have. Let them show their strengths. Don’t attend a meeting and tell me what you don’t have in a player. Don’t tell me tell me what you can do, that you can’t do certain things, and then we as a trainer will find out because that’s our job, how we can use that. It’s our responsibility. Everyone has something they do can do. “

For $ 10 million a year, Martinez can do a lot better.

Giants James Bradberry, Blake Martinez
James Bradberry, Blake MartinezGetty Images (2)

– Bradberry is best used as a press corner near the scrimmage line, where it can use its size and strength to nudge recipients to prevent them from receiving free publications. Bradberry is not one of the rapporteurs who is best when he can run and catch up with a receiver at speed. He works best in a confined space and fights for the ball with the receiver. This is the kind of cornerback that Bill Belichick is looking for in New England, and it looks like the kind of cornerback that Judge is defending would like to have.

Bradberry was able to assert himself against opponents such as DeAndre Hopkins, Mike Evans and Julio Jones during his time with the Panthers. Is it a classic switch-off corner? No. Is he the No. 2 corner in an excellent defense? Probably. However, this is a free agency and good players are overpaid. The Giants were interested in Byron Jones, but does anyone think Jones should now be the highest paid cornerback in the league? The Dolphins, who had money to burn, burned a bunch of them with the $ 82.5 million five-year deal for Jones, with $ 57 million guaranteed.

– On the second day of the free agency, the Giants added Levine Toilolo, a towering (6-foot-8) that blocks the tight end. Toilolo will fight for a roster position and will most likely get one based on his experience and ability to line up with the scrimmage and help in the game. With eight touchdowns in seven seasons, he only makes occasional contributions as a pass catcher.

Next, it would be advisable for Gettleman to look for someone with even a hint of pass-rush ability. The Giants asked about Jordan Jenkins, an external linebacker with a total of 15 sacks in the last two seasons for the Jets. Markus Golden, with 10 bags at the top of the Giants in 2019, is still out there. The NFL Draft won’t bring a significant edge rusher, and the returning duo of Lorenzo Carter and Oshane Ximines need help.