If a team wants to land Jason Pierre-Paul in free agency this offseason, the price just got steeper. The Giants, in a financially and football savvy move have placed a non-exclusive franchise tag on the star defensive tackle. This maneuver requires a potential suitor to forfeit two first round picks for Pierre-Paul if they reach an agreement and the Giants do not match the offer within seven days. The Giants believe requiring teams to relinquish first round picks may recede teams advances at a prize of free agency.
Simply put 26-year-old sack maestros do not come around every day, and the Giants recognition of this fact enables them to be proactive in their negotiations not only with Pierre Paul, but with other teams desiring his services. In addition to providing potential teams with a prohibitive price for Pierre-Paul, this tactic provides the Giants time to negotiate while putting a caveat or “poison pill” into any potential negotiations Pierre Paul has with other teams.
Naturally players want a higher salary, often neglecting cap management, while teams and general managers out of necessity are cap-conscious. According to a New York Post Report, the Giants are 18 million under the cap, and prefer Pierre-Paul to be satisfied making 11.5 million per season. Though, if Pierre-Paul does not see a market to his liking before March 2nd, Pierre Paul would receive either a guaranteed salary based on the cap-percentage space typically taken up by defensive tackles, or receive a 20 percent raise for being franchise tagged.
Last season, Pierre-Paul overcame prior back and shoulder issues to record 12.5 sacks last season, including multiple games last season where he clearly dominated along the defensive line. The next few months will be an interesting look at how the Giants, Pierre Paul, and the rest of the league handles this move, and whether any team shows the kind of desire to absorb the penalties the Giants have prescribed to go after the defensive tackle. While the time is ticking, the Giants are providing themselves a bit more to deal with most pressing issue. It’s time to play the waiting and see game Giants fans.