With the defense addressed in free agency, the will now focus on filling the holes on the offensive line. The release of left tackle William Beatty and guard Geoff Schwartz will most likely force more free agent acquisitions. Luckily, there are a few names that would create solid protection at the line of scrimmage.
The first is a man whose name has been thrown around is Seattle Seahawks left tackle,Russell Okung. The sixth overall pick out of Oklahoma State in 2010 looks to be the best option to replace Beatty on the blindside. Okung has not played a full 16-game season in his NFL tenure to date, but when healthy, he as reliable as they come keeping pressure off the quarterback while also setting the edge for the tailback to break free.
Okung is being patient in pursuit of a new contract as he has interest from multiple teams like the Steelers, Lions and the Broncos, who he reportedly took a trip to see yesterday. The lineman is looking for a deal around $11-12 million a year, and with his consistent track record, he could very well receive what he wants.
With that in mind, the Giants still possess $24 million in cap space, and could very well match Okung’s offer
Also on the market is former Broncos lineman, Louis Vasquez. Vasquez is coming off of a Super Bowl victory, and will most likely want to stay on the winning side of things. The irony in that statement is Vasquez just began his free agency tour in Nashville visiting the Titans who are still in a rebuilding stage.
Released to free cap space in Denver, the 28-year-old has played in all sixteen games in the last four seasons with the Broncos, and with his power blocking abilities, he would be a perfect fit on the Giants’ line.
The final free agent the Giants may go after is the former number one overall pick in the Falcons Jake Long. Yes, Long is high risk as he has bounced around the league due to poor performance as well as a torn ACL in his right knee ending his last two seasons. Now healthy, Long could have a rebirth in New York adding a veteran presence to the line at a discounted price not regularly found among first-rounders.
Overall, the Giants are a very appealing team in that they look to be the favorite in the NFC East this upcoming season as well as having star teammates in Odell Beckham Jr., Victor Cruz and Eli Manning who could influence a decision.
Continuing to stack their 2016 roster, the Giants should make a serious push to snatch a lineman off the free agency block very soon.