Early on in this year’s NFL offseason, the New York Giants have a massive chunk of their offense potentially heading for free agency.
Both Saquon Barkley and Daniel Jones could hit the free agent market if they don’t agree to contract extensions or get franchise tagged.
Both players are reportedly looking for huge contracts and the Giants haven’t actually been able to lock down either yet.
While they are still trying to work out deals with both, it seems they have made a big decision on how they are approaching both negotiations.
One of these negotiations will actually be dependent upon how the other one turns out.
According to NFL insider Ian Rapoport, if the Giants sign Daniel Jones to an extension, they’ll be using the franchise tag on Saquon Barkley.
From NFL Now: The #Giants and Daniel Jones' new agents are hard at work focusing on a new deal, and there appears to be a glimmer of hope. pic.twitter.com/V6bfsxDmpk
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 2, 2023
Signing Jones long-term while signing Barkley on a year-to-year basis is the best-case scenario for the Giants.
Keeping Jones is the best option they have at quarterback right now and that will likely remain the case over the next few years if the Giants continue to win.
The team was clearly heading in the right direction this past year with Jones under center and they won’t have much to work with in the draft at the position if he continues to win at least 9 games per year.
Meanwhile, Saquon Barkley was the standout player in the offense, but the Giants will have more viable options at running back in the future. It’s also a position that tends to have a shorter shelf life in the NFL.
Saquon is still clearly in his prime and will continue to be a big piece of the Giants’ offense for the next couple of years, but committing to him long-term might be something they regret later on, something they’re seeing with Cowboys and Ezekiel Elliott right now in their division.
It certainly won’t be what Barkley wants, but this looks like the best move for the New York Giants as they try to keep the core of their offense together.