Jadeveon Clowney is beginning to jump start the free agency process, already developing a short list of teams he wants to play for in 2020 and beyond. Per Ralph Vacchiano of SNY, the New York Giants are one of the teams on Clowney's wish list.
While Vacchiano did not list other teams Clowney wants to play for, it makes sense per Over The Cap), giving them the flexibility to give Clowney an extraordinary amount of cash in a few weeks. This isn't factoring to the salary cap expected to come into effect this offseason.. New York has a projected $74 million in cap space (
Clowney can receive the big contract he wants with the Giants, but Vacchiano is also reporting he could be looking at a contract worth $22-23 million per year. The Giants have the money to give Clowney that type of deal, but even that contract may put him out of their price range.
"Everybody wants an elite guy," Giants head coach Joe Judge said at the combine last week. "But you have to find ways, if you don't have necessarily that one elite guy, of getting production out of maybe two to three other players that complement each other."
There is reason for the Giants to shy away from Clowney and not pay him that kind of money. The sack totals have never been high for talented defensive end, who has never recorded double-digit sacks in a season (career-high 9.5 in 2017). Clowney only had three sacks last season, but he was also hampered for the majority of the second half with a core muscle injury. Despite the injury, Clowney still finished with 31 tackles, four forced fumbles, 13 quarterback hits and 47 pressures in 13 games.
Despite having just 12 sacks over the last two seasons, Clowney has 122 pressures during that same span. While the sack totals are a deterrent (just 32 over six seasons), Clowney has a knack for finding the football and does get to the quarterback. If teams are looking for complete edge rushers, there aren't many better than Clowney. The pressure rate and ability to stop the run could be enough for the Giants to take a shot at signing Clowney.
New York is in the process in revamping its defense and finding a very good pass rusher to anchor the unit. Perhaps Clowney is the big-ticket free agent the Giants will land with all that money to spend.