The NY Giants began making roster cuts Wednesday to free up space under the salary cap, which is believed to settle between $180 and $183 million this offseason, releasing wide receiver Golden Tate and linebacker David Mayo.
Moving on from the pair of veterans was a necessity, and likely not the last moves to be made prior to the NFL’s new league-year beginning on March 17, as the NY Giants previously had just $486,000 in spending flexibility this offseason.
However, after moving on from Tate and Mayo the Giants now have approximately $4.22 million in cap space, the 18th most in the NFL, and one of just 21 teams currently under the cap, as of Wednesday evening.
Releasing Tate freed up $6.1 million in cap space, while the NY Giants absorbed a $4.7 million dead-money charge, and cutting Mayo created an additional $2.3 million in cap space.
Signing Tate was one of the greatest failures of Dave Gettleman’s tenure as general manager, days after trading Odell Beckham Jr. to the Cleveland Browns, Tate and the Giants agreed to a four-year pact that guaranteed $23 million at signing. That money could have been much better spent by allocating it to bolstering the offensive line, improving one of the league’s most consistent pass rushes or shopping at the top of the defensive back market during the 2019 offseason.
After finishing 6-10 last season, one win shy of winning the NFC East and making the postseason for the first time since 2016 and only the second since 2011, the NY Giants must go shopping via free agency and the NFL Draft for a premier No. 1 wide receiver, and continue adding playmakers as well as offensive line help around third-year quarterback Daniel Jones, in what could be a make-or-break season for the signal caller.