NY Giants should pursue this veteran free agent right now to bolster secondary

The Giants secondary is looked as a weakness, but not if they add this veteran back
Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys
Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

With training camp almost upon us for the NY Giants, the defense of the team, at least on paper, looks strong. The offense might not be where people would want it, but the defense looks pretty dang good. Well, almost.

The front seven, we should say, looks really good given the trade for Brian Burns in the offseason that pairs him with third-year edge rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux. Before the 2024 season, many had wondered who would give Thibodeaux the extra help on the edge. However, with Burns now in East Rutherford, that help is there, as he helps a defense that also has Dexter Lawrence, Bobby Okereke, Micah McFadden and others.

Missing from that is the Giants secondary, and that’s where the questions lie for this team, especially for the cornerback position. The best player at that spot is Deonte Banks, who had a solid rookie season and is considered the CB1 of the group. Adoree’ Jackson is no longer here and still remains a free agent, although considering the team gave away his number to rookie Andru Phillips, Jackson is likely not coming back. Cor’Dale Flott has a chance to win that second spot behind Banks, but it’s not a given.

The NY Giants should try and sign Stephon Gimore as soon as possible

The Giants brought in veterans like David Long Jr. and most recently, former Jaguars cornerback Tre Herndon. Herndon might have the best chance currently to not only win a roster spot, but be a part of the lead group in training camp. Even with those players, that still might not be enough, especially with the wide receivers the Giants are set to face, especially in their own division in CeeDee Lamb, A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith and Terry McLaurin.

Considering the Giants defense is looked upon as why they should be able to stay in most games this season, they should address the secondary between now and sometime during camp. There are still a couple of veteran free agents who remain unsigned, but the one that the Giants should be targeting is one they know well from being in the NFC East last season in Stephon Gilmore.

Gilmore is 33 years old and has been in the league for 12 years, which might not go with the overall feel of the current Giants team that’s been going younger under the Joe Schoen-Brian Daboll regime. But, what Gilmore can still do is play his position well, which he showed last season for the Dallas Cowboys.

Gilmore finished the 2023 campaign with 68 tackles, 13 pass breakups, two interceptions and one forced fumble. With the departure of Jackson and the free agent loss of Xavier McKinney, the Giants overall secondary could use a boost from a player like Gilmore, who could bring his veteran presence and knowledge of the game to that young Giants secondary and give them the “tricks of the trade,” especially for someone like Banks.

As far as salary goes, Gilmore made around $8 million with Dallas in 2023. The Giants have over $11 million in current salary cap room thanks to Darren Waller’s retirement, so Schoen has the space needed for someone like Gilmore. Granted, the Giants didn’t want to spend on secondary earlier in the offseason for players like Darious Williams and Tre’Davious White.

With Gilmore still not signed and him getting closer towards getting to training camp without a deal in place, maybe the Giants could get him to agree to a contract more on their terms considering they haven’t been looking to overspend on secondary help and have stayed in the bargain range for players they’ve signed so far.

Adding Gilmore to a secondary with Banks, Tyler Nubin and Jason Pinnock would give the Giants defense another piece that can help make it compete in 2024 and if nothing else, keep them in games. If the Giants offense isnt being counted on for things this season, then the defense will need to put in that extra work and if that’s the case, having Gilmore on the other side of Banks for help will do just that.