Updated NY Giants salary cap space with Darren Waller retiring

Darren Waller retiring helps the Giants with the salary cap heading into 2024
Seattle Seahawks v New York Giants
Seattle Seahawks v New York Giants / Kevin Sabitus/GettyImages

The NY Giants have finally learned veteran tight end Darren Waller will not return to the team in 2024 and will be retiring from the NFL. The veteran TE played just one season with the Giants, appearing in 12 games. Big Blue traded with the Las Vegas Raiders to acquire Waller last offseason.

At the time, Waller was one of the highest-paid tight ends in the league after agreeing to a three-year, $51 million extension with the Raiders in September 2022. However, Las Vegas no longer wanted to pay him because health became a significant concern, making Waller available. The G-Men dealt a 2023 third-round pick for Waller, a pick they acquired in a trade that sent wide receiver Kadarius Toney to the Kansas City Chiefs.

While the Giants may regret trading for Waller after playing less than an entire season in East Rutherford, at least his retirement will give the team some leverage heading into 2024. Big Blue will gain $11,625,200 in cap space per Over the Cap. That gives New York some breathing room, as they had just $1,095,031 in cap space for the season before Waller announced his retirement.

What will the NY Giants do with their remaining salary cap space?

With Waller's retirement, the team now has around $12.7 million in cap space. This opens up a realm of possibilities for the G-Men. They could use this cap space to bolster their offensive line depth or provide more support in their secondary. The Giants could also use this money to sign free agents during the regular season, which could be crucial if they face potential injuries.

One name that comes to mind is former Denver Broncos free safety Justin Simmons. Denver waived the All-Pro safety earlier this offseason to save $14.5 million, and Simmons has remained a free agent - he could be a solid fit for the Giants.

The G-Men could also use the extra money to bring in offensive line help. If there's anything the Giants could never have enough of, it's offensive linemen, and last season proved that. Big Blue could pursue offensive guard Greg Van Roten, who last played with the Raiders. The 34-year-old OL has an existing relationship with the Giants' new offensive line coach Carmen Bricillo and offensive guard/tackle Jermaine Eluemunor during their time together in Las Vegas. Van Roten is also a Long Island native and should be affordable if the Giants bring him home to NY.

Whether the Giants choose to spend the added salary cap this summer or during the regular season, it will be interesting to see how GM Joe Schoen uses the extra money. The only thing that is for sure is that Waller won't be suiting up for the Giants in 2024.