New York Giants: 5 internal free agents to keep and 5 to let walk away

Leonard Williams, New York Giants. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Leonard Williams, New York Giants. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /
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New York Giants
Markus Golden, New York Giants. Sam Darnold, New York Jets. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

Number 2

Go – Markus Golden. OLB, UFA (29, $3.75M)

10. That’s the number of sacks Markus Golden had in 2019. Even with the double-digit total from last year, the New York Giants should let him walk away. Last year Gettleman signed the former Mizzou and Arizona Cardinals linebacker after the rest of the league passed on him. Golden was familiar with then defensive coordinator James Betcher’s complicated blitzing scheme from their time together in Arizona, making him a good fit.

The G-Men took a chance and it paid off. As it turned out, 10 was the second-highest sack total of his career. It’s safe to say Golden has hit his ceiling. Sportrac estimates he’s worth around $13M next year. It’s unfathomable Golden would get so much money, based on finishing 16th in the league for one statistical category. If that’s the market then Gettleman has to overpay for someone else with a proven track record. Besides, Betcher is gone which greatly diminishes Golden’s value to Big Blue.

Stay – David Mayo, MLB, UFA (27, $850K)

It seemed like David Mayo came out of nowhere to be an impact player for the New York Giants defense. Actually, he did. Signed just a few days before the opener in Dallas, Mayo played in all 16 games. Due to injuries to other middle linebackers, he became a starter in Week 4 and stepped up to the challenge.

He was always around the ball, as evidenced by his 82 tackles. It’s tantalizing to think about Mayo and Ryan Connolly holding down the middle of Big Blue’s 3-4 defense in 2020. Ogletree is gone, eliminating one obstacle. Even if the G-Men double his 2019 salary, or offer him a two to three-year package somewhere in that annual value, it’s a bargain.