he New York Giants have made their final decisions on a pair of key players heading into the 2022-23 season. NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reported that the team has picked up Dexter Lawrence’s fifth year option, with the team confirming the decision. Additionally, Judy Battista of NFL.com reports the team has also opted not to pick up quarterback Daniel Jones’ option, a move widely expected. Lawrence, 24, was selected with the 17th pick of the 2019 NFL Draft. A defensive tackle out of Clemson, he was selected to the 2019 All-Rookie team by the Pro Football Writers Association (PFWA). That season, Lawrence started all 16 games, recording 38 total tackles, 2.5 sacks, a forced fumble and three tackles for a loss. Since then, his numbers have risen, although he hasn’t been able to replicate his full season of games started.
Lawrence’s fifth-year option will cost the Giants $10.7 million, but comes with a mutual attraction. He recently said he “loved” the team, and the feeling appears to be reciprocated, with the decision keeping him under contract through the 2023 season.
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The decision on Jones, meanwhile, comes to little surprise, with ESPN’s Jordan Ranaan reporting in February that the team was likely to pass on the option. On Wednesday, ESPN’s Dianna Russini reported the team would meet today to make final decisions on his option. The 24-year-old has struggled during his tenure with Big Blue, recording 29 interceptions and 36 fumbles in his three seasons. Still, his standing with ownership appeared safe as team owner John Mara recently gave him a public sign of support not long after admitting the team had “done everything possible to screw this kid up since he’s been here”.
Jones’ Pivotal Fourth Year
Now that the bandage has been ripped and Daniel Jones faces a contract year, perhaps he can focus on the task at hand. It seems that the Duke product has already been preparing for the pivotal season, with the Giants’ official twitter account tweeting out a video of him working out back on April 4th.
A week later he was shown working out at Duke’s facility in North Carolina, which came just days before he reported to New York’s voluntary minicamp. Jones will clearly have to work on his ball control, as his aforementioned turnovers have proven to be a defining aspect of his young career. Additionally, however, he will hope to benefit from a healthy, hungry Saquon Barkley, who has struggled to stay on the field during Jones’ time with the Giants.
Team’s Final Draft Preparations
As indicated by the Russini report, the Giants also met this week to discuss final draft preparations. Rumors have run rampant of who they might draft, and what they may attempt to do with their picks. What appears to be general consensus is that they will look to aid Jones, Barkley and the offense by selecting an offensive tackle with one of their top picks. From there, speculation has included help on defense, at wide receiver and even at quarterback. Our questions are set to be answered in just a few hours.