Giants Release Wide Receiver, Rework Veteran Tight End’s Contract: Report

Giants cut WR Cody Core

Getty Cody Core #17 of the New York Giants.

The official start of the new NFL year may not kick off for another week or so, but that hasn’t stopped the New York Giants from getting the ball rolling. With news of the team planning to franchise tag star defender Leonard Williams breaking on Tuesday, the already cap-stricken G-Men must begin moving money around.

The team proactively began this action by announcing the release of wide receiver Cody Core and restructuring the contract of tight end Levine Toilolo (per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport) on Monday.

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Core Not Done in New York?

According to ESPN’s Jordan Raanan, there’s a “good chance he returns,” adding that the “door (is) still open” for a reunion down the road as the wideout continues to rehab from injury. Core was due a $500K bonus in the coming weeks and was set to count $2 million against the cap in 2021.

Core missed the entire 2020 season after suffering a torn Achilles in training camp. In return, the Giants missed the services of their most prolific special teams player.

A former sixth-round pick for the Cincinnati Bengals, Core was claimed off of waivers by the Giants at the start of the 2019 season and quickly proved his worth as a key contributor. The 6-foot-3-inch, 205-pound Alabama native would go on to rack up eight special teams tackles that season, the most among all Giants players. Core was rewarded for his special teams expertise last offseason with a new two-year, $4 million contract.


Levine Toilolo Remains With Giants

While Evan Engram’s future remains up in the air, it appears that at least one Giants tight end’s status for 2021 is secure –– albeit on a restricted contract. Toilolo was set to earn $2.95 million in 2021 as part of his two-year, $6.2 million deal he originally signed with the team last offseason.

While details surrounding the official numbers of the restructure have yet to emerge, it almost certainly means that Toilolo will take a pay cut in 2021. As SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano noted, Toilolo’s original salary for this coming season was “way too much for a third tight end who played somewhat sparingly last year.”

Toilolo, 29, was used primarily as a blocker and special teams contributor during his first season in East Rutherford. The former fourth-round pick played 275 offensive snaps in 2020, hauling in five receptions.

Beyond Toilolo and Engram, the Giants currently roster four other tight ends; Kaden Smith, Nakia Griffin-Stewart, Rysen John and Nate Wieting.


Giants Hire Former Lions Exec

Kyle O’Brien, a Long Island native, joined the Giants on Monday, assuming the team’s newly created role of senior personnel executive. The 42-year-old previously manned the role of director of player personnel (2016) and VP of player personnel from (2017-20) over the last five seasons with the Detroit Lions. 

Prior to his stint in Detroit, O’Brien served in an evaluator role under Bill Belichick for the New England Patriots, sharing Foxborough roots with head coach Joe Judge. O’Brien has nearly two decades of NFL experience, and while he’s never previously worked with the Giants organization, his father has. Dr. Stephen O’Brien served as the Giants’ team doctor for eight years, spanning from 1993-2000.

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