Giants Starter, Ex 1st-Rounder Set to Leave New York, Says Analyst

Evan Engram expected to walk in free agency

Getty Giants TE Evan Engram celebrates with teammate Saquon Barkley.

In what has become a customary practice in recent years, the Evan Engram trade talks came and went at the November 2nd deadline, yet the former first-rounder remains on the New York Giants roster. However, that is finally expected to change this coming offseason.

According to NJ.com’s Darryl Slater, Engram “figures to play out his deal and then walk,” this summer. “He is playing 2021 on the fifth-year option in his rookie deal, so he is about to hit free agency for the first time next offseason,” Slater added. “He has mostly disappointed since Gettleman’s predecessor, Jerry Reese, drafted him 23rd overall in 2017. Presuming the Giants don’t do much in 2022 free agency — since they’re pinched for cap space — Engram signing elsewhere could help them get a compensatory draft pick in 2023.”


Engram’s Future: Compensatory Picks, Salary Cap & Upside

While Engram could very well sign a lucrative enough deal to fetch the Giants a compensatory pick similar to what his rumored trade value was on the market (the fifth-to-sixth-round range), that pick wouldn’t be available to New York until 2023. As far as the G-Men’s cap situation, they’re projected to be approximately $4.3 million under the $208.2 million salary cap next season (per Over the Cap). With that said, as the Giants proved this past offseason and so many other franchises have proven since, if a team wants a certain player, money can be moved around to ensure that team gets their guy. Thing is, when it comes to Engram, he may just no longer be the Giants’ guy.

Even Engram’s biggest detractors can admit the Giants haven’t put him in the greatest position to succeed. If you ever took a glimpse at the leaders in drops across the NFL, they tend to be some of the more productive players in football. Currently, Tyreek Hill, Alvin Kamara, Ja’Marr Chase and A.J. Brown are just some of the big names that rank within the top-seven leaders in dropped passes this season. In other words, for all his flaws, there’s a chance Engram can be a productive addition to a passing offense this offseason — and considering his combination of size, speed and athleticism, chances are more than a few offensive coordinators would be willing to bank on that (with their owner’s money).

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Engram Looks to Build on Improving Production

While Engram’s season output remains relatively lackluster, the Ole Miss product has begun to flash some playmaking skills over recent weeks. In two of his last three games, Engram has averaged 41 receiving yards while hauling in a touchdown in back-to-back weeks. His most recent score, a 30-yard leaping snap over Raiders safety Johnathan Abram, was just Engram’s third receiving touchdown over his last 24 games.

“It was cool, yeah. It was cool. It felt good,” Engram said with a smile, when asked how it felt to hear the crowd erupt on his score. “Mainly, just really felt good just making a play for the team. We worked that play a lot this week and for it to come down and cash in, that was big. So it felt good.”

“It’s a big play, a play that we worked on all week. We knew what kind of coverage and the kind of defense they were going to play and (Daniel Jones) made a perfect throw. Literally, a perfect throw and trusted me with it. I just went up and made a play for the team,” Engram said.

Engram will look to keep up his budding play following the Giants’ Week 10 bye. The team will return to action in Week 11 for a Monday night tilt with the defending Super Bowl Champions, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where they’ll need all the production then can get out of Engram.

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