Giants 2024 free agency tracker: Offseason moves, signings

Why Mina Kimes likes the Brian Burns trade for the Giants (1:00)

Mina Kimes explains how Brian Burns will improve the Giants' defense. (1:00)

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- NFL free agency is off and running, and we're keeping track of every major signing, trade and release of the 2024 offseason, with analysis from our NFL Nation reporters and grades from our experts. The new league year officially began Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET, which means free agent signings can now be made official. The first round of the 2024 NFL draft begins April 25 on ESPN.

Here's a breakdown of every 2024 NFL free agent signing by the New York Giants and how each will impact the upcoming season:

Brian Burns, LB

After acquiring pass rusher Brian Burns from the Panthers via trade, the Giants are signing him to a five-year, $150 million contract.

What it means: The Giants have a big-time pass rusher to pair with Kayvon Thibodeaux. It's not cheap, but Burns plays a premium position and has 38.5 sacks in the past four seasons. Now all the Giants moves make sense. General manager Joe Schoen allowed Saquon Barkley and Xavier McKinney to walk because of positional value. He viewed running back and safety as non-premium positions. Instead, he invested heavily in an edge rusher and the offensive line. Burns was the best pass rusher available this offseason.

What's the risk: It's a lot of money. There is no doubt about that. Burns' deal could be worth up to $150 million -- or $30 million per year. The explosive pass rusher is coming off a year where he had just 8.0 sacks. But he did have a pass rush win rate of 21.6% (ninth in the NFL). Still, this is a ton of money for a player with just one 10-plus sack season. The expectations are going to be high in New York. How will he handle the pressure? He wasn't especially happy this past year in Carolina.

Drew Lock, QB

The Giants have reached a one-year deal with former Seattle Seahawks quarterback Drew Lock, a source told ESPN.

What it means: The Giants have their veteran backup behind Daniel Jones. They also have Tommy DeVito in the quarterback room. The likelihood, barring a setback, is that Jones will be the Week 1 starter. It also doesn't affect whether the Giants will take a quarterback in the draft. Lock, 27, has proved to be a serviceable fill-in option. That should be his role with the Giants.

What's the risk: They guaranteed Lock $5 million. If the Giants add a quarterback in the first round of the draft, that will be a crowded -- and expensive -- quarterback room. The Giants needed to add a contingency to the quarterback room in case they don't draft a quarterback, and Lock was the best option available.

Devin Singletary, RB

The Giants are giving former Houston Texans running back Devin Singletary a three-year, $16.5 million deal worth up to $19.5 million, a source told ESPN.

What it means: This is part of the plan for the void left by Saquon Barkley's departure. Singletary got a three-year, $16.5 million deal from the Giants, less than half of what Barkley got from the Philadelphia Eagles in free agency. Singletary, who has a connection to general manager Joe Schoen and coach Brian Daboll from their time in Buffalo, has rushed for over 800 yards in each of the past three seasons. He will likely be part of a running back by committee next season, with the Giants expected to add another back in the draft. They could still add another veteran in free agency.

What's the risk: He's not Barkley. Singletary doesn't scare opposing defenses like the 2018 No. 2 pick. But Singletary has proven to be durable, so the Giants can at least count on him to be on the field. Singletary has played in 16 games in four consecutive seasons. Can he produce as the lead back in an offense that just lost its best weapon?

Jack Stoll, TE

Former Philadelphia Eagles tight end Jack Stoll agreed to a one-year deal with the Giants.

What it means: The Giants needed help at tight end. The uncertainty surrounding Darren Waller, who is contemplating retirement, only made it more dire. Stoll was the Eagles' No. 2 tight end last season. He brings a needed blocking element that the Giants offense didn't have last season. Stoll had the eight-best run blocking grade (64.1) among all tight ends last season, per Pro Football Focus. He could be a good complement alongside Daniel Bellinger in run sets with two tight ends.

What's the risk: Stoll would by no means be a replacement for Waller as a receiver. He had five catches for 38 yards last year for the Eagles. The Nebraska product has 20 career catches for 183 yards and is still looking for his first career touchdown after three professional seasons.

Chris Manhertz, TE

The Giants are signing former Denver Broncos tight end Chris Manhertz to a one-year deal, his agent told ESPN.

What it means: The Giants add another tight end to the mix, one day after signing Jack Stoll. It now provides competition at the position with Manhertz, Stoll and Lawrence Cager all signed during the first few days of free agency. Manhertz, much like Stoll, is known for his blocking ability. The 31-year old has played for the Carolina Panthers, Jacksonville Jaguars and Broncos. He has 26 catches for 271 yards and two touchdowns in eight professional seasons.

What's the risk: Not much. Manhertz was signed to a one-year deal and the Giants can get out of the contract if need be. Like Stoll, he's not much of a pass-catcher, so he wouldn't factor much into replacing Darren Waller should the Giants' starter decide to retire.

Aaron Stinnie, G

Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers guard Aaron Stinnie has agreed to terms on a one-year deal with the Giants, a source told ESPN.

What it means: The Giants added a third offensive lineman this offseason, in addition to improving their blocking at tight end. Clearly, this was a priority. Stinnie started 11 games last season at left guard after tearing his ACL and MCL in the 2022 preseason. He is an experienced starter who can, at minimum, provide depth. The Bucs and Giants essentially swapped Stinnie for Ben Bredeson, who signed with Tampa Bay on the same day. Bredeson started 16 games for the Giants this past season at guard and center.

What's the risk: Stinnie was 48th of 63 guards in pass block win rate at 88.9% this past season. He was 49th with a run block win rate of 69.6%. Maybe he improves another year removed from the serious knee injury, but it could be troubling if Evan Neal doesn't prove to be a starting-caliber player and the Giants need more than spot starts from Stinnie.

Austin Schlottmann, G

The Giants are signing guard former Minnesota Vikings guard Austin Schlottmann to a two-year deal, a source told ESPN.

What it means: Schlottmann is the latest veteran interior lineman to join the Giants. What he brings is some positional versatility, having started at center and guard in the NFL. The 28 year old has started 14 games at guard and center in five seasons with the Denver Broncos and Vikings. At the very least, he's probably the Giants' backup center at the moment. He had an impressive 96.6% pass block win rate on 164 pass-block reps at center last season.

What's the risk: Schlottmann was signed to a two-year deal and has only started 14 games in five seasons. He has never started more than four games in any year. It's probably best if the Giants don't need him as a full-time starter.

Nick McCloud, CB

The Giants have tendered cornerback Nick McCloud, a source told ESPN. He is now on a one-year, $2.99 million non-guaranteed deal.

What it means: McCloud is back as a restricted free agent. The two sides tried to reach an agreement on a contract that included guaranteed money, but eventually landed on this right of first refusal tender because the Giants could not afford to let him walk. New York is already short at cornerback, and McCloud played well when given the opportunity last season. He allowed just 58.3% of the passes in his direction as the nearest defender in 2023 to be completed. If the season began today, McCloud would have a strong chance to be the starting cornerback opposite Deonte Banks.

What's the risk: The Giants didn't really want to pay McCloud almost $3 million to potentially be a backup cornerback. They thought his value was less, given that it's hardly a certainty he ends up a starter. The one thing they have working for them is leverage, either before training camp or at final cuts, for a pay cut if necessary. In the meantime, they still have a promising young player at a touch under $3 million. It could actually turn into a bargain.

Isaiah McKenzie, WR

The Giants are signing former Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie.

What it means: It's the New York Bills, in a way, with general manager Joe Schoen and coach Brian Daboll in charge. McKenzie and Singletary are the two newest additions to the group this offseason. The 28-year-old McKenzie provides depth at the wide receiver position. It also sets up a potential competition between Gunner Olszewski and McKenzie to be the team's punt returner. Olszewski and McKenzie are similar players, although Olszewski was the much more productive of the two last season.

What's the risk: McKenzie has never produced consistently as a receiver. He had 11 catches last season for the Colts. He was also suspended for the final four games of the regular season for conduct detrimental to the team. The risk is mitigated by the minimum terms of his deal. It's not a significant financial investment.

Jalen Mills, S

Former New England Patriots safety Jalen Mills reached an agreement on a one-year deal with the Giants, a source told ESPN.

What it means: It gives the Giants another starting option at safety, much needed after Xavier McKinney signed a lucrative new contract with the Green Bay Packers. The Giants have Jason Pinnock in one starting safety spot and Mills should have a chance to start next to him, with third-year player Dane Belton also in the mix. Mills was stuck behind Jabrill Peppers and Kyle Dugger in New England. He wanted to go somewhere with a chance to start. The Giants offer him that opportunity, perhaps for the last time in his career.

What's the risk: He's 29 years old and could be on the downside of his career. At least one source who had watched him in recent years thought he had lost a step. As a result, the veteran defensive back has seen his production and playing time dip. It could be a risk if the Giants are asking him to be a full-time starter at this point of his career. Perhaps Belton can win a starting job. Regardless, a safety group of Pinnock, Mills and Belton seems like a major downgrade and, likely, not good enough. The Giants could still use reinforcements.

Jermaine Eluemunor, OT

The Giants are signing former Las Vegas Raiders offensive tackle Jermaine Eluemunor to a two-year deal.

What it means: The Giants added their second offensive lineman on the opening day of free agency. Eluemunor joins guard Jon Runyan on what will be a remade offensive line. It's much needed, considering the Giants' struggles this past season and, really, for more than a decade. Signing Eluemunor makes sense given his connection to offensive line coach Carmen Bricillo. He can play either guard or tackle, which is valuable considering the uncertainty with right tackle Evan Neal. Eluemunor primarily started at right tackle last season for the Raiders.

What's the risk: Eluemunor was a slightly above average right tackle last season with an 87.9% pass block win rate. That was one spot below Tyre Phillips, who filled in admirably for Neal before suffering a torn quad. Eluemunor also has only been a full-time starter to play more than eight games just twice in his seven professional seasons. Those were the past two seasons in Las Vegas. Some in the league view him as a better spot starter than full-timer.

Jon Runyan, G

The Giants are signing former Green Bay Packers guard Jon Runyan to a three-year deal.

What it means: The Giants start their offensive line makeover with a quality guard in Runyan. It won't be their last move either. New York needed two starting guards and Runyan, the son of a former Eagles legend, has started at least 16 games in each of the past three seasons. His pass block win rate this past year was 94.2%, ninth among all guards. He was 12th the previous season at 94.0%.

What's the risk: It's hard to find too much risk with Runyan at this point. He's relatively young. He has been healthy. He grades out pretty well. The money, $17 million guaranteed, may be more than some industry insiders predicted -- they were thinking around $7 million per season -- but overall, it's a pretty clean signing.

Gunner Olszewski, ST

Punt returner Gunner Olszewski agreed to a one-year extension with the Giants.

What it means: The Giants finally solved their returner woes. They didn't have a returner for years and were a mess in 2023-24 until Olszewksi was signed midseason. He solidified the spot and finished with a healthy 11.9 yards per punt return last season, and returned one for a touchdown. It gives the Giants more stability on special teams with so much turnover coming elsewhere on the roster.

What's the risk: It's money spent on a player who really only contributes on special teams, but it was obvious last season how big a problem it can be when every kick has a better chance of becoming a turnover than a big play. Olszewski also has a history of fumbles. It is what got him cut from the Pittsburgh Steelers, though last season he looked steady during his time with the Giants.

Casey Kreiter, LS

The Giants are bringing back long-snapper Casey Kreiter for the fifth straight season on a one-year deal.

What it means: Kreiter was expected to have options but chose to remain in New York despite there being a new special teams coordinator. His return keeps their kicking operation intact with kicker Graham Gano and punter/holder Jamie Gillan all under contract. We haven't heard much about the Giants' snaps in recent years. That's generally a good thing. In this case, it's because Kreiter is considered a high-end performer at the position.

What's the risk: Very little. Kreiter is 33 years old. But that is not overly concerning for a long-snapper, especially considering he stays in good shape and had a career-best four special teams tackles last season.

Carter Coughlin, LB

Linebacker Carter Coughlin re-signed a one-year deal with the Giants.

What it means: Another special-teamer brough back for another year. Coughlin led the Giants with nine special teams tackles this past season. The Giants have now retained long-snapper Kreiter, returner Ozlewski and Coughlin before the start of the new league year.

What's the risk: Coughlin is another player who doesn't provide much value aside from special teams. He's a linebacker who has played a total of eight defensive snaps the past two seasons. The good news is that his services are not that expensive.