Apparently, the Giants and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie could not come to terms on a pay cut, as the club announced that it has terminated DRC’s contract. Adam Schefter of ESPN.com first reported that DRC would be released (Twitter link).
Just yesterday, we learned that New York asked the 31-year-old corner (32 in April) — whom they had already planned to move to safety — to take a significant pay cut. He was owed $6.48MM in 2018 and was scheduled to take up $8.5MM of cap space, which the Giants considered to be too steep of a price. We also heard that the two sides were not close to reaching any sort of agreement on a pay reduction, which makes today’s release fairly unsurprising.
One of the reasons DRC likely balked at accepting a reduction in pay is that he believes he can get at least close to what he was scheduled to earn with Big Blue this year on the open market. Indeed, $6.5MM does not seem to be too steep of a price to pay for a starting corner if a team believes he can effectively line up on the outside, and while he is on the wrong side of 30, he should have a couple of quality years left. Per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, DRC does, in fact, want to play as an outside CB again (Twitter link).
The Giants were sitting on just $15MM of cap space before making the move, and that number now jumps to roughly $21MM. They are expected to make a push for top free agent guard Andrew Norwell, who could command up to $12MM per year, and they also need to make other reinforcements along the O-line. New York also needs to invest in its running back and outside linebacker positions this offseason, and they may consider replacing DRC with divisional foe Patrick Robinson. As Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com opines, DRC’s release also makes retaining Ross Cockrell, who performed capably last season and who will become an unrestricted free agent on Wednesday, more important.
Rodgers-Cromartie entered the league in 2008 as a first-round pick of the Cardinals and has since suited up for the Eagles, Broncos, and Giants. He has two Pro Bowls to his credit to go along with 30 career interceptions and six TDs.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.