Giants Trade LB Markus Golden To Cardinals

Hours after their loss to the Eagles, the Giants are dealing away a key defender. They will send Markus Golden back to the Cardinals.

The Cardinals announced they have reacquired Golden in exchange for a 2021 sixth-round pick. Originally a Cards second-rounder, Golden signed with the Giants in 2019 and stayed in New York via UFA tender this offseason. The Cardinals will be on the hook for the remaining $2.6MM of Golden’s UFA tender salary.

Golden has rebounded from the ACL tear that docked his stock in his first Cardinals stay. He led the Giants with 10 sacks last season; in 2020, the 29-year-old edge defender has 1.5 sacks and six QB hits. Golden will head back to a different Cardinals coaching staff, but Steve Keim knows him well from being the GM that drafted him five years ago.

The Cardinals are in better shape than they were when Golden was last with the team. Golden finished his first Arizona stint during the Steve Wilks-led 3-13 season. The Cardinals are now 4-2 under Kliff Kingsbury. And they carried a clear edge need after losing Chandler Jones for the season. Golden, who registered a career-high 12.5 sacks for the 2016 Cards, will now help fill that void.

This trade could double as a chance for Golden to submit quality work ahead of another free agency bid — after limited interest came his way in 2019 or ’20 — and contribute to a potential playoff run. He is due to return to free agency in 2021. Golden obviously cannot do a Thursday-Sunday double, with trade acquisitions needing to pass six COVID-19 tests — each at least 24 hours apart — before practicing with their new teams.

This could be the first of multiple pre-deadline deals for the Giants, who fell to 1-6 despite holding a two-score lead over the Eagles in the fourth quarter Thursday. Although they used the rare UFA tender to retain Golden, they were deploying him as mostly a pass rush specialist. Golden played just 36% of Big Blue’s defensive snaps this season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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21 comments on “Giants Trade LB Markus Golden To Cardinals

  1. mlbnyyfan

    Only a 6th round pick thought they could at least gotten a 4th. Hopefully this is just the beginning. Keep the deals coming.

    • Golden is not that good. If you watch his highlights from last year only 2 or 3 of his sacks were the result of him actually pressuring the QB. The rest were coverage sacks or the QB literally running into his arms.

      Sixth rounders are pretty worthless, but Golden has very little value.

      • rocky7

        Ah, Antonio Brown was a 6th round draft choice by the Steelers…..Julian Edelman even later in the 7th round…kind of disproves your theory about 6th rounders being useless now doesn’t it.

        • Flyby

          by your theory you can disprove the entire draft process. Remember hall of famer Kurt Warner? How about all pros James Harrison or Tony Romo? Wes Welker ring a bell? All never drafted but did pretty well.

          kind of disproves your theory about 6th rounders being worthwhile now doesn’t it since you dont even need to have a draft.

          how about Johnny Manziel, Jamarcus Russel, Vernon Gholston, or even more world renowned Ryan Leaf. Makes 1st round pick seem pretty useless?

          law of averages point to 6th and 7th rounders to be fill in with a small chance of upside along with punters or kickers thrown in.

        • JoeBrady

          rct said ‘pretty worthless’, not ‘completely worthless’.

          Since you could only find 2 guys that are worth something, then you are proving his point.

    • Perksy

      Nah, 6th round is about right. Half the season is over on a 1 year deal, and he is basically just a pass rush specialist.

    • Flyby

      i agree with RCT his stats do not really show his game. Its like when Carmelo Anthony was in his prime … he had a lot of points but the guy had to take half the teams shots if not more to get those points and the teams really went no where but melo looked great.

        • Flyby

          its actually pretty good analogy .. basically if you look at one stat (sacks/points) which is usually what you base the player on in their position they look pretty good but if you look at the full picture they don’t really amount to much.

          but lets see what you have added to the conversation other than insults before my post ….. …. after my post ….. …

          carry on then

  2. wagner13

    I was worried someone would overpay for Golden based on past production, but this is fair compensation. This seems like a great idea for Arizona, who just lost Chandler Jones. I still do not trust Vance Joseph as a defensive coordinator, however

    • Flyby

      I think thats fair value but i think the giants value him higher than that so it would take a little more than that for the giants to let him go. Probably a 4th and future year 6th or more.

    • You could easily get a 3rd and honestly with how the TE position has looked this year I wouldn’t be shocked if they managed to get a 2nd.

      • Perksy

        Based on production and injury history I don’t see much more than a 4th for him. Plus the other teams know the Giants are down on him.

        • Ak185

          Too inconsistent for anything more than a fourth, but enough talent to warrant that. Engram hasn’t been a headcase and is versatile in where he can line up, despite a lack of blocking ability. The thing teams will wonder is whether a more consistent setting will breed more consistency in him as a player. I think you’re right in the compensation (and Flyby, I just want to say that I think you’ve had some great analysis in these comments on this article).

          • Flyby

            Thank you AK,

            Its the versatility i think that gets him the plus because they will even have him on round abouts, line him out wide, and if i remember right they even lined him up in the backfield as a FB. It gets you a tiny bit more than just the 4th by itself.

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