The Giants did not activate running back Jonathan Stewart from injured reserve before the Thursday deadline. Per league rules, Stewart is stuck on IR and barred from playing again in 2018.
A foot injury landed Stewart on IR in September, but the Giants activated a three-week use-it-or-lose-it window by bringing him back on the practice field in November. Because he was not activated, Stewart may well have played his final game in a Giants uniform.
The Giants signed Stewart to a two-year deal in March with a base value of $6.9MM. However, the Giants can 86 the final year of his deal this offseason with just $250K in dead money. It would be the logical move for the Giants since rookie Saquon Barkley has solidified himself as a star and does not require an expensive veteran backup. With a number of holes to fill, the Giants will likely look to add a running back that is cheaper, younger, and perhaps better than the 31-year-old Stewart.
Stewart, who turns 32 in March, had just six carries for 17 yards in his three games with the Giants. He earned his first Pro Bowl nomination with nearly 1,000 rushing yards in 2015, but he averaged just 3.6 yards per carry in his final two seasons with the Panthers.
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