Cor’Dale Flott

Giants CB Cor’Dale Flott On Track To Start

Adoree’ Jackson remains available in free agency. In addition to work with the Giants, Jackson overlapped with new DC Shane Bowen during his Titans stay. But the Giants are moving in a different direction.

Not expected to re-sign the three-year starter, the Giants will first see if one of their younger cornerbacks can win the starting job opposite first-rounder Deonte Banks. Cor’Dale Flott would be the starter if the season opened today, Giants secondary coach Jerome Henderson said (via the New York Post’s Ryan Dunleavy).

A report earlier this month suggested Flott, primarily a slot defender through two seasons, had a good chance at the boundary job opposite Banks. This would be a transition for the former third-round pick, who was drafted to man a slot post in New York. But the team’s plans have changed at that spot, too. Another third-round corner, Dru Phillips, may be the lead candidate — with Darnay Holmes as insurance — to work inside.

Pro Football Focus did not grade Flott (13 career starts in the slot) well in 2023, ranking him 101st at the position. The 6-foot-2 cover man did drop his completion percentage-allowed (as the closest defender) number from his 2022 rookie year, lowering it from 63% in 2022 to 59.6%. Veteran Nick McCloud and 2023 sixth-rounder Tre Hawkins stand to represent training camp competition here, as camp work will be more relevant to Big Blue’s lineup decisions compared to OTAs.

Hawkins emerged at last year’s training camp but was benched early in the season, moving Jackson — temporarily relocated to the slot over Flott — back to his usual boundary position. But Henderson and Brian Daboll‘s early endorsements of Flott point to a clear favorite going into camp this year. McCloud is also working in the slot at OTAs, per’s Jordan Raanan. Given Flott and Holmes’ slot experience, the Giants have some fallback options if their early plan does not pan out.

The Giants going with Flott would mark a transition. The team has carried veteran cornerback contracts on its payroll for a while. Jackson signed a three-year, $39MM deal in 2021. That contract overlapped with the three-year, $45MM pact James Bradberry signed in 2020. The Giants, who released Bradberry following the 2022 draft, steadily moving on from vets at corner makes sense due to the rising costs elsewhere on their roster. In addition to Daniel Jones no longer being on a rookie contract, the team has extended Dexter Lawrence and Andrew Thomas. The trade for Brian Burns produced an extension (five years, $141MM) that doubles as the NFL’s third-most lucrative pact for an edge rusher.

Costs are low across the Giants’ secondary, with the team not matching the Packers’ Xavier McKinney offer a year after failing to re-sign Julian Love. The team has Jason Pinnock and second-rounder Tyler Nubin positioned to start at safety, though Raanan adds Dane Belton worked alongside Nubin with the starters at OTAs. Versatile veteran Jalen Mills potentially factoring in. Experience questions will certainly apply here, but Banks’ $3.1MM cap number currently tops the list of Giants CB expenses for 2024.

Latest On Giants’ Cornerback Situation

After a short-lived slot experiment last year, Adoree’ Jackson returned to his traditional boundary role for the Giants. But the team has not re-signed the veteran cornerback, who played out a three-year deal in 2023. The Giants may be in the market for mid-offseason help.

But the team has some in-house candidates to replace Jackson. An early favorite may well have emerged. Brian Daboll mentioned Cor’Dale Flott as a player the team believes in, per the New York Post’s Paul Schwartz, signaling a potential position change for the primary slot corner.

The Giants drafted Flott in the 2022 third round and have mostly deployed him as a slot piece, but with Jackson out of the picture, the team may be grooming the LSU alum for perimeter work. Flott, 22, played 518 defensive snaps last season. That work came for a Giants team that featured Jackson opposite 2023 first-rounder Deonte Banks. The latter will be one of New York’s starting outside corners to begin the season; Flott may well be the other.

Pro Football Focus did not grade Flott well in 2023, slotting him 101st at the position. The 6-foot-2 cover man did drop his completion percentage-allowed (as the closest defender) number from his rookie year, lowering it from 63% in 2022 to 59.6%. Flott will need to hold off the likes of Nick McCloud and Tre Hawkins. The latter, a sixth-round pick out of Old Dominion, impressed during the Giants’ 2023 training camp — to the point the Giants kicked Jackson inside to accommodate the rookie. But Don Martindale quickly benched Hawkins, scrapping the training camp experiment and moving Flott into a central role.

As for how the Giants will address the slot position, Schwartz adds third-round rookie Andru Phillips may be positioned to take over. Phillips will receive “every opportunity” to win Big Blue’s slot job. The team re-signed veteran slot player Darnay Holmes, but after it chose Phillips 70th overall, the former appears an insurance option. A Banks-Flott-Phillips trio appears the Giants’ preferred path, though offseason and training camp work could certainly change that.

The Giants have used a third-round pick on a corner in three of the past four drafts. The first of those, Aaron Robinson, has seen his career skid off track. Commandeering the starting outside job opposite Jackson in 2022, Robinson — chosen 71st overall in 2021 — missed all of last season due to injury. Robinson suffered ACL and MCL tears in October 2022 and landed on the Giants’ reserve/PUP list last season. Daboll’s latest assessment of the former starter does not bode well; the third-year coach said Robinson remains with the Giants’ rehab group at this point in the offseason.

If the Giants are to consider veteran assistance, Jackson joins some other notable names available. Patrick Peterson and Stephon Gilmore are available ahead of their age-34 seasons. Younger options include Steven Nelson, J.C. Jackson, Ahkello Witherspoon and ex-Giants Fabian Moreau and Eli Apple.

Giants Work Out William Jackson; Latest On Team’s CB Plans

Using two rookie starters at cornerback has surfaced as a potential Giants strategy, with sixth-rounder Tre Hawkins impressing during his first NFL training camp. But the team is still on the hunt for help at the position.

William Jackson is on the Giants’ radar, per Aaron Wilson of KPRC2, who adds a workout is scheduled (Twitter link). Teams are checking in on the former first-round pick. Jackson, 30, met with the Ravens earlier this month. The workout occurred Tuesday, Ryan Dunleavy of the New York Post notes.

After Don Martindale‘s former team took a look at the ex-Bengals starter, the second-year Giants DC will determine a fit. Jackson worked as an NFC East starter in 2021, but a disastrous 2022 tanked his value. The Commanders benched Jackson early and then traded him to the Steelers — for a low-end return that ended up not conveying — at the deadline. With Ronald Darby signing for just $1.7MM, it would surprise if Jackson were able to secure more than the veteran minimum given his most recent season.

Washington inked Jackson to a three-year, $40.5MM deal in 2021. A 48-game starter with the Bengals, Jackson loomed as one of the top free agents on a 2021 market impacted by the COVID-19-induced salary cap reduction. The veteran still cashed in, but the tide turned for him early in 2022. Commanders DC Jack Del Rio benched Jackson in Week 5, leading to the trade to Pittsburgh. A back injury, however, kept him from suiting up for the Steelers. Although they designated Jackson for return ahead of a potential Week 18 win-and-in game, Jackson was never activated. He received his walking papers in March.

Hawkins is not a lock to start for the Giants, but first-rounder Deonte Banks is. Banks is set to join Adoree’ Jackson in the Giants’ lineup. The Giants have experimented with Jackson in the slot during camp, a configuration that would allow Martindale to use Banks and Hawkins on the outside. The team has two slot options — in Darnay Holmes and 2022 third-rounder Cor’Dale Flott — as well, but the Dunleavy adds the Giants going with a Banks-Hawkins-Jackson trio to start the season remains in play. This would be an interesting ask of Jackson, a career-long boundary corner, and shine a spotlight on Hawkins.

Additionally, Aaron Robinson, a Week 1 starter last season, remains on the team’s active/PUP list due to the knee injury he sustained early in the year. Robinson remaining on the PUP list after the Giants finalize their roster on August 29 would mean a mandatory four absences to start the season. Considering Robinson has not practiced yet, that scenario seems likely.

CB Rumors: Jackson, Lions, Jaguars, Apple

Adoree’ Jackson served as the Giants‘ No. 1 cornerback last season, his second with the team. Despite coming off injury, Jackson fared well against Justin Jefferson in the Giants’ wild-card win. But the team is experimenting on a potential shift in the veteran’s role during training camp. Jackson has seen extensive time in the slot in camp, and Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News notes the prospect of Jackson in the slot and Deonte Banks and Tre Hawkins outside is viable.

The Titans used Jackson as an outside corner during his Tennessee tenure, and the Giants stationed Darnay Holmes in the slot last year. They also drafted Cor’Dale Flott as a slot option in last year’s third round. But Holmes has struggled during camp, per Leonard. Hawkins, chosen in the sixth round out of Old Dominion, does not have slot experience. Jackson’s willingness as a tackler would benefit the Giants if they followed through on this, though the move is not set in stone. Holmes still operated as the team’s lead slot defender in a joint practice against the Lions on Wednesday, Dan Duggan of The Athletic tweets. Hawkins being in consideration for a regular role would be notable for a Giants team that struggled for CB depth last year.

Here is the latest from NFL secondaries:

  • Emmanuel Moseley‘s cleanup procedure on the ACL he tore last year has led to an unexpected delay in his return. Moseley reported to camp late due to the surgery, and the Lions placed the free agent signing on the active/PUP list. While Dan Campbell said last week the team expected Moseley back soon, the Detroit Free Press’ Dave Birkett notes no timetable exists for the ex-49er’s return, adding that he may not be a lock to start the season on time. This surgery has provided another delay for Moseley, who signed a one-year, $6MM deal that came with $2MM guaranteed. Campbell confirmed Moseley’s absence to start camp was excused.
  • Fellow UFA addition Cameron Sutton and Jerry Jacobs have worked as Detroit’s starting cornerbacks in camp, and while the return of Moseley will give the Lions another starter-level corner, rookie UDFA Starling Thomas has made enough of an impression that Birkett added he is a good bet to make the 53-man roster. He of a 4.28-second 40-yard dash at UAB’s pro day, Thomas has been running with the Lions’ second-stringers at corner alongside Will Harris.
  • Few battles for starting spots are transpiring in Jacksonville, but the Jaguars are holding one at nickel corner. Despite bringing back Tre Herndon on another one-year deal, the Jags are pitting the sixth-year veteran against several players for the slot role. Second-year players Gregory Junior (Round 6) and Montaric Brown (Round 7) join sixth- and seventh-round rookies Erick Hallett and Christian Braswell in vying for this job, per Michael DiRocco of Fifth-round safety Antonio Johnson has mixed in here as well. Herndon re-signed on a fully guaranteed $2.58MM deal. Formerly surpassing 900 defensive snaps in back-to-back years, Herndon finished with just 416 last season.
  • Eli Apple‘s Dolphins deal is worth $1.6MM over one season, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald notes. Incentives could take the veteran corner’s contract up to $2.28MM. While the $1.6MM is not entirely guaranteed, the former top-10 pick received a $250K signing bonus.

Latest On Giants’ Slot CB Competition

Earlier this offseason, it appeared the Giants were prepared to try Cor’Dale Flott as a perimeter corner, despite his experience coming from the slot. A change to that approach has taken place, which could affect more than just the second-year pro.

Flott shared first-team snaps at the slot corner position with Darnay Holmes during spring practices, as detailed by Dan Duggan of The Athletic (subscription required). The up-and-down nature of the latter’s career to date has seen him play between 37% and 59% of defensive snaps across his three years in the league, the majority of which have come in the slot.

The former fourth-rounder’s clearest path to retaining the starting slot role likely would have been Flott earning a full-time gig as a boundary corner. The fact that he is slated to once again play on the inside, however, could leave Holmes in danger of failing to make the roster at his current cost. Entering the final year of his rookie contract, the UCLA product is set carry a cap hit of $2.9MM this season, and the Giants (who hold the fourth-least cap space at the moment) would see $2.7MM in savings by cutting or trading him.

In light of that, along with the fact that he was drafted by the current front office led by GM Joe Schoen, Duggan names Flott as the likely favorite to win out the starting role on the inside. The third-rounder made 11 appearances (six starts) as a rookie, totaling 26 tackles, two pass breakups and a forced fumble. An expanded workload could yield an uptick in production, something which would in turn help a Giants secondary which ranked middle of the pack against the pass in 2022.

Training camp and the preseason will, of course, offer a clearer outlook of the Giants’ plans with Flott and Holmes. Given the financial downside to retaining the latter, it will be worth watching how the team continues to split usage rates between the two heading into their final roster decisions.

Giants Notes: Flott, McCloud, Cowden

Although they still have a need at wide receiver, we learned yesterday that the Giants are not presently expected to acquire free agent DeAndre Hopkins. With Hopkins eyeing a $15MM/year contract, and with New York boasting less than $4MM in cap room, much would have to change for the club’s interest in Hopkins to go beyond the exploratory stage.

Here are a few more Giants-related items:

  • As Ryan Dunleavy of the New York Post (subscription required) writes, the Giants believe that second-year pro Cor’Dale Flott — who was drafted as a slot corner — is better-suited to man the boundaries. That could mean that Darnay Holmes will reprise his role as the club’s primary slot defender, but the team could also gain much-needed cap space (about $2.5MM) by cutting Holmes. If Flott shows improvement as an inside option, or if UDFA Leonard Johnson should impress, Holmes may become a release/pay cut candidate.
  • The Giants lost safety Julian Love to the Seahawks in free agency this offseason, and as Dunleavy writes in a separate piece, Big Blue is shifting 2022 waiver claim Nick McCloud to safety on a full-time basis. Per Dunleavy, McCloud will compete with free agent signee Bobby McCain and incumbents Jason Pinnock and Dane Belton for the starting safety job alongside Xavier McKinney. McCloud, like Love, offers positional versatility and started eight games at corner in 2022, so even if he works primarily at safety, DC Wink Martindale may still use him elsewhere in the defensive backfield.
  • According to Dunleavy, first-round rookie Deonte Banks is now lining up as a starting boundary corner opposite Adoree’ Jackson after working with the second-team defense during the first week of OTAs.
  • The Giants recently added Ryan Cowden to their front office, and per the team’s official website, Cowden’s title will be executive advisor to the general manager. Cowden, who actually interviewed for New York’s GM job last year — a job that ultimately went to Joe Schoen — ended the 2022 campaign as the Titans’ interim GM, but Tennessee elected to hire Ran Carthon for the permanent gig. Cowden and Schoen worked together in the Panthers’ front office from 2000-07, so Schoen is adding a familiar and experienced sounding board to his personnel department.
  • Last week, we heard that the Giants and franchise-tagged running back Saquon Barkley are no closer to coming to terms on a long-term contract than they have ever been. It appears that guaranteed money is the biggest sticking point, though it is unclear what the Giants have offered in that regard, nor the degree to which those offers fall short of what Barkley might be seeking.

Giants QB Daniel Jones To Play In Week 5

OCTOBER 7: Jones will play against the Packers in London. The Giants took the fourth-year quarterback off their injury report. The Giants ruled out Taylor, however. Webb will back up Jones.

OCTOBER 6: The Giants will be without four starters this weekend. Wide receivers Kenny Golladay and Kadarius Toney, outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari, and cornerback Cor’Dale Flott did not make the flight to London for Sunday’s game against the Packers.

According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport (on Twitter), Golladay suffered a sprained MCL during Sunday’s win over the Bears. It sounds like this would be a temporary absence for the veteran wideout, although the Giants won’t have any extra time following their trip across the Atlantic. Despite earning his first start of the season on Sunday, Golladay still isn’t a major factor in the Giants’ offense. Through four appearances, he’s hauled in two catches on six targets.

Toney has been dealing with a hamstring injury that’s forced him to miss the past two games. There was some optimism that he could return this weekend after he was a limited participant on Wednesday, but he didn’t practice today.

“He’s done everything we’ve asked,” offensive coordinator Mike Kafka said today (via ESPN’s Jordan Raanan). “He’s practiced hard when he’s practicing. It’s unfortunate, but he’s one of those guys that does everything we asked and is working his tail off in the training room and in the meeting rooms. He does a great job with that.”

There is some good news on the injury front. Per Aaron Wilson of, Daniel Jones is “trending in the right direction” for this weekend. The QB has been a limited participant this week while nursing an ankle injury, but he made the flight to London and is expected to give it a go. With backup Tyrod Taylor likely sidelined with a concussion, the Giants will probably promote Davis Webb from their practice squad for some extra depth.

Giants CB Cor’Dale Flott To Start In Week 2

Giants starting cornerback Aaron Robinson will miss several weeks following his appendix removal, and rookie Cor’Dale Flott will start in his place in the team’s Week 2 matchup against the Panthers on Sunday, per Dan Duggan of The Athletic (Twitter link). Flott, a third-round choice in the 2022 draft, played just two special teams snaps in New York’s opener last week, so this will represent an early test of the rookie’s mettle.

Flott lost this summer’s slot cornerback battle with third-year pro Darnay Holmes, and Big Blue deployed a starting CB trio of Robinson, Adoree’ Jackson, and Holmes in Week 1. It appears that Flott, a 6-1 defender who has a three-inch height advantage over Holmes, will operate opposite Jackson on the boundaries while Holmes will remain in the slot.

The Giants pulled off a surprising upset over the Titans last week, but as Nic Bodiford of Pro Football Focus (subscription required) observes, the club did surrender seven completions of 15 yards or more, the fifth-highest total in the league. The task will not get any easier this week, as Carolina features D.J. Moore and Robbie Anderson at the top of its WR depth chart. Panthers QB Baker Mayfield will likely attempt to attack Flott early and often with his speedy, talented wideouts.

Flott, an LSU product, has the speed and length to compete with players like Moore and Anderson, but he entered the league as something of a raw prospect who would need a little time to reach his ceiling. However, the Giants made James Bradberry a cap casualty this offseason, and the team is paper-thin at the CB position at the moment. Nick McCloud is dealing with a hamstring injury, leaving recent waiver claim Justin Layne and Fabian Moreau — who was promoted from the taxi squad yesterday — as the only healthy backups.

Despite their cornerback woes, the Giants are a slight favorite today as they seek to move to 2-0 for the first time since 2016.

NFC East Notes: Giants, Eagles, Lamb

The Giants‘ long-rumored James Bradberry separation leaves them thin at the cornerback position. Although Big Blue should not be ruled out of a veteran addition here, the team is turning to one of its holdovers to fill Bradberry’s spot. Aaron Robinson, a 2021 third-round pick, is the early favorite to start on the outside opposite Adoree’ Jackson, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY notes. A 2021 third-round pick out of Central Florida (by way of Alabama), Robinson played in just nine games last season and made two starts. Despite beginning the season on the PUP list due to an offseason core surgery, Robinson played 243 defensive snaps as a rookie. The Giants also have 2021 slot corner Darnay Holmes as a possible outside option in Don Martindale‘s defense, per Vacchiano, with third-round rookie Cor’Dale Flott competing with Holmes for the slot gig.

If the Giants are to pursue vets, many are available. Kevin King, Xavier Rhodes, Joe Haden and Trae Waynes remain free agents, as does ex-Martindale Ravens charge Jimmy Smith, though he has battled injuries and is going into what would be his age-34 season. Here is the latest from around the NFC East:

  • New York did make a replacement effort at tight end, after losing Evan Engram to Jacksonville. Ex-Texan Jordan Akins is a Giant, and Ricky Seals-Jones remains rostered. But fourth-round rookie Daniel Bellinger resides as a candidate to usurp both on the depth chart, Vacchiano adds. Bellinger, who played collegiately at Georgia, has taken first-team reps during OTAs. The 6-foot-6 pass catcher was a three-year Bulldogs contributor, though he only topped 350 receiving yards once (357 in 2021, a two-touchdown season).
  • Ex-Bellinger Bulldogs teammate Nakobe Dean entered the draft with more fanfare, though he nearly joined Bellinger as a Day 3 pick. The Eagles stopped the acclaimed linebacker’s freefall at No. 83 overall, doing so in part because they were high on his football IQ during the pre-draft process. In working at both the middle and weakside spots, Dean has a chance to carve out a significant role as a rookie, per NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Reuben Frank. This could mean Dean ascends to a three-down role as a rookie. The Eagles signed ex-Charger Kyzir White but nontendered 2021 regular Alex Singleton as an RFA. T.J. Edwards, however, has been a starter for the past two seasons. It will be interesting to see where Dean is once the Eagles convene for training camp.
  • Isaac Seumalo is involved in a rather high-stakes offseason. The injury-prone guard looms as a cut candidate, but he remains an option to be a Week 1 starter. This is by design, with Frank adding the veteran blocker will either be the Eagles’ right guard starter or be released. This appears a test to see if Seumalo (21 missed games since 2020) can still show the form that prompted the Eagles to give him a three-year, $17.6MM extension in 2019. Now that we are into June, a Seumalo release would create more than $5MM in cap space.
  • CeeDee Lamb has both bulked up and, strangely, grown a half-inch this offseason. The 23-year-old Cowboys wide receiver has gained 10 pounds and said he grew to 6-foot-2 1/2, Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News notes. With Jerry Jones calling Lamb a superior No. 1 option to the since-traded Amari Cooper, and Michael Gallup unlikely to be ready for Week 1, Lamb will have plenty on his shoulders to start the season.

NFL Draft Pick Signings: 5/19/22

Here are the latest mid- and late-round draft picks to sign their four-year rookie contracts:

Cincinnati Bengals

New York Giants

Tennessee Titans