The New York Giants interior offensive line is a shell of its former self, as it’s aging, injury-prone, and ineffective. That trifecta reared it’s ugly head last season, leading to copious pressure on overwhelmed star QB Eli Manning, as well as poor running lanes up front for the likes of Andre Brown and, prior to that, Brandon Jacobs. Upgrading the offensive line is the biggest need for the Giants this offseason, so drafting Michigan’s Taylor Lewan in the first round and kicking talented second-year Syracuse product Justin Pugh inside could do wonders. Adding an “X” receiver to replace Hakeem Nicks and another CB would also help this team out, but I think upgrading the offensive line is the best thing. I worry that the reputations of their veteran blockers have far exceeded their actual performance on the field, because Manning has honestly had to overcome poor interior pass pro over the past couple of seasons.
It’s not surprising at all to hear that the Giants have asked two of their veteran interior OLs to take paycuts, as a league source tells Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio that the Giants have approached both Chris Snee and David Baas about taking paycuts. Florio reports that while Snee, as expected, is willing to take less money to remain with the Giants, the team’s starting center is less willing to do that. Since Baas is expendable, there’s no sense in the Giants keeping him if he isn’t willing to take less.
Baas is 32 and set to make $4.75 million next season, so he’s a pretty obvious cut-and-upgrade in my book, and he only appeared in three games last season anyway.
As for Snee, his 2014 season is voidable, so the Giants don’t have to pay him the $11.75 million he’s owed, which is a ridiculous sum of money for a 32-year-old who also played in just three games last season and is declining. It’s not surprising to hear that Snee is interested in a paycut, because he would go the David Diehl route and retire if not retained (Jacobs did the same thing, too). But how big of a paycut is Snee willing to take? That’s a key question. At this point in time, I expect the Giants to keep Snee, cut Baas, and make an upgrade. While Snee is still a productive starter in this league, there’s just no need to keep Baas around.