The New York Giants have had an active offseason, they retained both Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley, and they added dynamic tight end Darren Waller. However, there is one under-the-radar signing that the Giants made in NFL Free Agency.
There were many smaller Giants free agent signings, mainly at wide receiver, and that is the position we will focus on for this. It was well-documented that the Giants had a weak wide receiver room in the 2023 season. Picking up Isaiah Hodgins was very helpful, and New York did re-sign him in 2023 NFL Free Agency, but just bringing him back was not going to be enough.
The Giants retained Sterling Shepard, but he is coming off of a torn ACL, and has been injury-prone for years. They also re-signed Darius Slayton, who is a receiver who brings some speed and has chemistry with Daniel Jones.
Let’s get to the Giants free agent signings. New York signed Jamison Crowder, Jeff Smith, and Harris Campbell. Crowder could be of use in the slot in Brian Daboll’s offense. However, Parris Campbell is the sneakiest signing for the Giants in NFL Free Agency.
Parris Campbell was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft out of the Ohio State football program. He has showed promise throughout his NFL career, but he has struggled with injuries nearly every season of his career.
In 2019, Campbell played seven games, and put up 127 yards and one touchdown in those games. It got worse in 2020, when he only played two games and put up 71 yards with no touchdowns. In 2021, Campbell played seven games, recorded 162 receiving yards and one touchdown.
Campbell finally put together a healthy season in 2022, when he played all 17 games, and put up 623 receiving yards with three receiving touchdowns. Those are not flashy numbers, but for being on a team that struggled so much on offense, it is not bad at all. Do not forget, the Colts started out with Matt Ryan at quarterback, went to Sam Ehlinger, then went to Nick Foles. That was all while head coach Frank Reich was fired, and the team brought in Jeff Saturday as interim head coach.
Praising this signing is not to say that Campbell will come in and become the number one receiver for the Giants. However, with how weak the wide receiver room was last season, the Giants do not need that from Campbell, nor are they paying him to be a number one guy. His contract with the Giants is one year for $4.7 million, with some incentives that can make him a bit more.
At the start of the 2022 season, the Giants starting receivers included Kenny Golladay, Sterling Shepard and Richie James. The failure that was the Kenny Golladay contract is well-documented. Shepard went down at the end of a week three game against the Dallas Cowboys. Richie James was a decent target for Daniel Jones, but he was in and out of the receiver rotation throughout the season.
Now, the Giants have a lot of low-commitment deals for receivers who can be serviceable, even if they are not standouts. That is what the Giants have gone for in their free agency approach. If it does not work out in 2023, they are not heavily-committed to these player financially. They can still target a wide receiver in the draft if they really like one. However, of the offseason signings, Parris Campbell brings some potential for great value.