The first week of free agency brought a flurry of moves and plenty of surprises. One of the biggest came at the end, as former Lions’ receiver Kenny Golladay agreed to a four-year, $72 million deal with the New York Giants. The receiver lands a new, long-term deal and the Giants gain the elite receiver weapon they’ve been missing since Odell Beckham, Jr., was traded to the Cleveland Browns.
Golladay played four years with the Lions, catching 183 passes for 3,068 yards and 21 TDs. His 2020 was slowed by injuries, as he appeared in just 20 passes for 338 yards and two TDs in five games. But in 2018 and 2019, he went over 1,000 yards. In 2019, he caught 65 passes for 1,190 yards and 11 TDs. That was good enough to be WR9 on the season. That’s the kind of weapon the Giants are looking for in 2021.
The Giants’ passing game, particularly Daniel Jones, can use the boost. As a team, the Giants threw for just 3,336 yards and 12 TDs in 2020. Jones, in his second year, 2,943 yards, 11 TDs and 10 INTs in 14 starts. The Giants’ top receiver was Sterling Shepherd, who caught 66 passes for 656 and three TDs, while Darius Slayton caught 50 for 751 yards and three TDs.
Golladay is a big upgrade, joining Shepherd, Slayton and tight ends Evan Engram and newly signed Kyle Rudolph. The Giants also figure to get a healthy Saquon Barkley back, giving the team and offensive coordinator Jason Garrett plenty of weapons to compete in the NFC East. But much of the team’s production will depend on Jones, who threw for 3,027 yards and 24 TDs in 12 starts as a rookie.
For now, I have Golladay as a high-end WR2. Jones moves to a mid-range QB2. The question is the split and targets for Slayton and Shepherd. Slayton still seems the better option, which I have as a WR4 for the time being.
DJax signs with the Rams
The Los Angeles Rams, who traded for Matthew Stafford earlier this off-season, added a new weapon in the passing game, agreeing to terms with DeSean Jackson on a one-year contract. Jackson, a speedster, had a rough 2019 and 2020 with the Philadelphia Eagles. In two seasons, he appeared in just eight games, catching 23 passes for 395 yards and three TDs. When healthy, Jackson can be a downfield weapon.
In 2016 with Washington, he caught 56 passes for 1,005 yards. In 2017 and 2018 with Tampa Bay, Jackson caught 91 passes for 1,442 yards. In Los Angeles, he joins a receiving group led by Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp, providing depth and explosiveness with second-year receiver Van Jefferson. Jackson remains a great option in Best Ball formats while being too unreliable to bank on as a starter in traditional or dynasty formats.
Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.