Giants sign Markus Golden: Grade, reaction, analysis

New York Giants, NFL Free Agency

Hampered by injury the last two seasons, Markus Golden has signed with the New York Giants.

With their trade of Odell Beckham this week, the New York Giants seemed set to rebuild while still hanging on to Eli Manning. But after signing wide receiver Golden Tate earlier Thursday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network and Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News reported the Giants have agreed to terms with defensive end/outside linebacker Markus Golden.

Golden spent his first four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, with a breakout 12.5-sack season in 2016. A torn ACL in 2017 ended that season early, and in 11 games last season Golden had just 2.5 sacks.

Even after a couple down seasons, Golden was getting significant interest on the free agent market. Vic Tafur of The Athletic reported on Thursday that the Oakland Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs joined the Giants with interest, so it appears New York won something of a bidding war.

Contract Details

Rapoport and Leonard reported it’ll be a one-year deal for Golden with the Giants. Financial terms are not out yet.

National Reaction

Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal suggested the Raiders were simply outbid for Golden.

ESPN Giants reporter Jordan Raanan pointed to Golden’s tie to Giants defensive coordinator James Bettcher.

As did ESPN’s Josina Anderson.

USA TODAY’s Giants Wire offers five things to know about Golden.

FanSided’s Matt Verderame likes the move, while pointing to the Giants’ interest going back to the beginning of the week.

After trading Olivier Vernon to the Cleveland Browns, the Giants desperately needed to find some pass rush help. If he’s fully healthy, a little further removed from his ACL tear, Golden can provide a boost off the edge.

Next: Keep Track of Every NFL Free Agent Signing Here

On his end, Golden has taken a prove-it deal as he’ll work under his former defensive coordinator in Arizona. That’s a good situation to get his career on track, and have a big season with an eye on a nice multi-year deal next offseason.

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