After word emerged that Giants quarterback Daniel Jones had switched representation from CAA to Athletes First, we noted that Jones wants “as much as $45 million per year, or more.”
Reportedly, it’s more.
Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News reports that Jones’s agents are asking for more than $45 million per year on a long-term deal.
This makes it even more likely that the Giants will apply the non-exclusive franchise tag at some point before Tuesday’s deadline. That would give the Giants the ability to keep Jones at a one-year offer of $32.416 million — far short of his reported goal.
If that happens, Jones would have options. He could, for example, stay away from the offseason workouts, training camp, and the preseason, showing up just before the start of the regular season and getting the full $32.416 million. But he’d risk not being prepared to have the kind of season that would make him an attractive option in 2024.
Come 2024, the Giants could tag him again, at a 20-percent raise over his 2023 pay. That’s $38.89 million, for a two-year take of $71.31 million.
Jones may not like it, but that’s how the Collective Bargaining Agreement works. Regardless of what Jones would get on the open market, he can’t get there until 2025, at the earliest.
And who knows? Maybe the Giants would tag him a third time, despite the 44-percent increase over $38.89 million in 2024. If he plays great for the next two years, and if the salary cap and the market keep going up and up (and up), $56 million won’t be a ridiculous amount to pay — especially since it would push Jones to a three-year haul of $127.3 million, an average of $42.4 million per year.
Even then, it’s less over three years than what Jones wants now. So why wouldn’t the Giants just tag him?
They undoubtedly will, barring a short-term deal or some other win-win that gives him what he’d make under the tag (and maybe a little more) but nothing close to $45 million or more annually.