The writing appears to be on the wall for James Bradberry and his NY Giants career. With the veteran cornerback not in attendance at Giants voluntary minicamp, and Joe Schoen confirming they had received calls regarding the player, it appears it’s now a matter of when (and for how much) not if Bradberry will be traded.
It is becoming increasingly likely the Giants will need to move on from Bradberry to simply afford their 2022 NFL Draft class. According to Over The Capthe Giants can save up to $12 million against the 2022 cap by trading Bradberry.
The salary cap can be a fiddly mechanism, but a team that trades for Bradberry would likely be looking at paying his $13.5 million salary in 2022. Teams do however have vast experience with restructurings and extensions to make contracts far more cap friendly. Dan Duggan of The Athletic reported at the NFL combine in March that a third-round pick was the consensus value for Bradberry in a trade.
The NY Giants could get more draft picks by trading James Bradberry
If there was a suitor out there who offered a third-round pick, Joe Schoen and the Giants likely would have accepted it by now. Lacking leverage, and running out of time if they are looking to gain 2022 draft capital, it is far more likely an acceptable trade value for Bradberry lands in the fourth-round range – potentially even lower.
On the assumption that a fourth-round pick is likely the best-case scenario, let’s take a look at three potential landing spots for Bradberry, and what the return would look like for the Giants using the Rich Hill trade value chart.
NY Giants Trade Package: Kansas City Chiefs
NYG 2022 fifth-round (147 overall)
2022 third-round (103 overall)
When it was first suggested James Bradberry was on the trade block, the Kansas City Chiefs emerged as the front runner. Whether or not the rumors circulating at the beginning of the year suggesting an agreement could be reached were true or not, we will likely never know.
There have since been conflicting reports around the interest from the Chiefs, and what the return would look like for New York. Kansas City has a pair of fourth-round picks but is likely reluctant to part ways with one of them AND take on the full Bradberry contract. For the right price, they could look to acquire the talented corner and extend him to spread out the cap hit.
For that reason Schoen has to sweeten the deal, eventually finding an agreement to move up over 40 spots from the fifth to the third round this year. More importantly, the Chiefs take on the full contract of Bradberry and the Giants can afford to sign their draft class. Picking at 103 overall, some prospects the Giants could be looking at are CB Zyon McCollum, TE Jelani Woods, and WR Romeo Doubs.
NY Giants Trade Package: Las Vegas Raiders
NYG 2022 fourth-round (112 overall)
LV 2022 Third-round (86 overall)
LV 2023 fifth-round
Former Giants defensive coordinator Patrick Graham left New York for Las Vegas in the offseason. Paired with the fact the Raiders desperately need help at the position, Bradberry being traded to the team appears a possibility.
The tough situation for the Giants and Schoen in this scenario is that the Raiders do not have much draft capital in 2022. They may be more reluctant to participate in a straight pick for Bradberry swap. They also currently don’t have sufficient cap space to take on the Bradberry contract, so they would need to restructure some deals to make room – something NFL teams have no issue doing when they have their hearts set on a player.
In this situation, the Giants move up 26 spots, again into the third round. They also receive a 2023 fifth-round pick. Similarily to the proposed trade with the Chiefs, Schoen and the Giants would have three picks in the 2022 third round. The current roster needs talent and so picking at all three spots is not out of the question. Some notable players who could be available for the Giants at pick 86 include WR Khalil Shakir, CB Marcus Jones, and C Dohnovan West.
If a prospect they like slips into the back end of round two, however, they would have enough capital to move up and take him. The versatility this additional third-round pick can provide will likely be appreciated by the Giants who need to fill holes on the roster, as well as add top-level talent.
NY Giants Trade Package: Cincinnati Bengals
CIN 2022 fourth-round (136 overall)
CIN 2023 sixth-round
The Bengals are clearly a team in win-now mode, being literally a drive away from winning the SuperBowl last season. In fact, with better cornerback play they likely would have, with former Giant Eli Apple giving up the game-winning touchdown late in the fourth quarter.
The point is that the Bengals could use reinforcements at the position. According to ‘over the cap‘ they currently have over $17m of cap space left in 2022, more than enough to take on the Bradberry contract.
With the Bengals in a situation to accept the full contract of Bradberry, the Giants accept the 2022 136th overall pick and a sixth-round pick in 2023 in return. If the Giants want to stick and pick at 136 overall, they would have a number of interesting options. They could see players such as WR Kevin Austin Jr., RB Brian Robinson Jr., and S Tyson Anderson available for the taking.
Again, it seems a small price to receive for a former pro-bowl cornerback. Unfortunately for the Giants, they are cap-strung by the situation left by Dave Gettleman. The fourth round still has the potential for a starting piece to be found, particularly with the current state of the Giants roster. In this scenario they would have double picks in both rounds 3 and 4 and could look to bundle and move up, should a prospect they fancy fall.
NY Giants Trade Package Summary
When you look at the potential trade packages the Giants could see for James Bradberry, it doesn’t look special. At one point considered one of the best corners in the league, he is clearly a talented player. With the cap situation in New York giving the Giants little-to-no leverage, the trade package they ultimately receive is going to seem light in comparison to a CB1 talent.