July 25, 2023   4 MIN READ

Giant Nothing

NFL Roundup: Saquon Ends Drama With Short-Term Deal; Cowboys Lock Up Top CB; Shocking Reunion


In the end, Saquon Barkley’s contract dispute resulted in the Giants running back potentially making about $1 million more.

The two-time Pro Bowler, who never signed his franchise tag worth about $10 million, agreed Tuesday to a one-year deal worth $10.1 million with incentives that can earn Barkley $1 million more, per ESPN.

Saquon Barkley

New York Giants RB Saquon Barkley returns to the team on a one-year deal after threatening to sit out camp under the franchise tag

Barkley can reportedly reach those incentives if he totals 1,300 rushing yards, 11 touchdowns and 65 receptions.

The new deal also reportedly came with $2 million up front in the form of a signing bonus but doesn’t preclude the team from using the franchise tag again in 2024.

Last year, the former Penn State star totaled 1,312 rushing yards, 10 touchdowns and 57 receptions as the Giants finished 9-7-1 to make the postseason.

They beat the Vikings in the first round before getting drilled by the Eagles in the NFC Divisional round, 38-7.

Per NorthJersey.com, the Giants must also reach the postseason this year for Barkley to hit his incentives:

The agreement represents a major turn of events for Barkley, who had never signed the tag and recently participated in a Zoom call with other disgruntled running backs to discuss the sparse market for their position and ideas on how to rectify the issue.
If Barkley doesn’t reach the incentives this year, he’ll make just about $100,000 more than the tag value.

Diggs Day

Another Birds’ division rival agreed to a contract with a franchise player, this one being a much more lucrative extension. 

The 24-year-old CB was scheduled to enter unrestricted free agency in 2024, but Dallas was determined not to let one of the league’s top playmakers in the secondary test the open market.

Diggs’ annual value on his new contract would tie for fifth among all NFL cornerbacks, per Overthecap.

While it seems like a no-brainer to bring back a player who had 11 interceptions in his second season, the most by any cornerback since 1981, there is more that meets the eye than just turnover numbers. Greg Cosell has described Diggs as someone who can get beat on occasion due to his aggressive style of jumping routes, but is still overall a quality player. 

Diggs and recently-acquired Stephon Gilmore on the outside, with Jourdan Lewis in the slot, make for a formidable group that could challenge the Eagles’ CB room of Darius Slay, James Bradberry, and Avonte Maddox as one of the best in the league.

More From McBride

Second-year Cardinals tight end Trey McBride could be poised for a much larger role in 2023 under the team’s new regime.

ITB’s Adam Caplan, in an NFL Notebook for Pro Football Network, wrote that Cardinals offensive coordinator Drew Petzing – a branch from the Kevin Stefanski tree – is expected to incorporate more 12 personnel (two tight end formations) into Arizona’s offense.

That should lead to more playing time for McBride, the Colorado State product and highest-drafted tight end from the 2022 class.

McBride caught 29 passes for 265 yards and a touchdown last year after being selected 55th overall. He played 53 percent of offensive snaps.

The Cardinals are also leaning on former Eagles tight end Zach Ertz, who turns 33 in November. Ertz caught 47 balls in 10 games last year for the Cards to finish with 406 yards and four touchdowns.

Graham Backer

NFL veterans reuniting with a team they once were stars for is nothing new, but the New Orleans Saints’ latest move is among the most shocking.

The now 36-year-old Graham returns to the team where he emerged as one of the best pass-catching tight ends in the game, with two All-Pro selections and multiple seasons with over 1,000 yards and double digit touchdowns.

After being traded to the Seattle Seahawks, Graham remained a solid player, but production began to decrease as age increased.

Graham was last seen in the NFL in an almost non-existent role with the Chicago Bears, with just 14 catches for 167 yards in 2021.

New Orleans seems to be willing to try anything after boasting one of the weaker tight end rooms in the league over the past decade.

Though surely they cannot be expecting much, at the very least they have a vet presence familiar with Pete Carmichael’s offense, the longest tenured OC in the league entering his 15th year with the title.

– Benjamin Paul and Geoff Mosher contributed to this report for InsideTheBirds.com

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