Giants release Brandon Marshall after he reportedly agreed to take a pay cut

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We breakdown the release of Marshall and what it could mean for Dez Bryant

by Sean Wagner-McGough
3h ago • 2 min read

Another veteran receiver on the downslope of his career is looking for a new home. On Thursday, six days after the Cowboys released Dez Bryant, the Giants parted ways with Brandon Marshall after one wholly disappointing, injury-plagued season.
The Washington Post’s Kimberley A. Martin first reported the news, which was then confirmed by Giants general manager Dave Gettleman. Martin reported in her story that Marshall agreed to take a pay cut in March to remain with the team and as a result, thought he’d be on the team’s roster for the upcoming season. But Gettleman said that Marshall was cut with a failed physical designation. The team will save $5.1 million with his release.
Marshall signed a two-year deal with the Giants last offseason after the Jets cut him during their roster purge. While Marshall dreamed of winning a Super Bowl with the Giants before calling it a career at the end of his contract, the Giants imagined he’d serve as the perfect compliment to Odell Beckham Jr. Neither of those two things came close to happening.
Marshall suffered ankle issues that limited him to five games. When he was able to play, he wasn’t effective, catching 18 of 33 targets for 154 yards and zero touchdowns in an anemic Giants offense that completely imploded over the course of the season.
Now, Marshall is entering free agency in mid-April, at the age of 34, and after consecutive lackluster seasons. Like Bryant, he might not find that his market is as active as he would have hoped. There’s no doubt that Marshall features an incredible career resume with 959 catches, 12,215 yards, and 82 touchdowns even though he’s spent most of his career catching passes from very mediocre quarterbacks. But recent success has eluded him. He’s failed to hit the 1,000-yard mark in three of his past four seasons. It’s worth noting that Marshall’s next team will be the sixth team of his career, which began in 2006.

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In December, Marshall said that before he retires, he wants to make his resume Hall of Fame worthy. So, it doesn’t seem like he’ll retire just yet.
“I’m all-in on football. I’ve rebuilt my body. I think I’m two great years away from — and I’ll say it, I want to be a Hall of Famer, and I think I got two great years to go to be mentioned with some of the greats,” Marshall said, per ESPN. “I’m not just playing this game just to be a guy; I want to be remembered for the product that I put out on the field.
“So these last few years have been tough, last year with the Jets, this year with the Giants. But I’m hopeful that the next couple years for me will be some amazing years and some of my best work.”
Considering Marshall’s never made it to the playoffs, he might prioritize playing for a contender at this stage of his career, but there’s no guarantee a contender will be interested in him. Like Bryant, Marshall likely can’t be picky if he wants to continue his career.

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Speaking of Bryant, he indicated that he would love to play for the Giants, but at the time, the Giants reportedly weren’t interested in him. With only Odell Beckham and Sterling Shepard now locked in as starters, the Giants do suddenly have a hole to fill at receiver. But that doesn’t mean Gettlemen will be keen to replace one aging veteran with a slightly younger aging veteran.

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