It's the worst time of the NFL calendar year, the day in which over 1,100 hard-working young athletes around the NFL will be asked to turn in their playbooks.
That's right; it's time for NFL teams must trim from 90 to 53 by 4 p.m. ET Saturday, August 31. And it's not going to be an easy process for head coach Pat Shurmur.
Be sure to bookmark and refresh this page throughout the day as we'll post the roster transactions reported.
A couple of quick notes.
First, just because a player is reported as cut/waived doesn't mean he won't resurface on the Giants' practice squad if he clears waivers.
Second, often there are trades in the work that go right down to the wire. That's why it's best to wait for the official announcement from the team regarding how each player transaction was handled.
Terms you need to know
The following are some of the terms that you'll see as they relate to the roster moves and what they mean.
Contract Terminated: Players with at least four years of NFL experience are not subject to waivers. If they are not in the team's plans, they can hit unrestricted free agency instantly rather than having to wait 24 hours.
Waived: A player with less than four years of experience not in a team's plans must go through a cycle in which the other 31 NFL teams have an opportunity to claim his contract.
If the player is awarded to another team off waivers, they assume the player's previous contract. If that player goes unclaimed via waivers, then he becomes an unrestricted free agent.
The waiver claiming order is the same as the NFL draft order from the spring, meaning the Giants would be sixth in terms of priority.
The claiming order resets after the third weekend of the regular season (September 24) to reflect the inverse order of the standing of clubs int he current season's games.
Suspended: Players who are suspended do not count against the 53-man roster. The rights to that player's services are still held by the club if so desired, but the player does not receive his base pay while suspended, nor can the player be on the team's property or in communication with the club.
Further, the team will receive a cap credit reflecting the number of the suspended player's earnings; for example, the Giants will be credited four weeks on receiver Golden Tate's base salary.
Waived/Injured: A player who is waived/injured must pass through waivers as previously explained. However, if he clears waivers, he reverts to the team's injured reserve list, where he will remain either for the duration of the season or until such time when an injury settlement is reached.
Salary Cap Notation: Although there are some intriguing veterans available following their release from other teams, remember that if a team signed a vested veteran before Week 1, his 2019 salary becomes fully guaranteed.
So unless that player is in the team's full-year plans and is NOT a short-term fix, it's best to wait until Week 2 to attempt to sign the player.
Once the roster transactions become official, we'll have additional analysis on the decisions. (Scroll down the page for the newest transactions and analysis.)
WR Golden Tate (suspended, 4 games)
Tate's 4-game league-imposed suspension for a PED violation earlier this year was upheld despite his appeal. Here's what the Giants stand to lose while Tate is serving his suspension, which begins at 4 p.m. ET August 31.
WR T.J. Jones (contract terminated)
T.J. Jones, who finished as the Giants' leading receiver in receptions (12) and yards (146) this summer, catching 12 balls for 146 yards, and two touchdowns, has been let go.
Jones' fate was likely tied into his special teams performance, where he competed with Brittan Golden for the punt return duties.
Jones' final punt return statistics were 9 returns, 3 fair catches, 56 yards (6.2 yards/return), no touchdowns. (Golden averaged 21.6 yards/return on 5 returns with 1 touchdown.)
Jones also suffered an ankle injury in the preseason finale but it was not thought to be serious. He is not eligible for waivers, as he is a fifth-year veteran. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan; confirmed by a source.]
OL Paul Adams (waived)
Adams, 6-6, 315 pounds, saw his snaps increase over the summer at offensive tackle.
He allowed three pressures in Thursday night's preseason finale while playing left tackle.
He has intriguing size but if he should land on the practice squad, he'll probably want to improve his feet, which were sluggish throughout and his hand punch. [Transaction first reported by R. Dunleavey.]
LS Taybor Pepper (waived)
Pepper got some extended work this preseason thanks to two games in which incumbent Zak DeOssie didn't suit up. His long snapping, with the exception of one in the Patriots game, was spot on in terms of accuracy and speed.
He was also usually one of if not the first men down the field on punt coverage. If Pepper doesn't catch on elsewhere, perhaps a return engagement with the Giants is in his future.
OL James O'Hagan (waived)
The Giants are knee-deep at the center position assuming they keep Evan Brown in addition to starter Jon Halapio and backup Spencer Pulley.
As for O'Hagan, there was no question that he knows how to play the position, but needs some additional bulk to better withstand playing against bigger opponents.
A practice squad candidate, O'Hagan would also likely benefit if he can learn how to play guard.
G/C Evan Brown (waived)
The Giants kept Brown, who was a surprise roster addition last year, on the 53-man roster but didn't give him much of an opportunity to step in and play even as injuries began to decimate the unit.
Brown, who this summer worked at both guard spots and at center, seemed to be more of a natural at the latter position, where he often benefits from double-team blocks that helped mask his lack of ideal size for the position.
With the Giants needing some extra spots at other positions, Brown is likely headed to the practice squad if he clears waivers.
OLB Avery Moss (waived)
Moss, a fifth-round pick in 2017, spent all of last season othe practice squad after showing himself to not be a fit int he new defensive system.
Unfortunately, it looks as though he's still not a fit. He managed just one pressure and three tackles this summer, which isn't good enough for a team that needs to find a more consistent pass rush this year. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan.]
OLB Jake Carlock (waived)
Carlock grabbed the imagination of his Giants teammates, coaches and fans with his spectacular pass breakup, interception and return for a touchdown against the Jets, but for as spectacular as that play was, even Carlock wasn't completely happy with it.
With that said, Carlock should get some practice squad consideration as he's shown himself to have a nose for the ball and that he has good awareness for what's going on.
We didn't see Carlock long snap this summer, but that's yet another thing he can bring to the table down the line. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan.]
Edge Terence Fede (contract terminated)
Fede, a 5-year NFL veteran, was added after the start of training camp when the Giants lost Alex Jenkins.
Fede likely sealed his fate with the Giants Thursday night when he struggled with his contain against the run and was unable to generate any semblance of pressure on the pass rush.
OLB Joey Alfieri (waived)
At the time of his signing, Alfieri looked like an intriguing addition to the roster.
Unfortunately, Alfieri's production didn't show up in the stat department as he managed just one pressure in four games and 2 tackles.
Alfieri struggled with showing awareness on contain and was at fault for allowing a quarterback scramble up the gut on a third-and-long conversion by the Patriots.
Alfieri also hesitated later on int he game when he had a chance to make a statement hit while his pass rush attempts were stymied.
Alfieri has some tools but he needs to improve his strength and his awareness. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan.]
ILB Josiah Tauaefa (waived)
Tauaefa was a premium undrafted free agent signing, and it wasn't hard to see why.
The off-ball linebacker, named as one of Pro Football Focus' Top 25 Rookies after three weeks of the preseason, took sharp angles to the ball and his instincts were better than expected.
What he lacked in speed, he made up for in smarts. He finished second among the team's off-ball linebackers with 9 tackles (behind Jonathan Anderson, who had 12).
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Tauefa's failure to make the roster is likely more of a result of the numbers game than his performance.
If the Giants can add him to the practice squad--a big if given his showing this summer--don't be surprised if he's one of the first guys called up if there's a need at that position. [Transaction first reported by R. Dunleavy.]
WR Reggie White Jr. (waived)
The Giants receiver picture gained a little bit more clarity as they trimmed Reggie White Jr from the roster.
White, out of Monmouth University, had a solid summer, caught eight out of 15 pass targets for 115 yards, with 1 drop.
White likely sealed his fate with his preseason finale showing in which he couldn't reel in an easy touchdown pass midway through the third quarter, a ball that nearly was intercepted.
White also was unable to come up with an acrobatic catch early in the fourth quarter of that game and committed a mental error regulting in a penalty when he went out of bounds in the end zone and re-entered the field of play on the failed 2-point conversion.
With all that said, White showed enough intrigue as a willing blocker and got better with his route running as the summer went on to where a spot on the practice squad likely awaits him if he clears waivers. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan.]
DE Jake Ceresna (waived)
Ceresna, formerly of the CFL, is another player who likely got swept up in the numbers game.
All preseason, he's put his speed to good use in being a disruptive force when given a chance.
Against the Patriots, he recorded a sack on a play in which he was left unblocked, a quarterback hit that led to an interception and some solid tackling.
Ceresna finished his preseason with seven total pressures, 4 tackles (2 solo) and three tackles for a loss.
Again, the numbers didn't favor him, but if he clears waivers, it would be an upset if he's not on the practice squad. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan.]
OL Malcolm Bunche (waived)
The second time wasn't a charm for Bunche, who was in camp with the Giants last year.
This year, he was added to the 90-man roster when injuries at offensive tackle struck rookie George Asafo-Adjei (concussion), Chad Wheeler (back) and Brian Mihalik (burner).
Bunche saw most of his late-preseason snaps at guard. He allowed just two pressures his late-game snaps inside at guard where his feet were a bit sluggish. [Transaction first reported by R. Dunleavey.]
RB Jonathan Hilliman (waived)
Hilliman ran well this summer, racking up 80 yards on 25 carries with two rushing touchdowns. He also caught six of seven pass targets for 36 yards.
Hilliman showed he had some nice vision and decision-making with the ball and is intriguing as a potential power rusher, but needs an additional experience which he should get if he makes it to the practice squad. [Transaction first reported by R. Dunleavey.]
DB Henre' Tolliver (waived)
The former AFL defensive back finished his preseason with 13 tackles and has allowed 13 of 18 passes targets to be completed for 163 yards and 1 touchdown. But what probably did Tolliver in was his lack of pass breakups and interceptions. [Transaction first reported by M. Lombardo.]
DL Freedom Akinmoladun (waived)
In 77 snaps, Akinmoladun recorded just two pressures and three tackles, with two tackles for loss. His biggest struggles came against double-team blocks, which too easily swallowed him up. [Transaction first reported by R. Dunleavey.]
QB Kyle Lauletta (waived)
After recording an impressive 22 of 40 for 247 yards and 2 touchdowns against the Patriots, Kyle Laueletta will reportedly hit the waiver wire.
Lauletta, who was drafted by Dave Gettleman in the fourth round last year, finished this preseason 37 of 62 (59.7%) for 453 yards with 4 TDs and 0 INTs.
Laueltta's arm-strength continued to come into question, despite his strong preseason showing.
The Giants, who could very well be looking at going into the regular season with just two quarterbacks, might be hoping to get Lauletta onto the practice squad, a risky move given how well the kid played. [Transaction first reported by Tom Pelissero, NFL Network.]
Note: We'll have some additional analysis on this roster move in a separate article after the cuts are finalized.
P Johnny Townsend (waived)
This comes as little surprise as Townsend, claimed off waivers from the Raiders, wasn't very consistent with his punting.
Still, the Giants had little to lose in bringing in competition for incumbent Riley Dixon, who was also inconsistent this summer.
DL Chris Slayton (waived)
Slayton, also a draft pick of the current regime, had an uphill battle for a roster spot given the play of veteran John Jenkins and Olsen Pierre.
Slayton's biggest struggles were in his game speed, where he seemed to be too slow to read and react to what was happening out there.
Perhaps a year on the practice squad might allow for him to get a better feel for the speed of the game, as he does have good size and tools with which to work.
WR Alex Wesley (waived/injured)
It's been a rough summer for receiver Alex Wesly, an undrafted rookie out of Northern Colorado. Wesley began training camp on the PUP list before finally passing his physical.
He flashed on occasion but unfortunately suffered an ankle sprain before the preseason finale. If he clears waivers, he will be added t the team's IR list but could be released with an injury settlement.
RB Rod Smith (Injured Reserve - Adductor)
This move comes as a surprise considering Smith's adductor injury suffered in the team's third preseason game was not believed to be serious enough to warrant shutting him down for the year.
Nonetheless, the Giants are moving on from Smith, whom they signed just before training camp.
Before his injury, Smith had rushed for a team-low (among the running backs) 62 yards on 21 carries with one touchdown, but only managed to break one tackle, the lowest of the running backs this summer.
As a receiver, Smith caught both of his pass targets for eight yards in total but picked up a team-low 5 yards-after-catch in what amounted to a very underwhelming summer showing.
Because he is being placed on injured reserve now, Smith, the former Cowboy, is ineligible for the "designated to Return" provision, which as explained above, is only available to players who are place don IR after the initial 53-man rosters are set. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan.]
ILB Jonathan Anderson (IR, Knee)
Anderson, who suffered a knee injury, finished as the team leader in tackles among the off-ball linebackers with 12, and appeared to be on his way toward slipping on the 53-man roster until his injury derailed him.
Anderson is entering his fourth NFL season, having spent his first three with the Bears and having a brief stint with the Cardinals last year. [Transaction first reported by R. Dunleavey.]
TE C.J. Conrad (waived)
After having a strong spring and early summer, tight end C.J. Conrad tailed off toward the end and just missed making the final cut.
In comparing Conrad to Garrett Dickerson, his primary competition for a roster spot, Conrad's inline blocking wasn't quite as stout as Dickerson's.
Conrad gave a good effort against defensive ends, but in the end, Dickerkerson, who missed last week's game with a quad injury, just might have done a little bit more to edge Conrad out of a roster spot.[Transaction first reported by R. Dunleavey.]
TE Scott Simonson (Injured Reserve)
This move doesn't come as a surprise given the high ankle sprain Simonson suffered Thursday night.
Even before then, Simonson wasn't a lock to make the roster. The Giants, you might remember, re-did his contract, turning it into a minimum salary benefit to reduce his cap hit if he should be cut.
While Simonson fought the good fight, his run-blocking lacked power.
LB Keion Adams (waived/injured)
This, unfortunately, was another no-brainer roster move, as Adams suffered a knee injury in the preseason finale against the Patriots. [Transaction first reported by D. Duggan.]
TE Jake Powell (waived)
Powell was added late in camp after the Giants placed Isaigh Seawright on injured reserve. Powell, who played his college ball at Monmouth, is a raw prospect who could benefit from a stint on the practice squad, though it's unclear if the Giants will have froom for them on theirs.
S Kenny Ladler (Waived/Injured)
Ladler has been dealing with a hamstring injury which put him behind on the depth chart. He will receive an injury settlement, per a source.
WR Brittan Golden (Injured Reserve)
Golden suffered a calf injury in Thursday's preseason finale and will be moved to injured reserve where he's expected to be released after reaching an injury settlement with the club. Golden had been competing for the punt returner job.
OT Chad Wheeler (Waived/Injured)
Wheeler, last year's starting right tackle after Ereck Flowers struggled and was benched, dealt with a back injury for most of the preseason.
Additional Moves (now official)
- DB Terrell Sinkfield, Jr. (waived)
- DT John Jenkins (waived)
- OT George Asafo-Adjei (Injured Reserve/Concussion)
- DB Tenny Adewusi (waived)
- OT Victor Salako (waived/injured - shoulder)
- S Kamrin Moore (waived off Commissioner's Exemption List)