EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — After days of hard-fought, down-to-the wire negotiating the New York Giants reached a new four-year contract with quarterback Daniel Jones on Tuesday and put a franchise tag on running back Saquon Barkley.
A person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press the Giants and agents for Jones reached the new deal with the franchise tag deadline minutes away. The person spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity because the team hadn’t yet made the deal public.
With Jones under contract, the Giants used their franchise tag on running back Saquon Barkley, the team announced.
Barkley’s tag is nonexclusive, which means he’s able to negotiate a contract with other teams in addition to the Giants. New York would have the right to match any team’s offer and also would receive two first-round draft picks if they decided not to match.
The deals came after Jones delivered a career season in leading the team back to the playoffs for the first time since 2016.
Jones and his new agents had meetings with Giants general manager Joe Schoen at the NFL combine last week and continued to work over the past week to get the new contract in place.
The Giants had refused to pick up the fifth-year option on Jones’ rookie contract before the start of the 2022 season. He was set to become an unrestricted free agent on March 15.
The No. 6 pick overall in the 2019 draft, Jones had his breakout season in leading New York to a 9-7-1 record. Working with new head coach Brian Daboll’s offense, Jones responded by throwing for 3,205 yards, 15 touchdowns and five interceptions. He also added another dimension to the offense by running for a quarterback franchise record 708 yards and seven touchdown.
The Giants’ had their first winning season since ’16 — and added a playoff win over Minnesota in the wild-card round. The Philadelphia Eagles thrashed them in the NFC semifinal.
Signing Jones allowed the Giants to tag Barkley, who also was an unrestricted free agent. Barkley had his best and healthiest season since 2018, rushing for 1,312 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also caught 57 passes for 338 yards.
The Giants had started the offseason with roughly $46 million in cap space. Safety and leading tackler Julian Love, offensive linemen Jon Feliciano and Nick Gates, receivers Darius Slayton and Richie James and long snapper Casey Kreiter are also set to become unrestricted free agents.