In this series of pieces, Pro Football Focus is hammering into the value of players. To us it’s a “Janke Value Model” number, telling you what players were worth (by our grading) in 2013. You can read about the work we’ve done to create it HERE, but in short:
• It’s solely about what a player did on the field in 2013
• Players are grouped by positions so their play essentially earns them a portion of the positional salary pool
• It’s all about cap hits (these values are approximate)
Here are 2013′s most undervalued and overvalued New York Giants:
(* Denotes player missed significant portion of time through injury)
1. Will Hill, Safety
While many Giants fans are attributing New York’s defensive turnaround to Jon Beason’s arrival, the bigger boost came from Hill’s return from suspension around the same time. Devin McCourty was the only NFL safety to earn a higher grade from us this season. The second-year safety was the rare talent who played downhill against the run yet didn’t get beaten over the top against the pass. He only missed four tackles all season, giving him one of the highest Tackling Efficiency rates of any safety. He didn’t earn a pass defensed in coverage, but was incredibly good at limiting receivers to short gains; quarterbacks averaged just 9.8 yards per completion with a 62.0 passer rating when they targeted his coverage. Add it all up, and Hill was worth twenty times what the Giants paid for him.
2013 Cap Hit: $400k
2013 Jahnke Value Model: $8.0m
Value Differential: +$7.6m
2. Trumaine McBride, Cornerback
The Giants certainly didn’t plan to give a seventh-year journeyman a starting role, but McBride was forced to step in when injuries sidelined Corey Webster and Jayron Hosley early in the season. His +6.6 coverage grade was inflated by an epic Week 17 performance against the Redskins, where he picked up two interceptions and four passes defensed. Nevertheless, he was still solid all season long for New York, allowing just two touchdowns while limiting quarterbacks to a 57.4 passer rating when they targeted him. That’s great value for a player who was little more than added depth before the season.
2013 Cap Hit: $600k
2013 Jahnke Value Model: $3.6m
Value Differential: +$2.9m
3. John Conner, Fullback
Another injury replacement, Conner didn’t even join the Giants until after former Secret Superstar Henry Hynoski was placed on injured reserve in Week 4. His impact was felt immediately, as New York rushed for 123 yards against the Bears in his first start. A team that averaged just 56.8 rushing yards per game in their first five games finished with 95.3 per game in their last 11, in no small part due to Conner’s contributions. His +8.7 blocking grade was the third-highest for a fullback last season, and made you wonder what he was doing on the waiver wire.
2013 Cap Hit: $500k
2013 Jahnke Value Model: $2.6m
Value Differential: +$2.1m
4. Jerrel Jernigan, WR – Cap: $700k, JVM: $2.8m, Value Differential: +$2.1m
5. Stephen Goodin, LT – Cap: $200k, JVM: $1.9m, Value Differential: +$1.7m
6. Linval Joseph, DT – Cap: $1.0m, JVM: $2.6m, Value Differential: +$1.6m
7. Justin Pugh, RT – Cap: $1.5m, JVM: $3.1m, Value Differential: +$1.6m
8. Jacquian Williams, LB – Cap: $600k, JVM: $2.1m, Value Differential: +$1.5m
9. Victor Cruz, WR – Cap: $2.5m, JVM: $3.7m, Value Differential: +$1.2m
10. Johnathan Hankins, DT – Cap: $700k, JVM: $1.8m, Value Differential: +$1.1m
1. Eli Manning, Quarterback
Manning’s season may not have been quite as bad as his interception total indicated, but it certainly wasn’t good. His 67.2% Accuracy Percentage was dead-last among quarterbacks with 250 attempts, and his deep ball, once his greatest weapon, often betrayed him. His offensive line issues were nothing new, but he wasn’t able to overcome them like he has in the past. Throw in his enormous cap number, and he finished as the most overvalued player in the entire league.
2013 Cap Hit: $20.8m
2013 Jahnke Value Model: $5.4m
Value Differential: -$15.4m
2. Chris Snee, Right Guard*
There was a time when Snee was the best right guard in the NFL, but those days are gone. An injury ended his season after three games, but he was a shell of himself even before then. He allowed three sacks in that period after surrendering just two in the entire 2012 season, and his run blocking also fell off from his previous level. His trip to injured reserve guaranteed that he was the most overvalued guard of the 2013 season, but it’s hard to imagine him matching his high salary even if he’d stayed healthy.
2013 Cap Hit: $8.5m
2013 Jahnke Value Model: $200k
Value Differential: -$8.3m
3. Corey Webster, Cornerback*
Much like Snee, Webster once led his position’s grades but is now in steep decline. And also like Snee, we can’t blame Webster’s awful 2013 season on just his injury. When he did manage to get on the field, he looked a lot like the player who earned our third-worst cornerback coverage grade in 2012. He didn’t give up a ton of yards, but he still surrendered his share of first downs and had some missed tackles and poor run defense near the line of scrimmage. Even after taking a pay cut in the prior offseason, he still wasn’t worth nearly what the Giants paid him.
2013 Cap Hit: $5.3m
2013 Jahnke Value Model: $700k
Value Differential: -$4.6m
4. David Baas, C* – Cap: $4.7m, JVM: $400k, Value Differential: -$4.4m
5. Antrel Rolle, S – Cap: $9.3m, JVM: $5.6m, Value Differential: -$3.6m
6. Mathias Kiwanuka, DE – Cap: $4.1m, JVM: $800k, Value Differential: -$3.3m
7. William Beatty, LT – Cap: $3.6m, JVM: $700k, Value Differential: -$2.9m
8. Hakeem Nicks, WR – Cap: $3.7m, JVM: $1.4m, Value Differential: -$2.4m
9. David Diehl, RG* – Cap: $3.1m, JVM: $900k, Value Differential: -$2.2m
10. Andre Brown, HB* – Cap: $2.0m, JVM: $300k, Value Differential: -$1.7m
Summary – Team Value Differential: -$24.6m
The Giants are a notoriously loyal organization, sometimes to a fault. Even looking past Manning, New York’s Overvalued list reads like a who’s-who of holdovers from their Super Bowl teams who no longer are living up to their production. As effective as Conner was, it’s never a promising sign when your third best value comes from a fullback. The good news is that a lot of these damaging contracts will come of the Giants’ books this offseason, and it seems like General Manager Jerry Reese is ready for some new blood on the roster.
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