Thursday, March 13, 2014
Giants round out LB corps with McClain
By Dan Graziano ESPN.com
Another day, another linebacker. The New York Giants' steady, uninspiring first week of free agency continued Thursday when they agreed to terms with linebacker Jameel McClain on a contract he's expected to sign Friday.
McClain is 28 and went to Syracuse, so he's right in the Giants' wheelhouse. The former Baltimore Raven, who returned to the field in 2013 after a scary spinal cord injury knocked him out in December of 2012, seems a likely candidate to start at the strongside linebacker spot with Jon Beason in the middle and either Spencer Paysinger or Jacquian Williams on the weak side. McClain played inside linebacker in Baltimore's 3-4 front.
McClain joined the Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2008 and was one of their starting linebackers from 2010 until the injury knocked him out of Baltimore's run to the Super Bowl XLVII title. He returned to start 10 games in 2013, but the Ravens cut him a couple of weeks ago for cap reasons. His best statistical season was 2011, when he had 84 tackles, a sack, two fumble recoveries, an interception and four pass breakups. Solid veteran who can start or rotate around situationally should someone like Williams or Paysinger show more next year than they have in years past.
The Giants are still looking for a cornerback, a wide receiver, a kick returner, a center, a tight end and probably a couple of reinforcements on the defensive line. But they appear to be all set at linebacker, for a change.