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4 needs New York Giants must address next

New York Giants general manager Joe Schoen accomplished two of his biggest tasks this offseason when he worked a multi-year deal with Daniel Jones, and gave Saquon Barkley the franchise tag.

With New York’s two best offensive weapons back for the upcoming season, there’s reason to be optimistic that the team can improve on their 9-7-1 record.

But there’s still a ton of work the 43-year-old general manager must do before April’s draft. With teams being able to negotiate with players beginning on Monday before the start of free agency on Wednesday, here’s a look at what’s next on Schoen’s to-do list.

Related: 4 logical New York Giants receiver targets in free agency and draft following Daniel Jones extension

Upgrade the wide receiver position

NFL: New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles
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The lack of an explosive playmaker at the receiver position was the biggest detriment to the team last season. With the Giants expected to have around $18 million in cap space, you can rest assured that acquiring a free-agent receiver is a top priority.

Many feel that New York will have a reunion with Odell Beckham Jr., as the two sides met late last season but were unable to come to terms on a deal. OBJ had a workout on Friday where Giants receiver coach Mike Groh was in attendance. Don’t be surprised if Beckham decides to rejoin the franchise that drafted him early on in free agency.

But if a reunion does not occur, look for Schoen to target others such as Mecole Hardman, Jakobi Meyers, or Mack Hollins. Each of which could add inject more speed into the lineup.

Related: Ranking the 12 best landing spots for Odell Beckham Jr. after his private workout

Work out a deal with Julian Love

NFL: Washington Commanders at New York Giants
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After Jones and Barkley, Love was the most notable free agent on the team. Love led the team in tackles last season with 124 and had two interceptions. Not only can he play multiple positions in the secondary, but he’s also a valuable special teams player.

His work ethic, while being willing to do whatever the team needs, is one of the reasons he’s one of the most respected players in the locker room and why he was named one of the team captains.

Love will turn 25 next week, and there are reports that the team is already negotiating a multi-year deal that will keep the versatile defensive back with Big Blue for years to come.

Related: Top NFL free agents of 2023: Rankings the best players available from 1-400

Improve the interior offensive line

NFL: New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles
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At times the offensive line last season showed signs of improvement, and other times they struggled mightily with the exception of left tackle Andrew Thomas. The offensive line still remains a concern, especially with guard Jon Feliciano and Nick Gates being free agents.

So it’s imperative that Schoen addresses the interior offensive line in free agency. One way they can accomplish this is by signing guard Isaac Seumalo, who spent his first seven seasons in the league with the Philadelphia Eagles. Bringing back the 29-year-old guard doesn’t seem to be a top priority to the Eagles, so he’ll be available to bolster New York’s offensive line.

He can play either guard position, and according to Pro Football Focus, he only had six penalties last season and allowed just one sack. This would not be a flashy signing, but it would be an affordable addition in a position of need.

Related: 4 predictions for the New York Giants this offseason

Work on an extension for Dexter Lawrence

NFL: NFC Wild Card Round-New York Giants at Minnesota Vikings
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One of the first decisions Schoen made when he became general manager was to give Dexter Lawrence his fifth-year option that would keep him with Big Blue through the 2023 season. Lawrence showed last season that he’s one of the best defensive linemen in the league as he set career highs in tackles with 68 and in sacks with seven and a half. As a result, the 342-pound defensive lineman was voted to his first Pro Bowl.

Now although it’s a guarantee that he’ll be on the team for the upcoming season, as a general manager, you also have to think three moves ahead, and it would be ideal to work out a deal now as opposed to next year when Lawrence will be a free agent.

Coming to terms with Lawrence will not only keep him as part of the team’s core for years to come, but it will also allow Schoen flexibility to maneuver the cap hit that will make it easier to re-sign Andrew Thomas when he’s up for a contract extension. Fortunately, this appears to be in the works as both sides want Lawrence in a Giants uniform for many years to come.

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