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Dave Gettleman, John Mara say Giants need playmakers on offense

Giants owner John Mara wears a face mask

Giants owner John Mara wears a face mask to protect against COVID-19 prior to an NFL game against the Ravens on Dec. 27, 2020, in Baltimore. Credit: AP/Gail Burton

The coming Giants offseason can be boiled down to one word: playmakers.

After the team finished next to last in both yards (299.6 per game) and points scored (17.5), and in a season in which the NFL set league-wide records for each no less, co-owner John Mara and general manager Dave Gettleman agreed that the priority heading into 2021 is acquiring players who can improve on that lackluster performance.

"There’s no question that we need to help our offense going forward and add some more pieces," Mara said. "That will be a priority for us."

Gettleman said in terms of his roster-building philosophy, there are three stages to success and the Giants have accomplished two of them. The first is having a quarterback, which he and the organization believe they have in Daniel Jones. The second is improving the offensive and defensive lines – "it’s the big men who allow you to compete," Gettleman said – and that, too, seems to be in place.

"Then, it’s offensive playmakers, and let’s go," Gettleman said. "We’re very conscious of it and we’re going to find the right guys to help Daniel and get us over that hump."

One of them, running back Saquon Barkley, should be back from a season-ending torn ACL to help in 2021. For the others the Giants will need to rely on the draft (they have the 11th overall pick) and a free agency market that is expected to be flooded with talented wide receivers.

"This is a goal of ours for the offseason," Gettleman said. "We need to find playmakers. That’s all there is to it."

Notes and quotes: Gettleman dispelled any thoughts about imminent retirement despite turning 70 next month. "I feel fine, I feel good, I’m excited, I just want to keep going," he said. "I’m ready to rock." He added that he recently had his 24-month checkup after overcoming lymphoma when doctors told him he is "healthy as a horse" … While there were no specific answers regarding a potential contract extension for Barkley this offseason, Mara said he expects the running back to "be a Giant for a very long time" … Gettleman said many upcoming roster decisions will depend on what the 2021 salary cap winds up being. Because of financial losses from the pandemic, the cap is expected to be significantly lower than it was in 2020. "We’ll plan as best we can," he said. "That piece is going to be interesting to work with and work through" … Gettleman said even though it raised his price tag as a pending free agent, he was happy to see DE Leonard Williams have a breakout season with 11.5 sacks and two NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors (including for Sunday’s three-sack game against the Cowboys). "Leonard did a great job working his fanny off," he said. "He thrived in our atmosphere. It’s like I tell players all the time, ‘I want you to be successful and I want you to make me cry when it comes to negotiations.’ "

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