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Giants Now (3/23): What happened in free agency (so far) & who's still available?

MARCH-23

The new league year is here.

So far, the Giants have agreed to terms with the following free agents according to media reports. The agreements are contingent on the players passing physicals, which will take place on a date yet to be determined.

Who's still available from NFL.com's top 101 free agents?

Below is a look at the top 101 free agents, according to NFL.com, and whether they have signed new contracts or remain on the market.

NFL.com ranks the top 101 players in the 2020 free agency cycle.

Giants will not exercise S Antoine Bethea's contract option

The Giants informed safety Antoine Bethea they will not exercise his contract option for the 2020 season.

Bethea, 35, joined the Giants for his 14th NFL season as a free agent on March 15, 2019. He started all 16 games last season and led the Giants with 110 tackles (81 solo), the 11th time in his career he exceeded 100 tackles. He also had one interception, six passes defensed and two fumbles recoveries.

Bethea played in his 200th career game and made his 191st start against Arizona on Oct. 20, the team he played for in 2017-18. He was the 36th player in NFL history whose primary position was defensive back to play 200 or more games.

2020 NFL Draft to proceed; public events canceled

In consideration of current information related to COVID-19 and guidance from medical experts such as the CDC, and in coordination with public authorities in Nevada and the City of Las Vegas, the NFL will modify its plans for the 2020 NFL Draft, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced.

The clubs' selection of players will proceed as scheduled April 23-25. The NFL is exploring innovative options for how the process will be conducted and will provide that information as it becomes available. The selection process will be televised.

Public NFL Draft events in Las Vegas next month will not take place.

"This decision reflects our foremost priority – the health and safety of all fans and citizens," said Commissioner Goodell. "While this outcome is disappointing both to the NFL and to the Las Vegas community, we look forward to partnering with the Raiders, the City of Las Vegas and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority for a future NFL Draft as well as evaluating opportunities for other major NFL events in Las Vegas in the future, including the Super Bowl."

NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah ranks the top 50 prospects in the 2020 NFL Draft.

NFL delays offseason programs indefinitely

NFL clubs will delay indefinitely the start of their offseason programs, commissioner Roger Goodell announced last Monday.

The decision followed discussions with NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith and consultations between the medical teams for the NFL and NFLPA, and based on coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance from public health officials. In addition, special procedures will be in place for the start of the new League Year until further notice.

Below are the latest guidelines:

Off-Season Programs

The parties will continue to follow the guidance of medical and public health professionals, including their respective medical advisors. As a result, Off-Season Team Activities will not commence on April 6 for teams with new head coaches and April 20 for all other clubs. The parties will periodically meet and reassess the public health situation to determine an appropriate start date for any offseason team activities and other related considerations as this situation develops.

Over the course of the next several weeks, NFLPA Medical Director Dr. Thom Mayer and NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills—in consultation with the Duke Infection Control Outreach Network (DICON), and other league and NFLPA advisors on infectious disease control—will develop a standard set of protocols for clubs to implement regarding facility cleaning and maintenance, equipment preparation, steps to identify player and staff who may be at elevated risk, and other preventive measures.

Free Agent Travel and Medical Procedures

During the upcoming free agency period, which begins on the afternoon of Wednesday, March 18, NFL clubs may not bring any free agent player to a club facility or other location to meet with club personnel. Further, club personnel, including members of the club medical staff, may not travel to any location to meet with or conduct a medical examination of a free agent player.​

The NFL and NFLPA are developing protocols that will provide clubs with opportunities to review a free agent player's medical records from his prior club(s) and to arrange for a free agent player to have a medical exam in the player's home city or at another nearby location. These steps are consistent with those announced last Friday for club contact with draft-eligible college players.

Access to Club Facilities

As a further step to address issues relating to coronavirus (COVID-19), NFL clubs will close their facilities to players, other than those undergoing medically-supervised rehabilitation and treatment, for the next two weeks.

NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith said: "It is our responsibility to work together and protect the health, safety and well being of everyone in our business. Nonetheless, public safety is paramount during this national emergency and we will continue to work with the NFL, medical experts and seek guidance from federal agencies to adjust our business practices accordingly."

Commissioner Goodell said: "Based on the most recent guidance provided by leading health officials, and in consultation with the NFLPA and both our and the union's medical advisors, we believe this is the appropriate way to protect the health of our players, staff, and our communities. We will continue to make decisions based on the best advice from medical and public health experts and will be prepared to make further modifications as needed."

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