New York Giants cut running back Rashad Jennings

Nov 14, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings (23) runs with the ball during the second half at MetLife Stadium. The Giants defeated the Bengals 21-20.  Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

As part of a little veteran house cleaning on Monday, the New York Giants have cut running back Rashad Jennings.

On Monday, as they presumably start to shape an offseason plan, the New York Giants cut wide receiver Victor Cruz. A downturn in production, due in part to a significant knee injury a couple years ago, made a $9.4 million cap number untenable for the Giants.

The Giants finished 2016 with the NFL’s 29th-ranked rush offense (88.3 yards per game), while ranking 30th in yards per carry (3.5) with a league-low six rushing touchdowns. A changing of the guard to 2016 fifth-round pick Paul Perkins may be coming to spark some improvement on the ground next season, and the Giants have now taken a big step in that direction.

Rashad Jennings led the Giants in rushing last season, with 593 yards (on 181 carries) and three touchdowns over 13 games, and he also added 35 catches for 201 yards and another touchdown. As ESPN’s Jordan Raanan reported, the Giants will save $2.5 million in salary cap space by cutting Jennings. While that obviously isn’t a ton of added cap room, Jennings will also turn 32 in March and his level of production in 2016 probably represents his upside going forward.

Jennings should easily land somewhere as a strict backup, or as part of backfield committee in a best-case scenario. But the more interesting development is on the Giants side of things, as Adrian Peterson listed them among three teams he’d like to play for during an ESPN appearance last month. That interest could be mutual, under the assumption the Minnesota Vikings do the expected and cut Peterson at the start of the new league year.

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