Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie has a very interesting history. A 2008 1st round pick, DRC made the Pro-Bowl in 2009 and looked on his way towards cementing his place as one of the league’s best cornerbacks, grading out as Pro Football Focus’ 4th ranked cornerback that year. However, 2010 was the exact opposite for him, as he graded out as Pro Football Focus’ dead last ranked cornerback, which turned him into a throw-in to Philadelphia in the Kevin Kolb trade.
His tenure in Philadelphia wasn’t good, as he graded out as Pro Football Focus’ 86th ranked cornerback out of 109 eligible in 2011 and 98th ranked cornerback out of 113 eligible in 2012 as part of a massively disappointing Philadelphia secondary. That earned him a one-year prove it deal in Denver, worth about 4 million dollars, but he did prove it, grading out 5th among cornerbacks. However, he made some questionable comments before the Super Bowl about potentially retiring which, combined with his history of inconsistency and lethargy, raised some eyebrows.
The Broncos offered him a 6-year, 54 million dollar deal, which he turned down. That ended up not being wise as the Broncos gave similar money to Aqib Talib, while DRC was left as the odd man out on a dried up buyer’s market at cornerback. He was left “settling” for a 5-year, 35 million dollar deal with the Giants, with about 14 million guaranteed. He could still coast now that he’s gotten paid, but it’s a lot less money than he could have gotten with the Broncos, so it’s not nearly as bad of a deal as it could have been.
Credit the Giants for once again letting the off-season come to them and getting DRC at a “discounted” rate. Jerry Reese does this kind of thing almost every off-season and he’s been one of the most successful GMs in the NFL in his tenure. They had a need for a shutdown shadow cornerback and DRC could very well become that if he continues playing well. This deal could still backfire, but it could have been a much worse deal if they had signed him to it earlier in the off-season and it’s hardly the worst deal given to a cornerback this off-season. Sam Shields (4 years, 39 million), Vontae Davis (4 years, 39 million), and Aqib Talib (6 years, 57 million) were overpaid by much greater sums.