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New York Giants Sign Center J.D. Walton

March 12th, 2014 at 5:05 PM
By Dan Benton

The New York Giants have signed former Denver Broncos center J.D. Walton, reports the Denver Post.

Jeffrey Beall / Foter / CC BY-SA

Walton, originally a third-round pick of the Broncos in the 2010 NFL Draft, was a two-year starter out of the gate for Denver. He started all 32 games from 2010-2011 (36 consecutive in all), including a stint as Tim Tebow's center, but suffered a serious ankle dislocation/break in 2012 and has not played since.

The Broncos ultimately waived Walton in December of 2013, where he was promptly claimed by the Washington Redskins, but ended up back on the free agent marking once the new league year got underway this past Tuesday at 4:00 PM EST.

At nearly 6'3'' and 300+ lbs., Walton has good size and a big build, although he tends to be shorter (wither short arms) than most prefer in their offensive line. Entering the NFL from Baylor, he also wasn't considered a pull center or someone fit for scheme that uses its center on the move, but that improved quite a bit in Denver.

Ultimately, this is a low-cost, low-risk, potentially high-reward signing for General Manager Jerry Reese and the New York Giants. If Walton is healthy and can return to his old form, he's still plenty young (26) and has a very solid upside. At worst, the Giants have competition at center.


Tags: Denver, Denver Broncos, Football, J.D. Walton, Jerry Reese, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Tim Tebow, Washington, Washington Redskins

36 Responses to “New York Giants Sign Center J.D. Walton”

  1.  JimStoll says:

    another injury reclamation project
    injured so badly he hasn’t played in almost 2 years
    take heart – he may fail his physical

    •  Begiant says:

      He is only 26 and started 32 games for the Broncos. I wouldn’t mind him competing with Boothe.

    •  G-MenFan says:

      He’s cheap, he’s good if healthy, and he could be another Seubert as easily as he could bust. Good signing. If he makes it he makes it.

  2.  TroyThorne says:

    Just because a guy gets signed doesn’t mean he got even a decent amount of money nor does it guarantee any sort of playing time. I’m sure Walton got very little money and is coming in to compete for a roster spot in training camp i.e. Peyton Hillis (who I found out today has only 100k guaranteed).

    •  JimStoll says:

      agree, especially since he apparently can’t even walk
      but hey: we look at everything!!

  3.  William says:

    Repost for Jim Stoll:
    Your always on the Eli overpaid attack, please tell me how you would handle the franchise QB. A number of points going in, by not extending him they are making it far less costly (nearly painless cap wise) to eventually dump him when the time comes.
    In the mean time do you demand a pay -cut? If he says no are you just going to cut him??? That leaves you with no QB and a huge cap hit???
    Really, and please don’t go with he got to much in his contract. this is the penalty for winning not one but two Super Bowls and coming thru in the clutch in the biggest game and the playoffs…. see Joe Flacco. He got the market price for what he got done. Lets see how the Hawks n 49ers do when they sign their QB for the market value.


    •  Eric S says:

      Stoll hates the Giants. They stink, every move they make stinks. Eli stinks. Reese stinks. Coughlin is the worst coach ever. The owners don’t care to win. That pretty much sums up the gist of every Stoll post. It’s his shtick.

      Look I get the root of his point in that we should’ve gotten more playoff appearances given the talent we’ve had over the years, thus giving us a shot at a real dynasty. But he likes to take it to the absurd.

      •  William says:

        Look I agree with both of you that the lack of playoff appearances is awful and inexcusable.I even am down with saying a lot of those struggles in the regular season falls on TC and his dogmatic approach to coaching. I will also take a shot at JR for not evolving with the NFL and the passing game, he needed to protect his QB with a talented line but chose the bargain method learned from Ernie A.
        However the Eli makes too much money really I don’t get and he’s not alone. Yes, I agree that Eli has woefully underperformed the last 2 years but (1) not all his fault, see KG and a terrible line and lost an elite receiver in Nicks. (2) the nature of the beast for what a 2 time Super Bowl QB winner gets in pay….talk about complaining about success.
        My point is I’m glad we are not extending him and making the cap issues longer, He’s not that grossly overpaid in comparison to other big time QB’s. At least now if we have to go full blown rebuild we are not eating those wasted cap dollars.

  4.  fanfor55years says:

    This guy was fabulous at Baylor. I think he was considered the favorite to win that trophy for the best collegiate lineman (I don’t remember the name of the award) but somehow came in second after which there was some controversy over whether the best man won. He was mobile, and a great protector of his quarterback.

    I don’t know about how the reconstruction of his ankle went, but if he can play he’s the real deal. I rarely notice centers in college ball, but I sure noticed him. He was terrific and could do everything. If he’s healthy he is a FAR better center than any we’ve had in many years.

    •  fanfor55years says:

      And if we got him on the prove-it deal we presumably did, this could be a huge coup for both Reese and our scouting group and medical team.

    •  William says:

      Is he the starter or depth? As depth a fine pick-up; as the starter how is he different than Baas from an injury stand point.

      •  fanfor55years says:

        Health is the big IF. Obviously, if he isn’t healthy then he isn’t going to even make it through camp. But if by some chance the doctors put him back together and his ankle will hold up and is close to fully functional, people will be surprised at what a good signing this will have been. I have NO idea how he was in Denver, but he was a very, very good college player (far better than was Baas at Michigan).

  5.  BBWC says:

    2014 Scout Dot com NFL Free Agent Tracker has J.D. Walton ranked 12th amongst the centers available, he’s ranked one spot BELOW, none other than, Jim Cordle who’s ranked 11th…..OMG!!!! send him back! seriously though, I hope that was because he was injured.

    •  jfunk says:

      It’s obviously because he was injured. Jim Cordle would not have started his first 32 games in the league.

      This guy was a good player that had his ankle mangled. If his ankle is healed, he could be good (although it’s no guarantee…he still hasn’t played in 2 years).

      I don’t care about taking a flyer on him, but it won’t do anything to make me feel better about our Center position until I see him play well in a pre-season game.

      IMO, this doesn’t change our current needs at all, he’s just another depth competitor with upside.

    •  nick86 says:

      OMFG I almost died from laughter when I read BBWCs post. Ranked below CORDLE!!! haha

  6.  ERICHONIUS says:

    Maybe this means we use a draft pick on a center to groom? or maybe we are afraid we will be priced out on the other centers?

  7.  Krow says:

    Low risk … high potential reward. He’s like a UDFA.

  8.  jerseyrich says:

    We can still sign a real center, although I doubt we will now.

    •  Begiant says:

      I hope we at least resign Boothe. We need a good competition. Maybe a draft pick as well. We can get a good center in the third or fourth round.

      •  jerseyrich says:

        We can….I was hoping wed snag a known commodity and not waste a pick on a center…but it is what it is. There is definitely another center getting signed or picked no matter what. Maybe this kid could play guard too and the Giants are just looking to start cutting some dead wood like brewer, herman, and possibly mosley.

  9.  Nosh.0 says:

    I’m pretty sure Center is still at the top of our shopping list. Until saints guy, packers guy, and Mack are signed I wouldn’t rule out any of those 3.

    Anyone know how much cap we have left at this point?

  10.  bluetick says:

    Thanks for the rant Eric S. A Stoll post reminds me of one of Neil Young’s prefaces to a song. “Here’s something guaranteed to bring you right down”.

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