NFL

Giants sign safety Bobby McCain to be Julian Love’s replacement

Members of the current Giants front office know all about Bobby McCain, and Tuesday they made the versatile defensive back the newest addition to their defense.

McCain, 29, signed a one-year, veteran salary benefits contract, and he could end up being the replacement for Julian Love, a starting safety in 2022 who went to the Seahawks for a better deal than the Giants offered.

McCain spent the past two seasons with the Commanders, starting 32 games. Playing against the Giants in 2021, he intercepted Jake Fromm twice in the season finale, returning one of the turnovers for his first career touchdown.

In 2020, McCain started 16 games for the Dolphins. He was a fifth-round draft pick out of Memphis by the Dolphins in 2015, when current Giants general manager Joe Schoen was Miami’s director of player personnel.

The Dolphins’ general manager at the time was Dennis Hickey, who is now the Giants’ assistant director of player personnel.

So, the Giants’ brain trust can fully endorse McCain and believe him to be an excellent leader.

Giants
Bobby McCain, who played for the Commanders last season, signed with the Giants. Getty Images

The plan is for McCain to compete for a starting job. He can play deep safety or line up as a nickelback, and the coaching staff will explore ways to get him on the field at both spots. In 121 NFL games (87 starts), he has 11 interceptions.

McCain has also been extremely reliable and available, playing in at least 16 games in six of his eight NFL seasons.

He played 93 percent of the snaps on defense for the Commanders the past two seasons.

McCain is the first defensive back signed by the Giants during this year’s free agency. He likely will not be the last, as adding to the depth at cornerback was a priority.

Giants
Bobby McCain tackles the Giants Matt Breida during a December game. AP

When Love signed with the Seahawks, finding more depth, and a possible starter, at safety became another need.

Love in 2022 became a full-time starter for the first time, and he was on the field 95 percent of the time (more often than any other defensive player), for 1,006 snaps.

The Giants made him a contract offer during the bye week and kept the offer on the table following the season, but Love, one of the most engaging players on the team, went to Seattle on a two-year deal worth $12 million.

The Giants have Jason Pinnock and Dane Belton as returning safeties. McCain is now squarely in the mix.