Landon Collins is joining one of the Giants’ NFC East rivals.
The three-time Pro Bowl safety agreed to a deal with the Washington Redskins for six years, $84 million with $45 million guaranteed, SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano confirmed on Monday.
The $45 million guaranteed all comes within the first three years of the deal.
The Giants let Collins enter free agency after they declined to franchise tag him last week and never had serious conversations with him about a long-term contract, according to Vacchiano.
The franchise tag would have guaranteed Collins, 25, $11.15 million for the 2019 season but his new deal with the Redskins gives him a $14.1 million annual average salary.
While some are speculating the Giants could receive a third-round comp pick by letting Collins go, there is no guarantee that would happen. Comp picks are based on a formula that includes everything from money to performance to free agents signs and lost.
Collins expressed that he wanted to sign a long-term deal with the Giants but would be unhappy if they used the franchise tag on him.
A “frustrated” Collins reportedly cleaned out his locker in February expecting not to return to the team.
GM Dave Gettleman indicated at the NFL combine that the team had salary cap restraints and he did not want any “distractions” in the locker room, but was not talking about Collins specifically.
Collins was a second-round draft pick by then-GM Jerry Reese in 2014 but had a breakout season in 2015, being named First Team All-Pro and selected to his first Pro Bowl. He led the team with 125 tackles, had four sacks and five interceptions that season.
He continued to be a force on defense, selected as the Giants’ lone Pro Bowler in 2017 and receiving the honor again in 2018 despite missing the last four games of the season with shoulder surgery.