Leon Hall, CB, NY Giants
2016 Statistics (455 snaps): 31 tackles, 2.0 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 1 INT, 2 pass defensed
PFF Rankings: 75.9 (overall); 75.7 (coverage), 56.8 (run defense), 60.0 (pass rush)
Aiming for Hall follows the same brand of thinking as going for Newman would, though with some notable differences.
Hall is much younger (32 until December, versus 39 at season’s start for Newman), and has never produced a season with worse than a 75.9 (on a 0-100 scale) per Pro Football Focus’ grading metrics. Unfortunately, he’s also been much less healthy than Newman; after starting every game in his first four years, he’s failed to be active at least once every year since 2010.
The health issues can muddle things, but on a short deal he can still be a supremely good value for a team in dire need of cornerback help. Somehow the Giants got him for a meager deal which paid him under $1 million in 2016; while that number could/should rise, it shouldn’t jump to a crazy level. He may not be able to reach his former heights (by PFF metrics, he was above-average-to-elite from 2009-2013; since then, he’s only been average as a whole), but just getting middling production from him would be a massive improvement upon what we saw from Green Bay’s current CB crop (outside of Hyde’s late-season renaissance, but again, he may not end up back).
Having someone like Hall takes pressure off the group of struggling second-year players trying to handle that corner spot, if necessary letting them compete for the second-string and lower spot as they improve their games — something they missed out on in 2016 with Shields going down before Week 1 was even over. Letting them act in the 2nd/3rd/4th corner roles could really help them all, and would have the bonus of not forcing them to rush back from and play through potential injuries (something which ended up further damaging the already-rough seasons of both Randall and Rollins).
As long as there’s no ill will left from Hall breaking Jordy Nelson’s ribs in the playoffs, bringing him in on a short deal makes a ton of sense for Green Bay.