LaCosse missed all of this past season with a knee injury, but the Giants placed him on injured reserve with the intention of having him return for 2017. He rehabbed at the team facility and new coach Ben McAdoo had him (and several others on injured reserve) attend meetings during the season.
The promising tight end had a strong spring and summer and was set to play a significant role prior to being slowed by the injury. With Larry Donnell set to hit the free-agent market, LaCosse has a chance to play a significant role this season if he comes back strong.
LaCosse was splitting first-team reps with Donnell and Will Tye throughout the summer.
Tye is also an exclusive rights free agent. He is also expected to return, along with last year’s seventh-round pick Jerell Adams.
ERFAs are NFL veterans (traditionally undrafted players) with fewer than three accrued seasons. Teams can place an ERFA tender on eligible players, who then can not sign an offer sheet with other teams. They receive a contract consisting of the minimum salary for a player with their experience.
LaCosse, 24, has flashed ability to block and catch passes. Remaining healthy is the key. He missed the early parts of 2015 with a hamstring problem and all of last season because of the knee.
The Illinois product had three catches for 22 yards during the 2015 season.
"He brings a knowledge of the position, No. 1, and he's a big target," Giants tight ends coach Kevin M. Gilbride said last season. "I would say overall, as far as him going into his second season, he does everything pretty well."
The Giants are also expected to add a tight end through free agency or the draft. The position produced just three touchdowns this past season and struggled badly with its blocking.