Updates from Monday, July 21
"I think Chris was everything you could ever hope for in a player: toughness, integrity, and a lot of pride," Giants president and chief executive officer John Mara said. "Winning mattered to him. I think he set a great example for all of the other players. He's somebody we're going to miss very much. He was one of the greatest offensive linemen in Giants history, and he'll be on that Ring of Honor someday."
"Chris is a pro's pro," general manager Jerry Reese said. "He played the game right. He was as tough and prideful as they come. We will miss him." ...
... "To me, he was the best guard in all of football," [head coach Tom] Coughlin said. "No doubt. No matter who you put him against, all of the great defensive tackles in the game, the 350 (pound) guys, the 340 guys, he blocked them. When he first came here, he was so, so committed and so driven to excel at the professional level as he had excelled at the collegiate level (at Boston College)."
Quarterback Eli Manning also commented on the loss of his teammate in the release:
I'm obviously disappointed just because we've had a long run together. We came in the same year, were roommates for home games and away games that first year. We've won a lot of games and been through a lot together and been great pals, so I told him I'd miss him. ... I think he made a decision kind of based on how he's feeling and also based on what's best for the Giants. He's a true team player and just didn't think he was going to be able to help and wanted to put us in a situation where we kind of knew that early on. We're going to definitely miss his leadership and his presence around the locker room, around the team, but we'll still be great friends.
Earlier, Fox Sports' Mike Garafolo highlighted a tweet sent out by Snee's agency, Eastern Athletics:
Chris Snee's agency--> RT @EASagency: Montrose to Boston College, the Giants for 11 seasons, 2 Super Bowl Championships, Pro-Bowler, All-Pro— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) July 21, 2014
Snee spoke to Josina Anderson of ESPN about why he decided to retire:
I felt worse by continuing to workout. I am nowhere near the level of strength that I usually have. That's been my game for 10 years, being one of the strongest players out there and using that to my advantage. If I don't have that, I wouldn't be able to do my job the way I expect, but also with what they expect of me. That's kind of what Jerry (Reese) and I agreed upon in March when we decided to try this thing and see if I can come back. I told him that he had my word, that I would be honest with him, and I was.
Prior to that, New York Giants defensive back Antrel Rolle took to Instragram to praise Snee for his time with the team:
This one hurts...... U always have guys that come to fight with you on the gridiron but very rarely do u find a guy who FIGHTS 100% of the time no matter how he feels. This guy gave the team his all. I begged him to come back and give me one more year. He tried but I guess it's time for him to leave the game. I can respect that. FIRST CLASS GUY ALL THE WAY AROUND. #offandonswitch #mybrother
Kevin Gilbride, Chris Snee's former offensive coordinator, spoke about his retirement with SiriusXM NFL:
New York Giants guard Chris Snee is reportedly planning to announce his retirement from the NFL on Monday after an accolade-filled, 10-year career, according to ESPN's Dan Graziano:
I am now being told that Giants G Chris Snee has indeed decided to retire and plans to announce it Monday.— Dan Graziano (@DanGrazianoESPN) July 21, 2014
Snee has started all 141 games in which he's played during a career that began in 2004, after the Giants selected him with the 34th overall pick in the second round. He played his entire career in his home state of New Jersey with the G-Men.
The Boston College product was a workhorse in terms of production, starting all but six games between his rookie season and 2012. He paved the way at right guard for Tiki Barber early on in his career, then helped anchor an offensive line that protected Eli Manning through two Super Bowls.
Pete Damilatis of Pro Football Focus detailed how well Snee played at the peak of his career:
Chris Snee's +129.6 @PFF grade from 2007-2012 was the 2nd-highest of any right guard in the NFL. Should get HOF consideration.— Pete Damilatis (@PFF_Pete) July 21, 2014
In 2013, injuries began to pile up for the then-31-year-old, and he was placed on injured reserve just three games into the season. He was an unknown heading into training camp, according to NJ.com's Jordan Raanan, having had two prior hip surgeries since the end of the 2012 season and a lingering elbow injury.
The guard's six-year, $42.5 million deal lasts through the 2014 season, and he's set to be a $6.6 million cap hit in the upcoming season if he were to play, according to Spotrac.
Snee won't retire without high honors. He was selected to four Pro Bowls, most recently in 2012, and made every All-Pro team from 2008 to 2010.
The timing of Snee's decision isn't ideal for the Giants, who now have to replace their right guard after finishing 29th in rushing last season. Offseason free-agent signing John Jerry, whom the Giants added in March after he spent four years with the Miami Dolphins, could wind up being Snee's successor.