Apparently making arguably the greatest catch in Super Bowl history doesn’t carry as much weight as one would think.
David Tyree, a 28-year-old special teamer/receiver, made the miraculous leaping catch late in the fourth quarter with New England’s Rodney Harrison all over him, leading the Giants to that huge upset victory in Super Bowl XLII in February.
The problems for Tyree are twofold: 1) He is rehabbing an injured right knee; and 2) The Giants are overloaded at receiver, which could put Tyree’s roster spot in jeopardy if he suffers any setbacks from that injury.
Tyree would likely open as No. 6 on the depth chart, behind Plaxico Burress, Amani Toomer, Steve Smith, rookie Mario Manningham and 2006 second-round pick Sinorice Moss. The Giants also have rookie free agent in D.J. Hall and receiver/kick returner Domenik Hixon.
“You look at this game for what it is,” Tyree said. “They’re going to make decisions based on what they feel is best for the football team. Whether I’m on the roster, off the roster, the fifth receiver or the third receiver, they’re going to make decisions based on what’s best for the team. My job is to go out there and make the plays when I’m given the opportunity. When you look back at what I’ve done when given the opportunity, I’ve showed up. I can’t do any more than that.”
Tyree really hasn’t shown himself to be much of an NFL receiver, that catch notwithstanding (he also had a TD catch in the Super Bowl). He caught only four balls in the regular season last season and has 54 catches in five seasons. He is a good cover man on kicks, making the Pro Bowl in 2005, but Hixon can also do that – and cheaper.
One thing is for sure: Tyree will have to show his knee is healthy to keep a spot; he hasn’t been able to get on the field for the voluntary workouts.
“This is the first time in my career I’ve ever had any kind of injury, so I don’t know how to handle it,” Tyree said. “Making the catch was a great opportunity, but I can’t rest on it.”
Some reports have the Giants putting Tyree on the PUP list, keeping him out until Week 7 and saving them what would be a bad public relations move by cutting him. Plus, by then, the receiving corps undoubtedly would be thinned by injury.