Giants GM Jerry Reese Is Stuck in the Rough

Benjamin C. KleinCorrespondent IDecember 31, 2009

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - JUNE 10:  New York Giants Senior Vice President and General Manager Jerry Reese addresses the media at a press conference where Michael Strahan announced his retirement from the New York Giants on June 10, 2008 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Andy Marlin/Getty Images)
Andy Marlin/Getty Images

New York Football Giants General Manager Jerry Reese has hit the first rough patch of a career he started so famously in 2007. 

An off-season spending spree that produced Defensive Tackles Chris Canty and Rocky Bernard, Safety C.C. Brown, and Weak-side Linebacker Michael Boley has failed miserably. Either due to weak performance or injury, not a single addition has performed up to expectations. 

The signing of former Seattle Seahawk Rocky Bernard to a four year, $16 million contract was puzzling the moment the ink was dry on the contract. The length and amount of money far exceeded what Bernard merited, based on his play with the Seahawks the last two years.  

Perhaps the Giants were reading the scouting report of Bernard from when he was a free agent in 2005. That year he had 8.5 sacks for the Seahawks.

Chris Canty's signing was lauded at the time and rightly so. He may still justify his $42 million contract, so he deserves time to heal and get on the field before any lasting judgement is made. That being said though, a very durable player for the Cowboys has been falling apart at the seams for the Giants. 

Michael Boley's signing signing to a $25 million, five year deal was also puzzling. Boley was benched last year by a playoff bound Falcons team due to inability to play the run.

Add an imminent suspension due to an off-field incident and one would think the Giants could have gotten him cheaper. While Boley has shown some promise and made some big plays, he has been constantly injured and and when healthy no noticeable difference is seen in the final result.

Add the recent mistake of getting into a public war of words with Giants legend Harry Carson, and one would understand if Reese is beginning to feel some buyers remorse. 

Perhaps the most egregious signing by Reese was the player who received the least amount of money and years; C.C. Brown. Brown received a $1 million 1 year contract to be the Giants sole backup safety.

Brown showed some promise with the Texans but in reality only received so much playing due to a general lack of talent around him. As soon as Brown was given real playing time with the Giants due to Kenny Phillip's injury he displayed a constant inability to make a play on the ball while it was in the air while also consistently letting wide receivers to get behind him for big pass plays. He was, to general relief of Giant's fans everywhere, benched. 

Counting on Brown to be the sole backup ended being Reese's most costly off-season mistake in free agency, with the Bernard signing a close second. Neither should be with the team next season. Canty and Boley both deserve another full year before they can be labeled busts, but in all fairness no one can say they have gotten off to good starts. 

Jerry Reese has proven in a short amount of time to be a highly capable NFL general manager. A few bumps in the road are to be expected. If Reese however is to be considered a great general manager, it will be based upon in no small part how he fixes his own mistakes.