New York Has Giant Possibilities This Off Season

Kyle McMorrowCorrespondent IFebruary 11, 2010

GLENDALE, AZ - NOVEMBER 01:  Defensive end Julius Peppers #90 of the Carolina Panthers warms up before the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the Universtity of Phoenix Stadium on November 1, 2009 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Finding a solution to a problem can be tricky if you don't plan ahead while considering the present.

With free agency and the draft quickly approaching, the New York Giants are in excellent position to make a huge splash this offseason if they play their cards right and move fast.

With constant reports of discontent leaking out of New York from the mouth of Osi Umenyiora, coupled with his recent threats of "quitting" the game altogether, the Giants may need to move the Pro-Bowl defensive end before things get any worse.

Out in Carolina, a similar story is developing.

Free agent defensive end Julius Peppers has also expressed a desire to move on from the team that propelled him to superstar status, so where does that leave the Giants in terms of possible scenarios?

New York could attempt to move Osi Umenyiora for a first-round draft choice, possibly one that could put them in position to nab defensive back Eric Berry, linebacker Rolando McClain, or defensive tackle Brian Price.

As in any deal, the Giants would need to make sure they have the talent to replace someone of Umenyiora's stature—enter Julius Peppers.

Peppers is 30, and an established veteran.

Last season he racked up 10.5 sacks and 42 tackles, while intercepting two passes and forcing five fumbles. His numbers may not have been the most electric, but his talent is far from deteriorated and he could easily return to his 2008 form when he recorded 14.5 sacks and 51 tackles. 

If the Giants could somehow find a suitor willing to give up a first-round draft choice for Umenyiora and possibly a late-round pick, while signing Peppers to an extensive deal, they could kill two birds with one stone by removing a problem and drafting for the future.

In addition to the possible explosion of talent they could add with two first-round draft choices, regardless of position, the Giants are also rumored to be in on free-agent middle-linebacker Karlos Dansby.

Last year Dansby expressed interest in playing in a big market like New York. Unfortunately for the Giants, Arizona franchised the Pro-Bowler last season before he could hit the market.

It is no secret current Giants linebacker Antonio Pierce has struggled the past few seasons in pass coverage and is now questionable after an injury sidelined him last season.

In addition to his troubles, Pierce has yet to get a contract extension or verbal commitment from the Giants organization and is entering his final year on his contract.

There is no question the No. 1 priority this off season for the Giants is defense. Whether it be defensive backs, linebackers, or lineman, every position could use some upgrades or replacements, and if the Giants could shore up a few free agents while bolstering their draft stock, they could become a dominant team this season, and many more to come.