Osi Umenyiora: 5 Reasons the "Trade Window" Should Be Sealed Forever
Although this doesn't mean the unhappy Giant will be in a Giants' uniform when the season begins, for the sake of Big Blue, I truly hope general manager Jerry Reese sticks to his word, and does not put Umenyiora back on the the trade market.
It's sad to say that if the window were to re-open, the Osi Era in New York would be over. So without further ado, here are five reasons why the Giants' front office should seal that window shut, and keep Umenyiora in New York for the 2011 season, and beyond.
Sit back, relax and enjoy.
Kickoff is around the corner.
Re-Sign Kevin Boss
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According to ESPN's John Clayton, the Seahawks could package TE John Carlson with a draft pick for Giants DE Osi Umenyiora.
Unless the Seattle Seahawks are willing to part with a first-round draft pick, which is unlikely, the Seahawks would be stealing Umenyiora away from the Giants. Although some of you might disagree, free agent tight end, Kevin Boss, is better than Carlson, and no draft pick would replace the talent and ability that Umenyiora provides for the Giants and their defense.
Despite Carlson's great sophomore season, catching seven touchdowns for 574 yards, the third-year tight end had a major drop-off in production in 2010, only finding the end zone three times. And while Boss didn't have the greatest 2011 season either, being underused in the offense, he shined when given the minimal opportunities to perform.
Needing a miracle for offensive coordinator Kevin Gillbride to involve Boss in the offense, Eli Manning would welcome him back, making it clear he wants Boss to return to the Giants.
Manning subtly added that the Giants should focus their efforts on Boss, when asked who'd he rather the Giants sign—Boss or Steve Smith.
Manning answered: "Obviously Kevin, there's a little bit more urgency to that one just because he can come back and start practicing right away".
If it means parting with Umenyiora, there's no need to acquire another tight end,.
It's clear Manning hopes his tight end returns to the team. Let's hope the front office does as well.
Never Enough Depth
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Justin Tuck and Jason Pierre Paul are just a few of the defensive ends of the New York Giants.
However, if one goes down, who will be there to replace him?
Will it be Adrian Tracy? A second year player out of William & Mary, whose never stepped foot onto a football field.
Will it be Ayanga Okpokowuruk, a rookie defensive end who probably won't even make the team?
Or what about MathiasKiwanuka, who will most likely be playing some defensive end, some defensive tackle, some linebacker. But who knows if he's even healthy?
Last season, the NFL players union said the number of injuries increased during the 2010 season.
Based on data from NFL Weeks 1 through 16 from Football Outsiders, which compiles information from the publicly available weekly injury reports, according to the NFLPA, injuries increased from 3.2 to 3.7 per week per team and the share of players injured increased to 63 percent compared to a 2002-09 average of 59 percent.
13 percent of all injuries required players to be placed on injured reserve this season, compared to an average of 10 percent for 2002-09. The analysis is The NFL also compiles such data. Its numbers also show more players on IR than in recent years: 464 for the entire season, up from 388 the previous year, 416 in 2008 and 413 in 2007
Injuries are happening more often, and it certainly wouldn't hurt if the Giants had the ability to replace one superstar defensive end with another.
Still a Difference Maker
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Tied for the team lead with 11 1/2 sacks, and leading the league with an NFL record of 10 forced fumbles last season, Osi Umenyiora proved he can still play at a Pro-Bowl level.
A two-time Pro Bowler, Umenyiora has proven that when healthy, he has the ability to be one of the top defensive ends in the NFL, and he deserves to be paid like one.
Except in 2008, when Umenyiora suffered cartilage damage in his left knee requiring season-ending surgery, Umenyiora has proven his ability to stay healthy starting 16 games in 2005, 2007 and 2010.
He had a great season last year, and there's no reason to think he won't repeat his performance in 2011.
His Teammates Want Him to Stay
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"I hope things work out. He's a terrific player and quite frankly we need that guy. He's a tremendous pass rusher, tremendous asset to our football team." - Chris Canty
"Umenyiora's stance is completely justifiable." - Zak DeOssie
"Somehow, I just feel as though Osi is going to be a Giant." - Justin Tuck
"Obviously we’d love to have him on the field.” - Mathias Kiwanuka
It's time General Manager Jerry Reese opens his eyes, and realizes the importance of Umenyiora to the Giants. If not, have him ask one of his teammates. I'm sure they'll be able to explain.
And even though Jason Pierre-Paul impressed in his rookie season, finishing third on the team last year with 4½ sacks, in a few years he might be ready to replace Umenyiora, but he's not there yet.
The Front Office Would Pay the Price
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...And so would the fans.
I expect the Giants to put the best team on the field, and without Osi Umenyiora, that is not possible.
I have no idea where the Umenyiora drama is heading, and I'm sure neither do you. We can only sit back, watch this unfold, and wonder where he'll begin the 2011 season.
I hope it's with the Giants, and I hope you do too.