Osi Umenyiora Returns to the Practice Field for New York Giants

Erick Fernandez@erickgfonsportsCorrespondent IIAugust 14, 2011

HOUSTON - OCTOBER 10:  Osi Umenyiora #72 of the New York Giants in action during the game against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

The Associated Press (h/t ESPN) reported that Osi Umenyiora will practice for the first time in this abbreviated offseason on Monday, August 15 under the same contract.

This is extremely important for the Giants, who have had a rocky past couple of weeks. 

Despite being heavily scrutinized by media and fans for their handling of the contract negotiations with Umenyiora, the Giants will have their leading pass rusher back with the team.

Although the Giants offered performance-based incentives, Umenyiora rejected them. It is evident that he is still extremely dissatisfied with the status of his current contract and the way the front office is treating him. Regardless of Umenyiora's ongoing problems with Jerry Reese and Co., he said in an email to the AP, "I will play under my current deal because I love and respect my coaches, my teammates, the fans and myself. Not for those incentives."  

The return of Umenyiora should bolster up the starting D-line that played pretty well in their preseason opener against the Carolina Panthers. Jason Pierre-Paul had a really impressive game, recording two sacks against former Pro Bowl tackle Jordan Gross.

If Pierre-Paul had continued to perform like that during the rest of preseason, he would have offered some leverage against Umenyiora and his contract extension.  

In spite of this, I think many of the coaching staff and fans will be glad to see Umenyiora back at work tomorrow. Seeing Umenyiora on the practice field this Monday will ease the mind of some troubled G-Men aficionados—well, for the time being. 

With their starting defensive end back, the Giants can focus on the on-field issues such as the offense and the continuous special teams lapses. Eli Manning and company will need to find their rhythm offensively, which should come in time with practice along with the three preseason games. If it doesn't then the "Dream Team" will be waiting with open arms.