Braylon Edwards Will Be a Giant, but When?

Pro Football NYCSenior Writer IApril 30, 2009

ORCHARD PARK, NY - NOVEMBER 17: Braylon Edwards #17 of the Cleveland Browns celebrates a 72-yard touchdown run by teammateJerome Harrison (not shown) against the Buffalo Bills on November 17, 2008 at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, New York. The Browns won 29-27 (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)

As I sift through the rubble that the NFL Draft always leaves behind, I'm feeling a bit empty. Perhaps it's because the Giants didn't pull the trigger on a deal that would land them Cleveland's Braylon Edwards.

I'm not alone in my disappointment; there are many who have given the Giants a "B" grade this past week, even though it appears that GM Jerry Reese has had another productive draft.

Yes, they drafted two highly regarded wideouts in Hakeem Nicks and Ramses Barden. Yes, they got a potential seambreaker in Travis Beckum. And yes, David Tyree is healthy and ready to return.

All of that should allay my fears, as it appears that the Giants sufficiently made up the losses of both Plaxico Burress and Amani Toomer.

But I remain uneasy.

Even with the additions and their other receiving options (WRs Steve Smith, Mario Manningham, Sinorice Moss, and Domenik Hixon and TE Kevin Boss), the team is still lacking that standout receiver that keeps opposing defensive coordinators up at night.

That is where Edwards should come in. He would be that guy.

According to ESPN's John Clayton, the deal could be done if the Giants were willing to pay the price. According to Clayton, right now the cost would be a first- and a third-round draft pick. But the Giants will not submit to that, and I agree that they shouldn't.

Good thing is, they may not have to.

Edwards is a free agent after this season, and it is widely known that he would love to come to New York. Bottom line is that he's likely to be a Giant in 2010, no matter what goes down this summer.

But the bad thing is, the team really needs him now.

The Giants will wait until after mini-camp to decide if they want to deal. If the new receiver group looks like it could work out, the team will wait for Edwards to become a free agent and attempt to sign him then.

But there are several factors that still lead me to believe that the Giants may not wait until next year to get Edwards and that a swap could get done in some form in the next few weeks.

New York will not give up a first-round pick, I assure you that. But a second or third rounder, along with a player, could happen. It appears the Browns know their leverage is slipping and will listen to alternative offers. They have recently been shoring up their receiving corps, which indicates Edwards is on his way out sooner rather than later.

The life-after-Braylon groundwork is already being put in place by the Browns: The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported last week that Edwards had stopped participating in the team's offseason conditioning program, perhaps to keep him from getting injured and reducing his trade value.

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Then, last Saturday, the Browns drafted two receivers in the second round (Brian Robiskie and Mohamed Massaquoi), and this week, they brought in 6'5" veteran Drew Bennett for a look-see.

Let's not forget they signed former Giant David Patten as a free agent this past winter as well.

The only question left to ask about Braylon Edwards coming to New York is...


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