In case you’re unfamilar with the Osi Umenyiora situation here’s a quick synopsis. The Giants and Umenyiora supposedly discussed a longterm contract extension but it has happened yet. Now Umenyiora is considering holding out in attempt to force the Giants to pay him a top-five salary for defensive ends. The only issue is that as of right now the Giants are sitting at $131.3 million (NFL Team Cap Space) which is $11.3 million over the cap making things very difficult in the interim.
Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPNNewYork.com highlights a report from his fellow ESPN colleague Adam Schefter who mentioned that the Giants could end up releasing Umenyiora rather than signing him to a longterm extension.
“The Giants have said that they are not going to cut him, John Mara, the Giants owner has said that,” Schefter said. “However there have been rumblings around the league that Osi Umenyiora would be on the bubble. I think he’d like to be released to be able to shop his services to another team.”
Youngmisuk mentions that Umenyiora is not believed to be one of the teams offseason priorities.
“In my mind, the Giants need to re-sign Mathias Kiwanuka before deciding what to do with Umenyiora,” writes Youngmisuk. “Sure, Jason Pierre-Paul is waiting in the wings but the Giants operate best with several pass rushers in the stable.”
I get the logic here and considering their cap situation, they are going to have to make some tough decisions with players such as Ahmad Bradshaw and Steve Smith who are both set to be unrestricted free agents. The next few days are going to be absolute chaos so why not shop him in the interim because there is certain to be a number of teams interested in obtaining a top-ten defensive end. Netting draft picks should be their top priority if they’re actually considering moving on without a great player. Simply releasing a great player because of cap space seems like they would be minimizing the value of the player.