Falcons DE Osi Umenyiora made it clear that he wants to be back in Atlanta next season.
“I would love to stay, and I think I am,” Umenyiora said, via ESPN.com. “But you really never know what’s going to happen.”
Umenyiora, 32, signed a two-year deal worth $8.5 million that included $5 million guaranteed last year. In his first year with the team he produced 47 tackles, 7.5 sacks an interception and three forced fumbles, but the Falcons still have limited depth outside of Umenyiora.
Atlanta finished 29th in the league in sacks with 32 and figures to be in the market for help across their defensive line.
“I know they are going to do whatever is necessary to better their team,” Umenyiora said. “That’s just part of it. It’s never personal. I’ll always have a tremendous amount of respect and love for Mr. Dimitroff. He gave me a great opportunity. It’s pretty much whatever at this point.”
As things stand right now, Umenyiora will make $2.5 million for the 2014 season to go along with a $500,000 roster bonus that is due on March 26. Should the Falcons elect to release Umenyiora, they would free up $3.5 million in cap space. They are projected to have a little over $12 million right now, but releasing Umenyiora creates another hole to fill.
I’m sure we’ll be hearing more about Umenyiora and his status with the team in the coming weeks.