The New York Giants have announced the release of DE Mathias Kiwanuka.
“Mathias has a warrior mentality,” said Giants general manager Jerry Reese. “He has been the ultimate team player for this franchise, and was a true pro from day one.”
“The thing that has always impressed me about Kiwi is how serious he is about the game,” said head coach Tom Coughlin. “He was always prepared and always in outstanding condition and played very hard. And he had some nasty in him.
“His character and professionalism and serious approach to the game will be missed.”
There has been talk for several months that Kiwanuka was likely to be a cap casualty in the weeks leading up to free agency, so this really shouldn’t come as a huge surprise.
A report from Monday mentioned that the Giants will use their franchise tag on DE Jason Pierre-Paul to prevent him testing the open market, which means they could really use the extra cap space.
Kiwanuka, 31, was in the final year of his four-year, $21.75 million contract that included $10.95 million guaranteed. He had a base salary of $4.775 million coming his way in 2015 to go along with a cap figure of $7.45 million.
According to OverTheCap.com, releasing Kiwanuka will free up $4.825 million in available cap space while creating $2.625 million in dead money.
In 2014, Kiwanuka recorded 28 tackles, 2.5 sacks and two forced fumbles for the Giants over the course of 11 games. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 57 defensive end in a 4-3 system out of 59 qualifying players last season.