So you've all heard by now: yesterday New York Giants General Manager Jerry Reese gave pink slips to veterans Ahmad Bradshaw, Michael Boley and Chris Canty and the Big Blue world is turned upside down. We here at Giants 101 are here to tell you to take a deep breath. It's okay. We're going to get through this together…because it's all for the better.
Let's face facts here: a quick look at the balance sheet and the medical history for each player makes it pretty clear that Reese didn't much have a choice. This was business. Good business at that.
Bradshaw: Another foot surgery, how many screws in both feet, likely third on the depth chart to Andre Brown and David Wilson. Was it even in the question that the team could afford to pay him $3.75 million this year?
Canty: Never seemed to quite round back into form after knee troubles that came and went all year. Hard to spend $6.5 million on a guy like that, no matter how good a player or how good a leader.
Boley: Probably the biggest surprise here, but $4 million is a lot of money for a guy who was pulled off the field last year as he played all year through a hamstring injury. Probably didn't help for Boley that Jacquian Williams is banging on the door.
It may be a hard pill to swallow to watch players you like get the axe. You've grown to admire them. Maybe you even own their jersey. But his kind of turnover is simply part of the way today's NFL works: older players coming off serious (Canty), chronic (Bradshaw) or even nagging (Boley) injuries don't justify their salaries and teams move on.
And, if you're still having trouble swallowing that pill, get ready for this: there's more to come. Corey Webster and his $7 million, David Diehl and his $4 million and even Chris Snee at $6.7 million and David Baas at $4.25 shouldn't be totally off the radar.
Harken back to the dark, early days of 2007 when Reese came in and cut a handful of veterans, saved some money and put some younger players in a position to contribute. My point is, nobody was crying about Luke Petitgout 20 games later.
Younger players move up. New faces move in. Time to move on.
And that is what this is all about, my friends. Moving on. The Giants have to get younger and they have to retain some of their younger players coming up for contracts. And the money had to come from somewhere.
$14 million. That's how much, give or take, the Giants save this year from cutting these three players alone.
That $14 million, maybe more once all the cuts come in, will go a long, long way in doling out contracts for guys that are younger, healthier and more productive than the guys who just hit the street.
In the immediate, the Giants will need around $10 million this year for the franchise tag for Will Beatty; both Martellus Bennett and Kenny Phillips are going to need big new deals if they're going to stay Giants; Jason Pierre-Paul is on the verge of an absolutely mind-boggling contract; and, if you haven't heard, although I'm sure you have, both Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks are starting to talk contract with the team.
So say your fond farewells to these three guys and the guys that will join them on the exit line. Feel free to memorialize their Giants careers in the comments section.
For us, it's time to talk about whether Jacquian Williams is ready to step in for Boley, who will line up next to Linval Joseph at defensive tackle, and whether or not there will be enough money for Beatty, Nicks, Phillips, et al.
Stop crying. We have an offseason to conduct.
Also…Ahmad Bradshaw, Andre Brown, Chris Canty, Chris Snee, David Baas, David Diehl, David Wilson, Football, Hakeem Nicks, Jacquian Williams, Jason Pierre-Paul, Michael Boley, New York, New York Giants, NFL