It has been a little over 72 hours since it was first reported that the New York Giants had interest in landing free agent middle linebacker Desmond Bishop, who was cut by the Green Bay Packers last week.
Bishop had meetings with the Minnesota Vikings and Kansas City Chiefs last week, but he left those meetings without a contract and later told Pat Kirwan of CBS Sports and Tim Ryan of Sirius XM Radio that the Giants and Jacksonville Jaguars were now in the mix. He has since narrowed his list of potential suitors downto three: the Vikings, Chiefs and Giants.
Although Bishop has yet to make a decision on where he will call home next, he said publicly on his Twitter account on Friday that he is fortunate to have teams interested in his services for the 2013 season.
"Decisions decisions!!! Stuff spot, but great position to be in because I have options. Truly a blessing," he tweeted.
Bishop was cut by the Packers after six seasons due to the fact that he was set to make $3.464 million and was coming off a torn hamstring injury; an injury which cost him all of the 2012 year.
The Packers thought about putting Bishop on the trading block before the start of the season, but instead attempted to restructure him deal. Once those efforts failed, Green Bay released their former sixth-round pick of the 2007 NFL Draft. So now, Bishop has his pick of the teams, but which one would be the best landing spot for him?
There is the Chiefs, who are under a new direction under head coach Andy Reid and general manager John Dorsey, who was the former Packers Director of Football Operations, and helped scout Bishop when he was in college at California. The Chiefs, however, do have Derrick Johnson and Akeem Jordan already at middle linebacker; Jordan was brought in on a one-year deal by Dorsey to reunite with Reid when they were with the Philadelphia Eagles. On the outside, the team has Justin Houston and Tamba Hali, who are two of the team's best pass rushers on the squad, so trying to fit Bishop into that situation might be difficult.
Then there is the Vikings, the team Bishop met with first and a team some felt would be the instant choice for him to land once he was cut by Green Bay. That was until their current middle linebacker Erin Henderson, now taking over for the departed Jasper Brinkley, came out and said that "he was playing the Mike (MLB)" and he wasn't letting the spot go for anyone. Henderson has been taking all of the snaps for the team in the offseason at middle linebacker, and one would have to wonder if some feelings would get hurt if he was pushed out for another player.
This leaves the Giants, who have yet to give the starter's title to anyone at the start of camp. Right now, it's Mark Herzlich and Dan Connor who are battling it out in the middle for the Giants, but Bishop would be an upgrade at the position over both players. And if the Giants are interested in signing him, they are thinking the same thing and it's a big reason why Jerry Reese has gotten involved to begin with.
Bishop referred to the Giants as "having a great situation," which means that he recognizes that one, he could likely start immediately if he were in the fold, and two, the Giants are always a playoff-contending team and have won two out of the last six Super Bowls played. With all of the talent the Giants have assembled now on defense, they could be a potential force, if healthy. Throw in a former first-round draft pick like Aaron Curry and the potential signing of Bishop and Reese may have made a once average linebacker unit into a really strong one that could make a serious impact on the field.
Of the three teams mentioned, the Giants on paper could make the most sense for Bishop, who may not be looking for a big contract, but a chance to show the Packers that they made a mistake in cutting him. What better way for the Giants to improve on their 31st ranked defense of a season ago by bringing in an already good player with a chip on his shoulder? Sounds like a potential win-win for the Giants if they can close the deal.
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