Mar 312009

New York Giants Pre-Season Opponents Announced: Although all of the dates and times have not yet been released, the NFL announced the pre-season opponents for each NFL team yesterday. The Giants opponents and where the games will be played is provided in the 2009 Schedule section of the website. The Giants’ first pre-season game, against the Carolina Panthers, will be nationally televised on ESPN.

Burress’ Lawyer Seeking Adjournment: According to various press reports, the lawyer for WR Plaxico Burress will seek an adjournment at his long-awaited hearing held today. Burress was charged with two felony weapons charges in December for his accidental firing of a weapon in a Manhattan night club.

If the hearing is in fact adjourned, a new date for the hearing will be set. It is speculated that Burress’ lawyer and the Manhattan district attroney’s office are working on a plea bargain and the hang up appears to be whether Burress will have to serve jail time or not.

Mar 282009

HB Danny Ware Signs His Tender: According to the NFL Players Association, exclusive rights free agent HB Danny Ware (New York Giants) has signed his 1-year, $460,000 tender. Ware was the last of the tendered exclusive rights free agents to re-sign.

Notes and Quotes on WR Plaxico Burress: According to ESPN, the lawyer for WR Plaxico Burress has been in contact with the Manhattan district attorney’s office for several months to have his client’s case “resolved” so the receiver who was charged with two felony weapons charges last December can avoid jail time. Burress is due in Manhattan Criminal Court on Tuesday for a pretrial hearing.

Head Coach Tom Coughlin on WR Plaxico Burress’ legal troubles: “I’m very concerned about Plaxico and his family and what’s going to happen here. It’s been a terrible experience. You hope for his family he’s able to come out of this and put his life back in order.”

Coughlin on how losing Burress last year affected the team: “There’s no doubt a player of that ability level is going to be missed. It was very upsetting. Especially when you have a great sense of team. The phrases we use — I really believe they buy into that stuff — ‘Don’t let the other guys down.’ Here is a situation where guys were let down.”

Mar 252009

Injury Update on Osi Umenyiora: DE Osi Umenyiora, who missed all of last season with a knee injury, says his knee feels fine. “I don’t feel any pain at all anymore,” Umenyiora said.

Umenyiora was asked if the knee injury would prevent him from being the same player he was before the surgery. “I’ll be better,” Umenyiora responded, “because the injury forced me to work on my legs. That is something that I never used to do before. Because I had knee problems I would not do any leg (work) at all. So now I have been working on it and I feel quicker and I feel like I can actually leap now.  So I think I will be better.”

Giants Deny That They Offered Players for Braylon Edwards: With all of the Giants’ beat writers at the Meadowlands yesterday, most of the papers reported “anonymous sources” as saying the Giants never offered any of their players in any potential trade package for Cleveland Browns’ WR Braylon Edwards. It had been reported that the Giants had offered wide receivers Domenik Hixon or Mario Manningham in addition to draft picks (see “News and Notes” updates from earlier this week).

Article on DE Osi Umenyiora: Osi Umenyiora Ready to Return to New York Giants After Knee Surgery by Mike Garafolo of The Star-Ledger

Mar 242009

New York Giants Receive 3rd Round Compensatory Pick: The Giants have received an additional 3rd round “compensatory” pick (100th selection overall) in the upcoming NFL Draft as compensation for their 2008 free agent losses. Combined with the their own seven draft picks (one in each round) and the two picks received from the TE Jeremy Shockey trade (2nd and 5th round), the Giants now have 10 picks in the upcoming draft. A 3rd round pick is the highest a team can be awarded. Compensatory picks cannot be traded.

Giants Will Play Thanksgiving Day Game: The NFL announced yesterday that the Giants will play the Denver Broncos at Invesco Field at Mile High on Thanksgiving Day. The game will be televised nationally on The NFL Network at 8:20PM EST.

This will be the Giants first Thanksgiving Day game in 17 years. The Giants last played the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving in 1992, losing 30-3. The Giants have only played on Thanksgiving Day twice since 1938.

The rest of the 2009 regular-season schedule will be announced in April.

Browns Confirm Giants’ Interest in WR Braylon Edwards: Cleveland Browns’ General Manager George Kokinis confirmed yesterday that he has talked to the Giants regarding a potential trade for WR Braylon Edwards (see “News and Notes” from yesterday for story). Kokinis said he spoke to Giants’ General Manager Jerry Reese at the NFL Combine in February, but nothing came of the trade talks.

“We exchanged ideas about everything, but nothing really culminated into specifics,” said Kokinis. “I’m excited to have Braylon on this team. He brings a dimension that not a lot of receivers can bring in relation to going up and attacking the football. He had extremely good production a couple years ago and we’re anticipating he has that this year.”

Quotes: General Manager Jerry Reese on LB Michael Boley: “Michael Boley will play the (weakside) linebacker for us and he has unusual cover skills for a linebacker. We like him in that respect because we play those guys like (Eagles’ HB) Brian Westbrook and (TE Jason Witten) from Dallas who is such a tough cover. Hopefully (Boley) can counter those guys on third down — the Westbrook types, and so many other good players we face. Michael can play the run and the pass but he’s an unusual cover guy against tight ends and running backs. Hopefully he’ll bring something to the table in that respect.”

Mar 232009

New York Giants Interested in Braylon Edwards?: The Star-Ledger and The Daily News are reporting that Giants Insider claims the Giants have inquired about the availability of WR Braylon Edwards (Cleveland Browns).  Edwards is currently under contract so the Giants would have to obtain Edwards via a trade.

According to the papers, the Giants supposedly offered the two draft picks the team received from the Saints last year for TE Jeremy Shockey (2nd and 5th round picks). The Browns supposedly wanted to include WR Steve Smith and the  Giants turned that request down. The Giants supposedly then countered by offering WR Domenik Hixon or WR Mario Manningham and the Browns turned down that offer.

Publicly, Reese Continues to Say the Giants Would Like Burress Back: General Manager Jerry Reese briefly spoke to the press at the NFL Meetings over the weekend and continues to publicly say the Giants would welcome back WR Plaxico Burress, who has been charged with two felony weapons charges stemming from an off-the-field incident last November.

“(Burress) said to me he’s made some bad decisions,” said Reese. “Everybody knows that. I think he’s ready to move on and he told me the last time I spoke to him that, ‘I think the light has really come on for me.’ So I think he is ready to move on with his life, a new chapter in his life. Hopefully, he will able to do that. The legal process will tell the story.”

Five Prime Time Games for Giants in 2009?: According to The Bergen Record, the Giants expect to have five prime time games scheduled in 2009. The schedule for the 2009 season will not be officially released until next month.

Mar 182009

Craig Dahl Signs With Rams; Kay-Jay Harris Not Tendered: Unrestricted free agent safety Craig Dahl (New York Giants) signed with the St. Louis Rams yesterday. Dahl is the second Giants’ safety to join former Giants’ defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo in St. Louis. The first was James Butler.

Had the Giants tendered Dahl, as an exclusive rights free agent he would have been unable to sign with another team. Obviously, the Giants did not tender Dahl.

The Daily News is reporting that HB Kay-Jay Harris, who is still recovering from a career-threatening foot injury, also was not tendered as a potential exclusive rights free agent.

According to The Daily News, exclusive rights free agent HB Danny Ware was expected to sign his tender on Monday.


Mar 172009

New York Giants Offseason Begins: The Giants’ offseason strength training and conditioning program began yesterday.

The Giants will hold nine “voluntary” Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices in May and June. In addition, the Giants’ rookie mini-camp will be held on May 8-9. The veteran mini-camp will be held June 16-18.

Renaldo Wynn Agrees to Terms With Redskins: According to The Washington Post, unrestricted free agent DE Renaldo Wynn (New York Giants) has agreed to terms with the Washington Redskins. The contract is reportedly a 1-year deal.

Bradshaw Finishes His Jail Time: According to press reports, HB Ahmad Bradshaw has finished the final half of his 2-month sentence in a Virginia jail. The original 60-day sentence was for an undisclosed probation violation, stemming from an incident that occurred when Bradshaw was a juvenile.

It had been previously reported that Bradshaw’s lawyer cut a deal with the courts last offseason so his client could have his jail time split into two tranches, the first being served in June and July in 2008.

Mar 122009

James Butler Signs With Rams: As had been expected, unrestricted free agent safety James Butler (New York Giants) has signed with the St. Louis Rams. The contract is reported to be a 4-year, $17 million deal.

Butler is the second free agent the Giants have lost this offseason. HB Derrick Ward signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers earlier this month.

NFLPA Grievance Hearing Against Giants Postponed: The NFL Players Association (NFLPA) grievance hearing against the New York Giants on behalf of WR Plaxico Burress has been postponed until April 1st. The hearing will now take place one day after Burress’ next court date on his two felony gun charges related to his self-wounding in a Manhattan nightclub in November 2008.

The NFLPA charges that the Giants are in violation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) by withholding a $1-million deferred payment of Burress’ signing bonus.

Another NFLPA grievance against the Giants for their 4-game suspension without pay of Burress in December 2008 will be heard in mid-June.

Article on Giants’ New Practice Facility: New York Giants Practice Facility to Open in May, Could Host Training Camp in 2010 by Jenny Vrentas of The Star-Ledger

Notes: The Giants’ offseason strength training and conditioning program begins on Monday.

Mar 062009

New York Giants Not Interested in Terrell Owens: Undisclosed sources have told The Star-Ledger, The Daily News, and Newsday that the Giants have absolutely no interest in signing WR Terrell Owens, who was officially waived by the Dallas Cowboys yesterday.

New York Giants Not Interested in Trading Kiwanuka: Newsday is reporting that the Giants are not interested in trading DE Mathias Kiwanuka. There has been speculation that the Giants might offer Kiwanuka for WR Braylon Edwards of the Cleveland Browns. Newsday says that while the Giants may be interested in Edwards, they will not trade Kiwanuka in order to obtain him.

Mar 052009

New York Giants Sign Safety C.C. Brown: The Giants signed unrestricted free agent safety C.C. Brown (Houston Texans) yesterday. The contract is reportedly a 1-year deal.

“C.C. is a young veteran safety,” said General Manager Jerry Reese. “He is a physical player who has played a lot of football in this league in his short career. We expect him to come in and create great competition at this position and strengthen it as well.”

“Brown is a physical player who will come down to the line of scrimmage,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “He has made the calls in the secondary and can get people lined up. With the situation that we have with James Butler (who is a free agent), there is a need to go ahead and create the competitiveness that is necessary for everyone to reach their full potential. I think adding C.C. Brown is bringing us closer to that.”

“I’m happy to be with this team,” Brown said. “It’s a great opportunity for me to come here and get a chance to play in the playoffs. One of my main objectives was to get to a winning team and be part of a winning environment.”

Brown missed most of last season with a fracture right forearm. “Now it’s back to normal,” said Brown. “I’m ready to get out there, run around and hit people.”

Giants Sign TE Lee Vickers: The Giants signed “street” free agent TE Lee Vickers yesterday. In college, Vickers was a defensive end. Since he entered the NFL in 2006, Vickers has spent time with the Steelers, Eagles, and Ravens as a tight end. He was last with the Ravens, who waived him in August 2008.

“He converted to tight end and he has good hands,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “I think we can get some versatility out of him as a blocker and a short-range receiver, but also on special teams. He’s pretty good in the wedge.”

As previously reported, the Giants had also worked out “street” free agent TE Ben Troupe. But Vickers was signed instead.

Article on Defensive Coordinator Bill Sheridan and the Free Agent Moves: Giants Bank on Talent to Overcome Inexperience by Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports