The Quiet Before the Storm
John Fennelly , Lead Writer
The snow is nearly gone and the sun is out in all it’s glory this morning. NFL free agency unofficially began lat night at midnight. Have you noticed how things are very quiet right now? After all the noise the past few weeks, these next 75 hours promise to be real quiet.
The calm before the storm I call it. Teams and agents are making last ditch efforts to get agreements in place so they can announce them (or deny them) on Tuesday afternoon at 4pm. The league smartly opened up this pre-free agency period for negotiations to circumvent any tampering that may occur.
In years past teams and players would contact one another through backchannels and miraculously announce a deal at 4:01 on the first day of free agency. No longer. Teams still cannot contact players directly, but are permitted to have talks with player agents.
The Giants are allegedly trying to get their two top UFAs back in the fold before they hit the market – TE Martellus Bennett and OL Kevin Boothe.
Bennett will most likely hit the open market. Per Rotoworld:
According to the NY Daily News, the Giants are unwilling to enter a “bidding war” for free agent Martellus Bennett…..The Daily News anticipates the Buccaneers pursuing Bennett, and they have more money to spend than the G-Men. Per beat writer Ralph Vacchiano, Giants TE coach Mike Pope — among the most respected assistants in the game — “has his eye on an under-the-radar tight end in the draft.” The prospect is undisclosed.
Losing Bennett would not be the end of the world. The Giants could score that top TE in the draft or perhaps sign Dustin Keller in free agency as Shaun O’Hara suggested on the NFL Network this morning.
Boothe wants to come back to the Giants, but it’s been rumored he’s interested in testing the market. He may, but the consensus is he’ll be back.
“We’re having positive conversations,” Boothe’s agent said this week. “One day at a time.”
DE Osi Umenyiora has not ruled out a return to the Giants. He says no matter where he lands he intends to win the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2013. Very doubtful”, folks….
“I’d love to return there. That’s home. I spent a third of my life there in New York,” Umenyiora said on the NFL Network yesterday. “There’s a lot of things that are going to go on there, a lot of people they have to take care of. Obviously they have Jason there, they have Justin Tuck, two outstanding defensive ends. They have other young players they have to take care of, so it’s going to be a a tough situation. But obviously I would love to return, but this is my first chance at free agency, so I have to definitely go see what’s out there.”