With the NFL Lockout over teams can now turn their attention to constructing their 2011 teams. ESPN New York wondered today if the New York Giants will be building a roster that does not include star defensive end Osi Umenyiora.
"The Giants have said that they are not going to cut him, John Mara, the Giants owner has said that," Schefter said when going over potential big names to be cut on SportsCenter this morning. "However there have been rumblings around the league that Osi Umenyiora would be on the bubble. I think he'd like to be released to be able to shop his services to another team."
Umenyiora, of course, has been unhappy with his Giants' contract. He filed an affadiavit to the Brady lawsuit during the lockout alleging that Giants general manager Jerry Reese lied to him about renegotiating his current deal. He has also threatened to hold out if he does not get a new contract, according to various reports.
Umenyiora is a pass-rush specialist who had 11.5 sacks a season ago and forced a record 10 fumbles while doing so. He has seemingly been unhappy with the Giants for the past couple of seasons, even though he was incredibly productive rushing the passer in 2010.
Umenyiora seems to feel he is in the "elite" class of defensive ends and wants to be paid that way. The Giants may not feel the same way.
It is difficult to imagine that the Giants would simply release the 29-year-old Umenyiora, a two-time Pro-Bowler. They have little time, however, to find out if they can co-exist with him. If he is determined to hold out, he may force the Giants to move on without him.