Letters to the Editor: February 16, 2013
With the offseason in full swing, letters have been few and far in between. I’ll post when I get enough letters for a column. – PT
Do you have any idea why Jerrel Jernigan hasn’t really contributed anything to the team to date? Seems like a third round pick should have done at least something after 2 seasons. – Richard B.
Rich, usually when a player isn’t getting a lot of opportunity, it usually means one of the following is happening:
1) the player’s preparation isn’t what it needs to be; OR
2) the competition is so tight that the player is just missing getting a uniform every week.
Jernigan started to get opportunities at the end of the season last year, so it looks as though they wanted to see what he could do and, that he remains in the plans for 2013.
It is legitimate to ask why the Giants are confronted with one of the most severe salary cap problems in the NFL. We can expect further player cuts and some salary restructuring but it is problematic whether enough can be done to meet the extensive salary needs. conceivably, they could lose both Cruz and Bennett. Why this problem?
I look first at the comprehensive Draftec study which concluded that the Giants ranked 29th in draft productivity over the past five years. I also fault Reese for his refusal to use the draft to meet current needs. This is compounded by Coughlin’s reluctance to give young players playing time making it difficult for them to develop and for the team to judge whether they can serve adequate replacements.
This has resulted in filling holes by relying on free agents who are often past their prime and often overpaid. I am sure you will disagree but I think the Giants have not had a superior GM since George Young nor a superior head coach since Parcells —Nat K.
Nat, I think there are many factors that contribute to the cap issues the Giants have had. I think the biggest one is that historically they have back loaded contracts, which lead to veterans who tend to experience a drop off in their skills having high base salaries. This is usually done based on the assumption that the salary cap is going o increase.
Well guess what? It has remained flat lined since the new CBA and it doesn’t appear that it will be increasing much over the life of the current CBA, so I would think this team will continue to have cap issues every year.
Now with that said, the new CBA should also help in that rookie draft pick and undrafted free agent contracts will be kept in line. If a draft pick or undrafted free agent outperforms his deal, he will be compensated on his next contract. If not, thanks for the memories, and see ya.
That’s where the “bargain basement” free agent signings come in. Really if you think about it, you are replacing a player who didn’t live up to his expectations with a guy who while not an All-Pro, obviously did something right to last as long as he did in the league. Another benefit to signing thee aging veterans to one-year minimum deals is that their base salaries do not count for 100% against the cap.
Regarding the draft, The Sports Xchange usually does an exercise every year in which they look at the last five years of a team’s draft and calculate the number of starters, backups, guys out of the league, and guys on other teams.You might want to look for that study – I believe we’ll be writing it late March. If you look at all 32 teams and then weigh it against playoff appearances, I think you’ll see that the Giants’ draft history isn’t as poor as you seem to think it is.
Last point – you are being unfair in your criticism of Coughlin’s use of rookies. Would you rather see a rookie out there who isn’t ready and who makes mistakes that potentially most the team games just because he’ a draft pick.
Look at Jayron Hosley, for example. He was a draft pick, yet people were grumbling every time he made a mistake. Eventually he came out of the lineup for a while so he could go back to the basics and improve. The same could have been said for Jacquian Williams in his rookie year – how many times did he take a gamble that didn’t paid off, only to be burned in coverage?
I realize you’re probably talking about David Wilson. I have said this a thousand times and I hope this is the last time I have to say it. You don’t put a running back on the field that can’t pass block. You just don’t.
Now you’re probably going to say, well put him on the field in certain situations but you know what? Every time he goes on the field, you’re eliminating several things the defense needs to watch for. You night as well flash on the scoreboard the play you’re going to run.
Bottom line — people have much too high expectations for rookies. guys who come in and do well out of the chute are few and far in between. you have to let them develop and everyone develops at his own pace.
I don’t see them losing Cruz. He’s a RFA – if they slap the highest tender on him, I think they’ll be able to keep him another year. I’d be stunned if Bennett leaves base don what I know right now.
Last but not least Nat, I’d like to remind you that George Young, for as good as he was, also had his issues with managing the salary cap and in fact I can remember it taking Ernie Accorsi a couple of seasons to get it straightened out.
Young and Parcells will always be held in high esteem by Giants fans –I get that – but to suggest that Reese and Coughlin, both of whom have won just as many Super Bowls as Parcells and Young, aren’t as good is ridiculous.
Also look at each duo’s playoff history — what percentage of their tenure did they produce playoff teams?