The wait is over. No more franchise tag controversy. The New York Giants signed franchise-tagged defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul to a four year, $62 million contract extension, which could increase to $66 million with incentives.
The Giants avoided a “Carolina Panthers-Josh Norman,” situation and concentrated on keeping Pierre-Paul a part of their stalwart defense for the next four years. Pierre-Paul has expressed his desire to play on a long term contract, tiring of the one year franchise tag deals. Pierre-Paul got his wish, and Giants fans can breathe a sigh of relief, knowing that they don’t have to worry about Pierre-Paul joining another team. Pierre-Paul is sticking around with the team that drafted him in the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
“This is where I wanted to be,” said Pierre-Paul. “I couldn’t imagine me being anywhere else. I’m back for four years and I’m ready to get after it.”
“We’re happy to get a long-term deal, with Jason,” said Giants general manager Jerry Reese. “Not only is he one of our best players, he is one of our leaders.”
Pierre-Paul will be wreaking havoc alongside fellow defensive end Olivier Vernon and defensive tackle Damon Harrison, one unit that is sure to cause problems for the rest of the league. The defensive front was a figurative brick wall for opposing runners, as well as heat seeking missiles against the quarterback. The Giants defense ranked tenth in yards allowed per game (339.7 yards/game), seventh in yards per play (5.1 yards/play), and second in total points allowed per game (284 points/game). The great Giants’ teams of the past were built on defense, now this unit can be one for the history books for the foreseeable future.
“We’re going to create history,” Pierre-Paul said. “We made it to the playoffs, but unfortunately I wasn’t there to play. But I’m looking to get back to the playoffs this year with that great defensive line that we have, and the great defense that coach Spags is going to put out there.”
The Giants approached this offseason with the “win-now” route, and now it has all come together. Adding Brandon Marshall to pair alongside Odell Beckham Jr, signing offensive lineman D.J. Fluker and tight end/fullback Rhett Ellison to shore up the offensive line, and now Pierre-Paul is back to keep the majority of the defense intact. With these signings, the Giants are working towards their ultimate goal, winning their fifth Super Bowl. Pierre-Paul see this goal in his sights as well.
“We won a Super Bowl here, and I’m looking forward to putting a fifth trophy in the case,” said Pierre-Paul.
The dream continues for Pierre-Paul. Even after the infamous fireworks accident, Pierre-Paul proved to the critics last season that that would not hold him down. He kicked down that figurative door and burst through it, not using that injury as a crutch.
“I’ll be way better,” said Pierre-Paul. “Last year, I was still making adjustments. But as time goes on, it’s part of me and I’m going to use it. Every day, I’m learning something new with it.”
Now, he gets to use that determination to help the team that drafted him reach the next level of success. More importantly, he gets to stay with his family. The Big Blue Family.
“I’m happy to be here, I’m blessed to be here,” said Pierre-Paul. “It can’t be any better. I’m a Giants for life right now.”