Landon Collins Unofficially Leaves Giants; Media Circus Ensues
One day after it was reported by Josina Anderson of ESPN that the New York Giants were not in talks to re-sign safety Landon Collins, Anderson reported again that he arrived at the team facility Wednesday to clean out his locker and say goodbye to the team, indicating that he will play elsewhere in 2019. Although, there was a conflicting tweet from Paul Schwartz of the New York Post, saying that Collins did not clean out his locker.
However, Collins replied to Schwartz’s tweet, saying “The stuff in that locker that I have left I do not need,” which implies that Anderson’s initial report was true.
Regardless of all the media chaos that resulted from Collins’ actions, the bottom line is, the Giants will be without Collins for their future, and they need to replace him and focus on their next move. There is the idea the Giants could come in and re-sign Collins, which would eliminate all ambiguity of his future with the team, although that is highly unlikely at this point.
Collins was selected to the Pro Bowl three times in his career and has been the leader of the Giants defense since becoming the starting strong safety in 2016, after starting at free safety in 2015, his rookie year. Since being drafted, Collins has 437 tackles, 32 passes defended, eight interceptions and three forced fumbles.
Based on those stats, one would think that the Giants would do everything in their power to lock him in for the long term future, but the Giants have reasons to refrain from giving Collins a long term contract, or even a franchise tag, which would secure Collins for the 2019 season.
One of those reasons could be that the money given to Collins could deter the chances of signing other players, whether it be in free agency, future draft picks, or even players that are currently on the team. Plus, Collins may ask for more money than the Giants are willing to give him, which could turn into an ugly turn of events between both sides.
Honestly, even if Collins does demand a large contract, he is 25-years old and will soon be entering his prime, and if I were the Giants, I would have re-signed him and then drafted or signed players on defense to build around Collins. The Giants have a long road ahead, but while their offense has weapons in Odell Beckham, Jr. and Saquon Barkley, the defense would have been anchored around Collins and some younger players to solidify the defense. However, since Collins’ return to the Giants seems doubtful, they will have to rebuild the defense, alongside finding a quarterback for the long term future.
It is a large task, but the Giants will have to complete it sooner, rather than later.
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