NEW YORK (WFAN) — Buckle up, Giants fans. The Osi Umenyiora contract drama just shifted into high gear.
The defensive end is a bargain with one season at $3.975 million remaining on his seven-year contract. He wants a long-term extension, and it could cost him training camp — or possibly his future in New York.
This weekend, Giants general manager Jerry Reese said the team had offered Umenyiora contract extensions for each of the past two seasons. That prompted the 30-year-old to go on the offensive — and fight the perception that he’s just another greedy pro athlete.
“Last year I was offered incentives. This year they offered me in guaranteed money, HALF of what they just gave Kiwi (Mathias Kiwanuka) guaranteed. HALF,” Umenyiora wrote in an email to the New York Daily News. “I’m not making that up. Then Jerry tells the world they offered me an extension and I turned it down. And I look like a greedy pig for turning it down. Hilarious.”
Umenyiora sent a similar email to the Newark Star-Ledger.
The Giants extended Kiwanuka last week for three years at $21.75 million with $10.95 million guaranteed. Half of that would be around $5.5 million, not close to the $15 million guaranteed Umenyiora alluded to wanting in a recent interview on WFAN.
“Obviously, you see Trent Cole doing what he did, signing his extension,” Umeniora told Boomer & Carton. “You see Robert Mathis, he’s 31 years old, who I feel like I’m just as good as. You see the numbers that they signed.”
Cole received a four-year extension from Philadelphia worth $48 million with $15 million guaranteed. Indianapolis’ Mathis also got a four-year deal, his for $36 million with $17 million guaranteed.
“Our first choice with respect to Osi is that he will play for the Giants and retire as a Giant,” Reese said after the NFL draft ended on Saturday. “That is what we would like to happen. Osi has been offered an extension two years in a row now. So we would still like to make it work. Hopefully it will work out. But all of our options are always open.”
Umenyiora’s “anger bubbled over” when he heard Reese’s remarks, according to the Daily News.
“I will be going completely silent after I send you this because it’s obvious talking does nothing!” he wrote to the paper. “Things will be very interesting, that’s for sure.”
Umenyiora had 12.5 sacks last season, including the playoffs. He was a short holdout and then missed the first three games of the regular season after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery in mid-August.
The defensive end unsuccessfully tried to force a trade or a new deal during the preseason, after he claimed in an affidavit that Reese reneged on an earlier promise to restructure his contract.
What should the Giants do with Osi, trade the man or pay him? Sound off below…