Dave Klein was the Giants' beat
writer for The Star-Ledger from 1961 to 1995.
He is the author of 26 books
and he is one of only three sportswriters to have covered all the Super Bowls.
Dave has allowed TEAM GIANTS to reprint some of his articles.
WHEN THE DEAL IS OFFICIAL,
THE GIANTS WILL DISPLAY A BOOKEND GUARD FOR HERNANDEZ
By Dave Klein
the Giants have unloaded another horrifically expensive commodity, linebacker
Olivier Vernon, and obtained a useable, productive right guard from the Cleveland
Browns, Kevin Zeitler.
The trade, which
includes a fifth-round draft pick going to the Giants and a fourth to the Browns,
was unofficially announced Friday, but since the NFL's trading period doesn't
start until next Wednesday, it couldn't be termed official.
After all, what would happen if Vernon fell on a chunk of Kryptonite, or if Zeitler
decided to take up spelunking?
who graded out as the best pass-blocking guard in the NFL last season (he allowed
just three sacks over the last two years) should automatically become a fixture
at right guard, and along with last year's rookie, Will Hernandez, provide quarterback
Eli Manning with some long-needed relief from the demons of defense.
It would surprise no one if we heard that Eli bought him a car or a house or something
of significant value to welcome him to the team. He might even be able to acquire
cheaper health insurance, you know?
Zeitler is 29 years old, was an All-American selection at the University of Wisconsin,
drafted in the first round by Cincinnati, where he spent five seasons, and then
signed with Cleveland, where he started immediately and stayed the last two years,
after he signed a contract worth $60 million over five years, making him the highest-paid
guard in the NFL.
Are the Giants finished?
By no means, and when the time period during which teams can sign Unrestricted
Free Agents begins next week, they are likely to attempt the first step toward
the rebuilding project promised by general manager Dave Gettleman.
Like where? Well, they need a safety and a linebacker, for instance, and a few
of those are available in free agency. If they do go through with the ill-advised
but growing in possibility trade of wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (again Cleveland
appears to be the leading candidate), it would be the very definition of blockbuster
and would provide a harvest of draft choices, including a first-rounder and probably
for 2020 as well. Would the Giants miss him? Yeah, on the field for sure.
More importantly, would they do it? Yeah, probably.
EXTRA POINTS - The Giants made a few in-house moves as well as the Zeitler trade.
... They resigned placekicker Aldrick Rosas whose sensational statistics included
32 field goals in 33 tries, with a long of 57 yards, and 31 of 32 PATs, for a
total of 127 points ... The 57-yard missile was the longest in Giants' history.
... Rosas was named to the Pro Bowl following the dreadful 5-11 season.
Also signed were fullback Elijhaa Penny and center Jon Halapio, who has a chance
to regain his starting job after playing well but landing on the Injured Reserve
list early in the season. ... Finally, a restricted free agent tender was extended
to wide receiver-kick returner Corey Coleman, 5-11, 195, who was a first-round
draft choice in 2016 by - guess who? - the Browns.
Check out Dave's website at E-GIANTS
where you can subscribe to his newsletters which
run much more frequently than what is available here.
- Team Giants
- Send a request to email@example.com
for a free week's worth of news!