Thursday, October 27, 2011

Jacobs, Amukamara, LBs

Brandon Jacobs interview with Men's Health, a fitness magazine came out this week apparently indicating that he did not expect to be with the Giants come next year. Generally when players make comments like these, they are trying to get some attention and get the coaches and the front office to reaffirm that they really are part of their future plans. It is a call to get their egos stroked and usually they are way off base. In this case, I think Jacobs is probably correct. Giants spent a lot of money on Bradshaw and they probably feel he is on the verge of becoming a star, if he has not already become one. Add to that Jacobs apparent propensity to getting hurt and the salary cap considerations and you see why he might be expendable. Under Jacobs restructured deal, his salary next year would $4.4M, with a 500K roster bonus due in March for a total of $4.9M, which is the amount that would be shaved off the salary cap if he is cut. Giants would still be charged the 1/4 remainder of his guaranteed money under his original four year deal which was reported to be $13M, though that might have changed also under the restructure. Nevertheless, Jacobs is secondary in the running game and even if his carries increase somewhat, it just does not make sense to invest so much money in the RB position. Giants should give some carries to Da'rel Scott and see what they have with him. They should trade or cut Jacobs after the year and replace him next year with a short yardage back that is a little more flexible and cheaper than BJ. Andre Brown would suit me just fine.

Giants coaches were all pumped up because Amukamara actually made some good defensive plays in practice. I can't remember a time when the progress of a rookie DB appeared as if it would have such a big affect on the prospects of the team. I have been posting this for a while now and the media finally picked up on it. Amukamara contributing at a decent level would permit the Giants to slide Rolle back to his S position and not have to play the nickel CB when the opposing offense uses three or four WRs. This would also allow Grant to spend more time on the bench instead of being one of the 2 primary safeties in these nickel or dime defensive packages.

It is interesting how much of the league is going to these spread offenses and the quick 3 step drops to mitigate the big pass rush. CBs will then edge ahead of pass rushing DEs in importance to the defense. They may already be more important, but this might emphasize the change. It also probably means that LBs will become more important again, though the style in which they will have to play will change. The big bruising, run stopping LBs will be less important than quick, fast LBs that can actually cover a TE or RB coming out on these short routes. They will also have to take good drops in zone coverage and bother, if not actually defend some slot receivers. In this regard, Giants are well equipped at LB with speedy young LBs J Williams and Greg Jones. Herzlich is also a very atheltic LB and Boley, finally healthy this year has shown very good speed.

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