The New York Giants waited until almost the last possible minute, but ultimately the team decided to exercise Prince Amukamara's fifth-year option on his rookie deal last week, likely keeping the cornerback in blue through the 2015 season for $6.898 million. It also allows the team to negotiate a long-term deal with Prince should they choose, but above all else, it gives the youngster peace of mind going into the 2014 season.
"Definitely relieved. Everyone wants to be wanted, and if they didn't pick up my option it would just show they didn't trust me," Amukamara told the New York Daily News. "I'm not going to lie. It would have hurt a little for them not to pick it up."
Despite his option being picked up, Amukamara is already looking ahead a bit. While most players are anxious to hit free agency and cash in following their rookie deal, Prince seems more tuned to remaining with the Giants — and not just through 2015, but well beyond.
"Of course I was nervous," Amukamara said. "Everyone wants to be a free agent as soon as they can but free agency isn’t always for sure. … The option definitely kind of gives me that security. Definitely kind of gives me that one more year to prove to them I was worth the option or maybe I’m worth a long-term deal, so I guess we’ll see."
Ultimately, Prince says, he would like the security of a long-term deal and to not have to think about/worry about free agency.
"Long-term deals give you security," he added. "But my job is to play and my agent’s job is to handle those things. But I would definitely be lying if I said I wouldn’t want a long-term deal. But I know only I can control that."
In order to get that long-term deal he's hoping for, Amukamara will need to make that leap into elite status that many have been waiting for in recent years. He certainly has it in him and, hopefully, the addition of Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie will give him the necessary push.
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