New York Giants free agent defensive end Osi Umenyiora has had some ups and downs with the organization, but it now seems likely that he will be headed elsewhere. He may not have to move, as he has expressed interest in playing for Rex Ryan and the New York Jets. As the Jets continue to blur their base defense, whether 3-4 or 4-3, adding Osi Umenyiora would be a clear step towards a 4-3. It would also add an effective pass rusher to the front seven.
Osi Umenyiora is looking for a chance to start, and he's not going to get that with the New York Giants. With the New York Jets, Osi Umenyiora would be the premier pass rusher of the unit, joining Muhammad Wilkerson and Quinton Coples. It will be a matter of the Jets being able to free up enough money to make a run at Osi Umenyiora, but the interest is there:
"Rex Ryan, when I was coming out of college he was with Baltimore at the time and he came down to work me out at Troy, he came to Atlanta, just me and him,” Umenyiora told the Post. “We had a pretty good time out there so I’ve always enjoyed him as a coach and as a person. That might be a good fit."
Osi Umenyiora went on to add that he's still hopeful to remain with the Giants, but that doesn't look like it's going to happen. The Giants have some big names that are due to get paid and don't have a ton of cap room to work with. Of course, the Jets currently have no cap room to work with, but that will change when Bart Scott, Calvin pace and others get cut.
Osi Umenyiora had six sacks in limited playing time this season, but has posted double-digit sack totals three times in his career, as well as nine sacks in the 2011 season. The Jets are still trying to get to the quarterback more often, and with Muhammad Wilkerson and Quinton Coples only expected to get better, adding Osi Umenyiora to the mix could give them a lethal pass rush.
It will be interesting to see how it all shakes out. While trading Darrelle Revis doesn't open up money for this year, it does free up future money that can have an impact on this offseason if the Jets choose to structure contracts to take advantage of that. Whether John Idzik is prepared to do that is unknown, as that was the route of choice for so many of the signings under Mike Tannenbaum.
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