The Jeremy Shockey headache now belongs to Sean Payton, Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints.
My take on Monday's trade of Shockey to the Saints for 2nd and 5th-round draft choices? Simple. This was the best outcome for everyone.
It's the best outcome for the Giants. Shockey is a great talent, but his histrionics, his obvious unhappiness and his dropped passes hurt the Giants as much as his talent could occasionally help them. Shockey was once my favorite Giant, but we all know the Giants can win without him. They have talented players who can handle tight end, and now they get to move on without the distraction Shockey would have caused.
It's the best outcome for Shockey. The emotional tight end was obviously stung by the Giants winning the Super Bowl without him, never quite accepting that he wasn't as important as he thought. He was also never going to be happy with his somewhat secondary role in the offense. Now, he gets to go to a place where they love to throw, have a great quarterback and have a coach who was with the Giants when Shockey was at his best.
It's the best outcome for the Saints. They get a talented, if enigmatic, tight end with tons of talent and a very large chip on his shoulder. It shouldn't surprise anybody if Shockey hits the field with a vengeance and has the best season of his career in 2008.
Here is what Giants co-owner John Mara had to say about the trade.
"I had a couple of long conversations with Jeremy this spring and summer,'' Mara said. "From those conversations, it was apparent to me that a fresh start was the best thing for us and for Jeremy."
You can make a compelling argument that the Giants would have been better off keeping Shockey. I know many fans, and media members, feel that way.
I happen to agree with the view espoused by SI.com's Michael Lombardi.
The one thing the 2007 season taught us is the Giants can win without Shockey in their offense. And with this trade, the Giants play into their strength, which is being very solid at drafting players. Acquiring the second-round pick -- even though it likely will be late in the second -- will enable the Giants to add more youth and talent to their team. When you draft well, then adding more picks is always a smart idea.
There is really no pressure at all on starting tight end Kevin Boss. He is not a main cog in the offense, so he can just go about doing his job, which is to block and catch the ball when thrown in his direction. The Giants needed some complimentary players for their offense, ones who accept their role and do the dirty work. Boss did all those things very well last year and will improve even more this season.
The Giants did the smart thing being patient with this trade. They held firm and got their price. Whether the Giants make a return visit to the Super Bowl has little to do with this trade. With the smell of success all around the Giants this camp, they can look to the future and not have to worry as much about proving themselves this year.
Boss, Darcy Johnson and Michael Matthews will do a fine job handling the tight end duties this season.
The draft choices the Giants accumulated will help General Manager Jerry Reese continue what he has started, building a team that is set up for a long run success in the NFC.
It would have been nice if Shockey could have been part of that. It wasn't to be, however, and I can't spend time feeling badly about it. Shockey didn't really leave the Giants with a choice.