Osi Umenyiora - Stephen Dunn
Osi Umenyiora seems to believe this will be his final game with the Giants, and expects many players to be shown the door along with him.
Thing is, after what has been a disappointing season for the 8-7 Giants Umenyiora expects there will be many other Giants shown the door just one year after hoisting a Super Bowl trophy.
"Where are they going to make the changes is the question. There's no individual, there's no aspect of the team this year that stood out. If you want to talk about the pass rush... Well maybe we didn't get 50 sacks like we did last year, but was the offense playing well? Was the special teams playing... Like where?" Umenyiora said. "There's nowhere that was up to the standards that we set last year. If they're going to be making changes, it has to be wholesale changes. Everybody has to leave. There has to be changes for everybody because nobody played above average this year."
Drafted in the second round in 2003, Umenyiora has spent his entire career with the Giants. The defensive end said recently that he wished he had handled some of his public contract squabbles differently, but that he's happy with what he's accomplished.
"I think most people want to finish out their career with the team that they started and I fall into that category. I would have loved to have finished my career here, but everybody is not so fortunate. Everybody is not a Michael [Strahan]. A lot of you were around when I got drafted. If somebody would have told you that when I got drafted, somebody who nobody knew about, that 10 years later I would still be here and had won a couple of Super Bowls and been to Pro Bowls and set records and all of that stuff, you would have laughed, I would have laughed," Umenyiora said.
"Everybody in there would have laughed and so I'm just happy with the things that I've done here and I'm happy with the things that I've accomplished here. I'm happy with the things that this team has done here and if it does, in fact, turn out to be my last game, then it's been a wonderful, wonderful ride and I'm just going to walk around in New York with my head held high because it's been a great accomplishment playing for this organization and being able to do some of the things that we accomplished here as a team."
Umenyiora said he was "A little frustrated, but definitely not angry" about the was this season has gone.
"Football is life. I think people like to differentiate football from life, but it is what it is. You're not going to win the Super Bowl every year," Umenyiora said. "All the teams who are going to the playoffs, hopefully we're one of those, but there's only one team who is going to win the Super Bowl. So for every other team it was a disappointing season for them. So luckily I've been here where we've won two championships and I'm going to hold my head high no matter what because of that and I'm happy about it."
The big question, as Umenyiora said, doesn't seem to be whether or not he is leaving the Giants. The real question is how many veteran players are going with him.
No matter what happens Sunday against the Eagles this promises to be a critical off-season filled with questions that don't have easy, or obvious, answers.