Over at SB Nation's New York Jets blog, Gang Green Nation, they spent Tuesday discussing the idea of swapping safety Kerry Rhodes to our New York Giants for Osi Umenyiora. Mind you this is just water-cooler chit-chat and not something that is really being discussed by the two teams. That said, I figured I would put in my $.02.
So, here it is.
If Jets General Manager Mike Tannenbaum was actually silly enough to make this offer to his Giants counterpart, Jerry Reese, JR should say 'yes' before Tannenbaum even finishes the sentence. Then send out an announcement of the trade within two minutes and don't let Tannenbaum take it back.
This trade would be a brilliant one for the Giants. And a stupid, head-scratching one for the Jets. Gang Green Nation is running a poll on the trade and, 65% of Jets fans who have voted said 'yes' to making the deal. That is typical, in my mind, of the misunderstanding fans who don't see Umenyiora play every week have regarding his current ability level.
Let's look at this from the Jets' perspective. They play a 3-4 as their base defense, though Gang Green states that they "do use a lot of 4-3 looks." Osi is a pass-rushing 4-3 end who is weak against the run. No way he holds up as a 3-4 end. And highly unlikely he can be effective standing up on the outside as a 3-4 linebacker -- he just doesn't have any coverage skills. So, he is a total misfit for what the Jets do -- even if they are in need of a pass-rusher.
Now the Giants' perspective. Gang Green says both Umenyiora and Rhodes are "coming off disappointing years." In Umenyiora's case, we know that to be true. In Rhodes' case, I'm not so sure about that. Admittedly I don't watch a lot of Jets' games and I'm no expert when it comes to judging Rhodes' play, so I am just turning to the numbers to form an opinion.
Rhodes, a five-year veteran, made a career-low 64 tackles this season. You wonder, though, if that is because the Jets front seven was so solid running backs did not often get to Rhodes' level of the defense. Against the pass Rhodes had three interceptions and 13 passes defensed. Those numbers look awfully good compared to the work by the Giants safety. The Giants had one interception from a safety not named Kenny Phillips all season.
You guys know I love to reference Pro Football Focus, especially in looking at defensive players. Well, PFF loves Rhodes. For the past three seasons PFF has graded the Jets safety as one of the best five in the league. In 2009, Rhodes' score of +12.6 was second only to Baltimore's incredible Ed Reed. In 2008, Rhodes graded third behind Philly's Quintin Mikell and Pittsburgh's Troy Polamalu.
So, I don't know how Rhodes' season was 'disappointing.' I do know that if this offer was really made, I would 'yes.' As fast as possible.