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NFL Trade Deadline 2012: Best, worst New York Giants' mid-season trades

The 2012 NFL trade deadline is today. The New York Giants rarely make moves at the deadline. Here, though, is a look at what might be the best and worst mid-season trades the team has ever made.

Ottis Anderson in the 1990 Super Bowl against the Buffalo Bills.
Ottis Anderson in the 1990 Super Bowl against the Buffalo Bills.
[Photo courtesy of New York Giants]

The NFL Trade Deadline is Thursday at 4 p.m. ET. The New York Giants, almost certainly, will be quiet at the deadline. The Giants very make deadline deals at what is generally a low-key deadline, anyway.

The Giants, however, have made a couple of significant mid-season trades in their history. One of those worked out really well. Another one didn't work out quite so well. Let's jump in our time machine, go back into Giants' history and look at two moves that could be considered the best and worst mid-season trades the Giants have ever made.

[Related: SB Nation NFL Trade Deadline coverage]

The Best

In October of 1986 the Giants acquired Ottis Anderson, a once-great running back for the St. Louis Cardinals, who now appeared to be a broken-down shell of the explosive, difference-making player he had once been. Anderson was acquired for a pair of late-round 1987 draft choices, and was considered little more than insurance for a Giants' team that featured Joe Morris, en route to a season during which he gained 1,516 yards rushing.

The Giants collected big-time on the Anderson insurance policy, but it took a while.

He was a bit player until 1989 when he took over as the featured back at age 32. He gained 1,023 yards on 325 carries, only 3.1 per carry. He added 784 yards in the 1990 season. His best, however, was his 102-yard, 21-carry performance that earned him the MVP award in the 1991 Super Bowl, won by the Giants over the Buffalo Bills.

It may have taken a few years to prove it, but this is probably the best in-season move the modern Giants have ever made.

The Worst

During the dark days of the 1970s the Giants made a myriad of mistakes as a franchise. Bad coaching hires. Bad draft choices. Bad trades.

One of the worst of those moves came in the middle of the 1974 season, when the desperate for a quarterback Giants traded a first-round draft choice to the Dallas Cowboys for Craig Morton. The Giants suffered along with Morton as their starter for two and a half years, going 7-25 with him as their starting quarterback.

That first-round pick the Giants gave up? Dallas used it to select Randy White, a nine-time Pro Bowler and seven-time All-Pro who was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1994. Had the Giants never made that trade there is, of course, no guarantee they would have been smart enough to select White with that draft pick. You can, however, dream.

The Giants finally traded the aging Morton to the Denver Broncos before the 1977 season.