Canty still here and in Giants' plans
Chris Canty is still here.
The Cowboys defensive end, who began his visit with the New York Giants last night and was at dinner with the coaches when they signed DT Rocky Bernard, decided to stay the night and will meet again with Giants officials today. Despite the fact that he appears to be out of the team’s price range and that the Giants probably don’t need a fourth defensive tackle, signing him is apparently still part of their plans.
“Chris is still with Giants (and) they remain steadfast that they would like to sign him, in addition to Bernard,” agent Brad Blank said in an email this morning. “We’ll see.”
The 27-year-old Canty (6-7, 304) — a Bronx native who played end in the Cowboys’ 3-4 defense and would presumably move to tackle in the Giants’ 4-3 — would seem to be an expensive luxury for the Giants. According to one NFL source, he’s seeking a deal worth $8 million per season and he reportedly had a promise of $18 million in guaranteed money from the Redskins on the first day of free agency before they signed DT Albert Haynesworth instead.
That would be a lot for a player who would have to split time in a rotation with the newly signed Bernard and incumbent starters Barry Cofield and Fred Robbins. And since on passing downs the Giants presumably were going to move DE Justin Tuck inside to tackle (allowing Mathias Kiwanuka and Osi Umenyiora to play at end), the playing time to split up among the four tackles would be something less.
It’s a little hard to believe the Giants would pay what figures to be a lot of money to add a seventh defensive lineman to a crowded rotation … Unless, of course, the knee injuries to either DT Barry Cofield or DT Fred Robbins are worse than we know and one of them is in danger of not playing next year. … Or unless, after knee surgery and an injury plagued season, the Giants are considering cutting the 32-year-old Robbins. Otherwise, it’s hard to see the value in spending that kind of money for a player whose playing time would be severely limited.
However, the Giants don’t waste time and resources, so they’re not keeping Canty here for nothing. And they surely know what one NFL source told me: That one and possibly two teams have already let Canty know they’ll meet his price. The Giants aren’t believed to be willing to go higher than $5-6 million per season per Canty, and that likely won’t be enough.
Canty still has plans to fly to Seattle tonight for a meeting tomorrow. The Green Bay Packers, a source said, have been very aggressive in trying to get him to stop by for a visit. He’s also already put visits to San Francisco and Tennessee on hold, so he certainly could visit those teams, too.
For the moment, though, he’s in the Giants’ hands and apparently they’re trying to convince him to sign here.
Stay tuned to see how this incredibly interesting situation unfolds throughout the day.
Much to my surprise, it appears S James Butler has left St. Louis without signing a deal with the new team of ex-Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo and is now on his way to Cleveland to meet with ex-Jets coach Eric Mangini.
However, the St. Louis Rams haven’t given up on signing Butler yet.
“He went back to Atlanta this morning,” Rams GM Billy Devaney said yesterday. “We’re still talking. We’re going to try to get something done. We’re a little bit apart right now with him contract-wise. I think he wouldn’t mind being here. We’d certainly like to have him here, so now we’re just going to see if we can make that happen.”
RB Derrick Ward was apparently in Philadelphia yesterday, despite reports that he was in Cincinnati. (I’m starting to feel like I’m playing “Where’s Waldo?” with Ward). Apparently he’s been to both cities and left without a deal and is now on his way to Denver.
According to that report out of Denver, Ward is looking for a deal “similar to the six-year, $34.5 million contract Michael Turner received from Atlanta last season” (a deal which included $15 million guaranteed, by the way). That’s only slightly less crazy than what I told you yesterday, that he was looking for a deal similar to the four-year, $25 million deal (with $13 million guaranteed) the Giants gave Brandon Jacobs.
Speaking of Jacobs, here’s the breakdown of the four-year, $25 million contract he signed earlier this week:
According to figures obtained from the NFL Players a.ssociation, the deal includes $7.85 million in signing and roster bonuses paid somewhere in the first two years of the deal. All of that is guaranteed, as is his $3.5 million salary in 2009 and nearly half of his $3.65 million salary in 2010.
Jacobs is also due salaries of $4.65 million in 2011 and $4.9 million in 2012.
And before you ask, it’s impossible to know his cap number in each of those seasons until more details are available. According to an NFL source, his cap number for 2009 will be $5.5 million. It would appear, based on those numbers, that it will about the same in 2010 and jump to between $6.5 million and $7 million in 2011 and 2012. But again, that’s unofficial, pending more details.
T.J. Houshmandzadeh, whose market is much drier than anticipated, is now taking shots at the “dummies on TV” who think that he’s overestimated his value to the rest of the NFL (thankfully I’m just a dummy in the newspaper and on the internet, so I avoided his wrath).
For what it’s worth, Houshmandzadeh — who still insists he’ll be signed by tonight — has visited Seattle and Minnesota and his old team in Cincinnati wants to retain him. Nobody else seems to want him, including the Giants and Eagles whom he identified as two teams he’d like to play for.
Meanwhile, I still think there’s a chance he’ll end up sliding through someone’s back door later in free agency at a bargain price, just like Plaxico Burress did with the Giants in 2005. But I don’t know, maybe that theory is just dumb.