As free agency approaches rapidly, let’s talk about one more name to add into the mix as option for the G-men to consider at middle linebacker: Raiders’ inside linebacker Kirk Morrison. News has emerged that the Raiders tendered Morrison with an “original pick tender,” which is a fancy way of saying, “We are just not that into you, Kirk.” For teams interested in Morrison, he can be had for a 3rd round pick (Morrison was originally a 3rd round pick out of powerhouse San Diego State in 2005).
Now, I don’t think Jerry Reese is going to be very forthcoming with a 3rd round pick in this year’s draft, but I would propose trading Sinorice Moss (Al Davis loves speed regardless of production) and perhaps a 5th round pick in this year’s draft; otherwise, throw Al Davis a 4th round pick in next year’s draft and see if he bites.
Morrison has led the Raiders in tackles every year since being drafted and has started every game since coming into the league. Better yet, Morrison is versatile; he would be a big upgrade in the middle of the Giants defense and he also has the athleticism to play the weakside (nice insurance policy for Michael Boley) and strong enough to play the strong side (in case Clint Sintim is not ready for prime-time). Jerry Reese has made it a point to emphasize competition in 2010 and bringing in a high character, high motor guy like Morrison can only help the G-men return to form on the defensive side of the ball.
From the looks of it, Al Davis blames Morrison for the Raiders woeful run defense (Morrison is also being blamed for the selection of Darius Heyward-Bey as the 7th pick in he 2009 draft); the Raiders were 29th against the run in 2009, giving up a horrid 4.5 yards per carry which is actually an improvement from the 2008 season in which they gave up 4.7 yard per carry and ranked 31st against the run. But, stats are mis-leading a bit and its probably not fair to make Morrison the scapegoat as the Raiders are not exactly known for having stud defensive tackles or stout defensive ends against the run.
With the probability that Gary Brackett resigns in Indy and with the anticipated bidding war for Karlos Dansby (Richie Rich, i.e., Daniel Snyder is building up for yet another monster free agent run), Morrison is a guy that won’t cost too much to obtain and can have a big impact for the Giants in 2010. Guys like Morrison in the prime of their careers do not come available often at this price tag, Jerry Reese has to at least make the call to Al Davis and try to make a deal here. Thoughts?