The Osi saga took a little bit of a bizarre turn last night, however I think it is all a means to an end, and in the Giants favor. It will be a way for all to save face and get back to the business of football.
According to Osi’s agent, Tony Agnone, the Giants offered the option of getting a second opinion on Osi’s knee. Thus giving the disgruntled defensive an out, and he took it. Here’s the scenario I think will play out in the next few days. The Giants and their world class medical staff have found nothing wrong with Osi’s knee that would prevent him from practicing, however Osi says it’s hurt. They certainly can’t risk his health and say to the rest of the team that they don’t believe he is really hurting. The contract talks, that included incentives, have been greeted with more demands from Osi. The idea of the Giants wiping away the last year of his contract was ludicrous. Osi will visit Atlanta and get a clean bill of health. He will then come home and announce that he now feels “confident” enough in the knee to begin practicing. The Giants will announce how happy they are that he his completely healthy and they will welcome him back. While some contract additions in incentives may still be forthcoming, the game will have been played, and Osi will be back in camp. He will of course be booed wildly opening night when he takes the field, and this will add to his confusion of why he is always the bad guy.
Here are some things to remember about this situation, and how the Giants quietly, but effectively play hard ball. Osi really had no cards to play in this whole drama. He basically had two of the 5 years of his current contract paid while he was not playing or not playing well at all. If he thought the Giants would choose to add another free year by putting him on the PUP or retired list, he was sadly mistaken. Also the new CBA has lots of new fines for missing camp, practices, pre-season games, and regular season games. The giveback the owners got from the union in return for less OTA’s, less camp time, and less practice time was that they would help guarantee the players would show. Unless you are in your walk year, and you are a franchise player, holdouts are a thing of the past. The next mis-step were the trade rumors. The Giants allowed Osi to seek a trade for a first round pick. After hearing that his agent had contacted 21 teams without a taker, a report surfaced that Baltimore was willing to give a third round pick. The next morning on ESPN’s Colin Cowherd Show it was announced by a Giants beat writer that according to his “source” the price was going to drop to a second round pick. False. The Giants knew right then that they had won the battle. Offer terminated, no trade. Osi was left with the last ditch effort to become a distraction and claim he was now injured. Too late.
This was a masterful job by management to see the entire scenario and where it could lead if handled properly. Osi will be back, and I hope he has something to prove!