New York Giants: 15 best free agent acquisitions of all-time

New York Giants. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
New York Giants. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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Kareem McKenzie, New York Giants
Kareem McKenzie, New York Giants. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

31. . Offensive Tackle. 2005 - 2011. Kareem McKenzie. 5. player

  • Two-time Super Bowl champion (XLII, XLVI)
  • Started all 105 games he played for Giants
  • Called for zero holding penalties in 2008 and 2009
  • Started in 15 playoff games in his NFL career

When you sign as a free agent and become a two-time Super Bowl Champion, that by nature denotes your importance to the franchise. In his quest to rebuild the Giants, general manager Ernie Accorsi started his roster renovations along the offensive line. That paid both immediate and long-range dividends for the team.

For his part, Kareem McKenzie was plucked away from the New York Jets as the final offensive line piece that already included Shaun O’Hara, Rich Seubert, David Diehl and Chris Snee. McKenzie spent the first four seasons of his NFL career with Gang Green, and signed a seven-year, $37.75 million contract with Big Blue on March 3, 2005.

Per ESPN:

"“McKenzie said he chose the Giants in part because he grew up in New Jersey and will play in the same stadium that was his home with the Jets. He also said he was looking forward to playing with quarterback Eli Manning, the first overall pick in last year’s draft.”"

The former Penn State product finished the term of that contract with the G-Men and never played another NFL game. In the meantime, he played in 105 games with 105 starts for the Giants franchise.

During his seven-year Giants career, McKenzie missed only seven games, a testament to his durability. His name is etched on both the Super Bowl XLII and Super Bowl XLIV championship trophies. He remains one of the most overlooked free agent signings in team history.