New York Giants: Is Antrel Rolle Joining Kenny Phillips or Replacing Him?

Pro Football NYCSenior Writer IMarch 6, 2010

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 02: Kenny Phillips #21 of the New York Giants in action against the Dallas Cowboys during their game on November 2, 2008 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

Julius Peppers went to Chicago yesterday and came away $91 million richer.  Karlos Dansby, who was supposed to be courted by a slew of teams, was only offered a contract by the Miami Dolphins.  He took it.

And Antrel Rolle, a safety coming off of a Pro Bowl year, was made the richest at his position by the New York Giants.

Perhaps the exodus of major players in Arizona helped Rolle's decision to take the Giants' money a bit easier.  It was thought that Rolle's agent may try to take a Giant offer and leverage it vs others, drawing out the process, but that never materialized.

Rolle fills a gaping hole in the Giants' secondary. Unfortunately, it's at free safety—the position where Kenny Phillips has been penciled in.  What will the Giants do?  Or is there something we don't know about Phillips' future?

The Giants and Kenny Phillips have both assured the public that Phillips' knee rehab is on schedule, yet they went out yesterday and paid Antrel Rolle $37 million to play Phillips' position. For a team that claimed they were going to double-count their chips before every move, this quick strike to secure a free safety seems dubious.

The Giants' made Kenny Phillips their first round selection in 2008 because he had the same attributes as another University of Miami safety—the late Sean Taylor.  Rolle is also a former Hurricane.  In fact, when Taylor left for the NFL in 2004, Rolle took his slot in Miami and became a consensus All-American.

The signing of Rolle certainly helps the Giants at safety. But is he Phillips' new partner or his replacement?

Let's hope it's the former. Does this also mean that they are not expecting Kenny Phillips to fulfill his promise? Will they take Taylor Mays or Earl Thomas if either player falls to them in the draft?  We shall see....

On a side note, the Dolphins released former Giant safety Gibril Wilson yesterday.  I wonder if the Giants would consider bringing him back...?  Are the Giants still looking for inside LB help? And if so, who might be on their radar now that Dansby and Gary Brackett are no longer possibilities?

The Eagles released LB Will Witherspoon yesterday.  He's still got some mojo left. He may be worth a look.  Then there are the RFAs.  Kirk Morrison of Oakland and Cleveland's D'Qwell Jackson have been mentioned.

The opinion of this writer, that is if the Giants want a real MLB, they send an offer sheet to Houston's DeMeco Ryans.  Only 25, Ryans is the league's next big superstar at the position.  He was recently tendered at the highest level (a first and third round pick) by the Texans and is going to be offered a long term deal.

Take a shot, Jerry Reese. You have our permission.  As Clint Eastwood said in The Outlaw Josey Wales ....Are you goin to pull those pistols or just stand there whistlin' dixie...?