Osi might be leaving Big Blue

December, 30, 2012
12/30/12
6:57
PM ET
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Osi Umenyiora may have played his last game as a New York Giant.

The two-time All-Pro defensive end, who has spent all 10 of his NFL seasons with Big Blue, is looking for a new contract. And with the Giants' depth at his position, and needs at other spots, it's likely Umenyiora will be wearing a different uniform in 2013.

"No, not at all," said Umenyiora, when asked if he was emotional following Sunday's 42-7 victory over the Eagles. "It’s actually a great feeling, knowing that I still have some good football left in me."

"If it’s here it’s here, I hope it is," Umenyiora added, of his future. "But if it’s not, then I’ll just take my talents elsewhere, and I’m just happy to have played here, played for this great city, this great organization, this great team."

The Giants drafted Umenyiora, 31, in the second round back in 2003, out of Troy University. He quickly blossomed into a star, leading the NFC in sacks with 14.5 in 2005.

He also posted double-digit sack totals in 2007 (13) and 2010 (11.5), and had 10 forced fumbles in 2010 as well.

But with the emergence of Jason Pierre-Paul the past two years, playing opposite Justin Tuck, Umenyiora was relegated to a situational pass-rusher role at times. He had nine sacks in 2011, and only six in 2012.

To be fair, all of the Giants' pass rushers were underwhelming this past season. A year after collecting 48 sacks -- tied for third-best in the NFL -- the Giants had just 33 in 2012, ranking them in the bottom half of the league.

That's just one of many reasons why the Giants failed to qualify for the playoffs, a year after winning the Super Bowl.

Umenyiora was not dejected after the game, however.

"I’m happy man," he said, when asked how he was feeling. "We got a win. We haven’t played well and we finally came together and we played the way we’re supposed to as a team. It was an outstanding victory for the Giants."

As for not making the playoffs?

"It’s unfortunate," Umenyiora said. "You can’t go to the playoffs every year. We were the champions last year. This year we weren’t able to back that up, but we still ended it on a positive note."

And he wasn't interested in looking back at the Giants' terrible performances the previous two weeks, and trying to figure out what happened. "There’s no point in doing that," he said. "It wasn’t there (the past two weeks). Today, it was. We gave the people of New York something to look forward to next year."

The question is, will he still be around?
Kieran Darcy is an ESPNNewYork.com staff writer. He joined ESPN in August 2000 after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, where he played four years of JV basketball.
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