The Kenny Golladay watch continued Friday, as the Giants’ fan base waited anxiously to hear if the big-play wide receiver was coming to their team. And, more precisely, waiting to see if the Giants,
The Kenny Golladay watch continued Friday, as the Giants’ fan base waited anxiously to hear if the big-play wide receiver was coming to their team. And, more precisely, waiting to see if the Giants, after meeting with Golladay, were ready to sign off on bringing him aboard.
Golladay arrived at the Giants’ facility Thursday afternoon for a visit that included dinner. That visit extended into Friday evening, with Golladay meeting head coach Joe Judge, members of the offensive staff and also general manager Dave Gettleman. The Giants wanted to get Golladay in their building, check him out physically and also figure out if he would be a culture fit for a franchise that, with Judge calling the shots, is not blinded by talent alone.
The Giants needed to get a medical check on Golladay, who played in just five games in 2020, missing two games with a hamstring issue and nine other games with a hip flexor injury. The Giants sent Golladay to the Hospital for Special Surgery to get checked out on Friday.
The visit ended with Golladay leaving the facility Friday in the early evening, but he remained in the area overnight. The visit went well, according to a source, with the Giants apparently satisfied by what they heard from Golladay. Contract negotiations were underway and the Giants seemed confident an agreement could be reached.
It is not Golladay, the player, who gives the Giants pause here. They know he would instantly become the physical presence lacking in their passing game. They understand Golladay running down the field and hauling in passes from Daniel Jones would change the complexion of their attack. They also realize he is not the second coming of Randy Moss. Still, the Giants are also quite aware of the psychic jolt of energy a Golladay signing would inject into their fan base, and, no doubt, into those who roam the halls and work in the building where the Giants work and practice.
The Giants insisted on an in-person visit with Golladay, 27, because they wanted to get answers to questions they had about him.
The Giants needed to investigate what went down last season, when Golladay hurt his hip in a Nov. 1 loss to the Colts. He did not play again, but was not put on injured reserve, as the Lions held out hope for his return. There was speculation Golladay, looking for a new contract, was not rushing back onto the field.
Darrell Bevell, the Lions’ interim head coach, last season said that claim was unwarranted. Asked if Golladay was making a business decision by not playing, Bevell told reporters in Detroit: “I can be clear that he is not.’’
A source told The Post that Golladay, during the 2020 season, turned down what was believed to be a long-term extension with the Lions for $18 million a year. Other top receivers Amari Cooper, Keenan Allen and DeAndre Hopkins then all signed new deals averaging at least $20 million per year. A source said Golladay was eyeing that annual compensation. He is not going to get that in free agency and probably is not going to come close.
Golladay staged a media boycott last season that lasted longer than a month. In October, he posted a picture on Instagram with the caption “This s–t gone cost you!’’ It was believed that was referring to the Lions not anteing up with a new contract. Not long after that, he “liked’’ an Instagram post by the NFL stating Detroit head coach Matt Patricia had been fired.
The Giants needed to hear what went down. Remember, Judge told Golden Tate to stay home on a road trip to Washington for what Judge deemed selfish acts by the receiver. That Tate’s wife complained about his usage on social media did not help. Tate was released this offseason.
Late last season, Golladay broke his media silence and said: “I mean, everybody knows what I’m capable of doing. I wasn’t worried about like, ‘I need to play, man. I got to show the people.’ People know who Kenny Golladay is and I was really trying to make sure my body was right. I don’t want to go out there and put bad stuff on tape.’’
Judge has a relationship with Patricia from their years coaching together on Bill Belichick’s Patriots staff. Judge can reach out (and no doubt has) to Patricia about Golladay. Belichick also has Patricia as a resource. That the Giants and Patriots, two teams that went into free agency looking for receivers, did not jump at the chance to sign Golladay is telling. That Golladay, considered by many the top receiver on the market, was not an early signing by anyone in the league is also telling.
The Giants this offseason added Kyle O’Brien to their personnel department and he is another source for Golladay information. O’Brien spent the past five seasons with the Lions and was there in 2017 when Golladay was selected out of Northern Illinois in the third round of the NFL draft.
This story originally appeared on: NyPost - Author:Paul Schwartz