The New York Giants have finally gotten into the player acquisition game this offseason, trading for Bengals linebacker Keith Rivers and signing free agents Sean Locklear (offensive lineman who was with the Redskins last year), and Antwuan Molden (former Patriots cornerback). The results? Uninspiring, at best.
Rivers was the best of the acquisitions and the move can best be described as "worth a shot." He was the ninth overall pick in the 2008 draft, which is a kinda-sorta shorthand way of saying he has some talent, or at least potential. But, he's never fulfilled that potential because of a string of injuries. When he's been able to stay off the injury list he's been reasonably productive, but never at the level teams would want from a high first-round pick. If he can stay healthy -- and that's a big "if" -- he ought to be at least decent in the Giants' system. If the injury pattern persists, at least the Giants gave up only the 32nd pick in the 5th round.
The Molden signing makes sense in a "I guess every team needs guys to fill out the roster" kind of way. Molden was a reserve for the Patriots -- one of the league's more feeble defending against the pass. And he could easily go by the nickname "Toast." He has the tools to be a decent corner and maybe with some tutoring from the Giants defensive coaches he can provide some depth. Maybe.
The most baffling acquisition is Locklear. He once was a regular starter for the Seahawks and wasn't bad. Those days are well behind him. He signed with Washington last year and could best be described as a turnstile. When starter Jammal Brown went down, Locklear took over at right tackle and was terrible. The Skins offensive line struggled mightily when he was on the field, and improved when Locklear was replaced with street free agent Tyler Polumbus. Giants fans should hope that Locklear need not take the field for their team this year.
In other Giants news, the peace with defensive end Osi Umenyiora apparently hasn't been a lasting one. This week, he refused to say whether he'd be at the team's facility when voluntary workouts begin Monday, and that he doesn't like being a backup. He indicated that while he wants a contract extension to stay with the Giants, he has thought about being traded. The Giants front office indicated they're open to an extension. They'd be smart to take their time and to keep things short -- speed rushers are usually near the end of their on-the-field usefulness when they approach their 30th birthday.
None of these roster moves will make much difference next season. Rivers could help some if he stays healthy. If Molden and Locklear are required to play a significant number of snaps, the Giants will be in trouble.