Jerry Reese let Chase Blackburn and Michael Boley go last offseason, but now he regrets it. His current trade for Jon Beason proves it too.
In some ways it was a very New York Giants move. The Giants let two players who wanted more money go because both were at positions that are not considered as important as others. In the modern NFL linebackers simply are not as valuable as other positions. Obviously some may take exception with that claim, but at the very least GMs have been paying linebackers lower salaries relative to other positions for almost a decade now. Jerry Reese seemed to have a grasp on what was needed, giving Victor Cruz and Will Beatty (a prized left tackle) deals. In some ways it was very smart. Finding left tackles and players of Cruz’s caliber is difficult. Linebackers are often players who come out of nowhere, so there was a good chance the Giants could blindly find one.
Then Reese made his mistake. In his quest to draft the best player available (an old adage of his), he failed to take a linebacker in the draft. That left the cupboard clean and the Giants with little talent. Reese scrambled to pick up Dan Connor, who was playable, but certainly not a top talent. He was fine until he got hurt and the Giants were once again playing special teams guys on defense.
So Reese did what he had to by trading for another linebacker. Beason was his choice and it was not necessarily a bad one, but it does show an admission of a mistake. How? Well the reason Beason was available was because he was beat out of his starting spot by none other than Chase Blackburn. Blackburn has established himself to be better than Beason, yet the Giants will pay Beason more and give up a draft pick to get him when they could have had Blackburn before the season. Reese screwed up and now has to take the second best thing to Blackburn at a higher price because of it.
This move by Reese is actually a good one. In fact a GM who can realize a sunk cost is useful, and for all the mistakes Reese made this year, most of his moves are good ones. Giants fans have often gotten frustrated with him, but this man has two Super Bowl rings and has not fielded a losing team since 2004. That is incredible. But even top GMs make bad calls, and this trade illustrates one of his worst this season.