Pro Bowl defensive end Michael Strahan not only was absent on Friday, when the Giants had to report to Albany for training camp, but he’s contemplating retirement and might have played his last game for Big Blue.
“I thought it was a little bit of late notice, but that’s how the National Football League works sometimes,” GM Jerry Reese said. “I just told him if he’s ready to retire that we wish him Godspeed.”
Last night, Strahan’s agent, Tony Agnone, called Reese at 7 and Strahan called Tom Coughlin at 11:30 – both to say that Strahan was contemplating retirement.
“Obviously I’m disappointed that he’s not here,” Coughlin said. “He’s a very important part of our team.”
As of 2 p.m., no one with the Giants had been able to reach Strahan, who was flying east, according to a Star-Ledger report.
What remains to be seen is whether or not Strahan is using the retirement talk as a ploy to get more money out of New York. Rumors started flying that Strahan would hold out from training camp because he was unhappy with his current deal. Reese said that Strahan’s contract did not come up during their talk.
“Maybe he’s just tired and he wants to retire,” Reese said.
Strahan, a seven-time Pro Bowler, is tied atop New York’s career list with 132.5 sacks and has recorded 822 tackles during his 14-year career.
Reese said the Giants have a short list of players, including Simeon Rice, the club would look to bring in to replace Strahan and also didn’t rule out the return of Mathias Kiwanuka to defensive end.
Reese stated that if Strahan actually were to hang up the spikes, the Giants would miss him dearly.
“It’s hard to replace guys that are going to be in the Hall of Fame,” he said. “Obviously it’s a big void for us. But we don’t know anything yet.”
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