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Jacobs speaks about the season and his contract


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January 29, 2009


Jacobs: 'If I come back, I want Plax'

Brandon Jacobs wants to come back to the Giants. But he wants Plaxico Burress back in blue with him, too.


The big, free-agent-to-be running back endorsed that package deal down here in Tampa today, when he promised that his friend, Burress, is a changed man. He also insisted that the Giants should give him a second chance.


“Oh, no question,” Jacobs said. “If I’m here, I need 17 back on that roster.


Jacobs said he has talked to Burress frequently and texts him every other day. He said Burress is a “different guy” since he shot himself back in November and ended up with season-ending suspension. Burress is also facing 3 ½-15 years in prison for carrying an unlicensed firearm in Manhattan, and a probable suspension from the NFL, too.


“He knows what happened to him,” Jacobs said. “He knows he’s, No. 1, lucky to be living today, for how close he came. He realizes that and he realizes the golden opportunity he’s got in front of him to be able to take care of his wife and his kid. I talk to Plax every other day. We text back and forth. He’s still Plax. He’s still the same person. But he’s got a different swagger about himself.


“I think he’s changed. You won’t ever hear anything from Plaxico as far as any kind of trouble with ‘team’. It’s all done. He’s finished. He’ll really be a different person.”


And there’s absolutely no doubt in Jacobs mind that the Giants need him. The Giants were 11-1 when Burress was suspended, and then they lost four of their last five games, including a season-ending loss at home to Philadelphia in the divisional round of the playoffs.


“If we had Plax on our team, we go 15-1 and we win the Super Bowl,” Jacobs said. “And I’m not afraid to say that and I’ll say it to anybody on any team. We had a different identity with him and we didn’t have enough time to change our identity to be effective at what we wanted to do.”


Despite that, Jacobs said he’s not angry with Burress for, essentially, ruining the Giants’ season.


“You can’t judge him for what happened because nobody really knows what goes on out in the street,” Jacobs said. “A lot of people don’t really know anything about what happened or how targeted we are. I’m not going to blame him from protecting himself. The guy is not a criminal. He shot himself. He didn’t shoot no one else and I think we should get off his case. And I think anybody in that situation should get off and be able to continue his career.”



Jacobs said he has “no idea what’s going on” with talks on a new contract, but he said he’s “confident” that he and the Giants will reach an agreement before he becomes a free agent on Feb. 27.


“I really want to be back,” he said. “I’d be fairly upset and angry if I’m not back, because that’s where I want to be. That’s the team I want to play on. … I have no idea what’s going on there (but) I’m confident. When you know it’s something that you want, you just put it on the line and come out and get it done.”


According to a source familiar with the situation, there have been no substantive talks between Jacobs and his agents, though they have had some conversations and both have an idea where they stand. Jacobs has told several people he’s looking for a deal similar to the seven-year, $45 million pact the Dallas Cowboys gave running back Marion Barber that included $16 million in guarantees.


At the moment, it does not appear the Giants are willing to go quite that high. It’s not clear how much they’re offering, but one source said their current plan is to offer considerably less. Their offer is also likely to be incentive-laden since they’re concerned over how injury prone Jacobs is.


There is also a slim possibility that the Giants could slap either the “franchise” or “transition” tag on Jacobs. But the Giants haven’t used either since 1996, and it would clearly cause some hard feelings with Jacobs if they did it now.


“I would be angry,” he said. “It would probably cause some problems. But it’s nothing that we couldn’t deal with.


Under the franchise tag, Jacobs would be guaranteed $6.621 million in 2009 - the average of the salaries of the five highest-paid running backs in the NFL last season. He could then solicit offers from other teams, but the Giants would have a right to match and would get two first-round picks as compensation if they didn’t.


Under the transition tag, Jacobs would be guaranteed $5.925 million in 2009 - the average of the salaries of the 10 highest-paid running backs in the NFL last season. The Giants would still have the right to match any offer Jacobs receives, but they’d be due no compensation if they didn’t.


Jacobs doesn’t anticipate either of those happening.


“I don’t think the Giants would put that high of a number against the cap,” he said. “I don’t anticipate that at all. I’m confident something will get done.”


The Giants, by the way, haven’t used either tag in more in than a decade. The last time they used the “transition tag” was in 1996, when they slapped it on RB Rodney Hampton. They also “transitioned” TE Howard Cross in 1994 and LB Carl Banks in 1993.


They’ve only used the “franchise tag” once in their history - - in 1993, on LT Jumbo Elliott.


By Ralph Vacchiano on January 29, 2009 12:46 PM



Jeesh you don't hear Eli saying he would take less money to have Jacobs back :rolleyes:

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