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Osi Umenyiora Says He'd Be 'Cool' With Bench Role


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ALBANY, N.Y. -- Osi Umenyiora said Wednesday he would be "cool" with coming off the bench if Mathias Kiwanuka wins the defensive end job.

 

Umenyiora still wants to start and he is battling pain in his hip to play this season -- a year he calls his most important. But he doesn't want to be selfish and said he'll do whatever's necessary to help the Giants rebound from an 8-8 season.

 

"I've been very selfish in the past with my demands and some of the things that I wanted," said Umenyiora, talking for the first time in training camp. "I don't really feel that way anymore right now. There's enough playing time for everybody."

 

Umenyiora said there will be enough playing time to go around for all the Giants' talented defensive ends.

 

"If I'm coming off the bench I'm going to be the best bench player ever," Umenyiora said. "[The team] wants to win. It's not a personal vendetta against me or anything I thought in the past. Everybody needs to be a little more unselfish."

 

Umenyiora had said in the past that he would consider retiring if he didn't start. He also said the team would start the best players and if he was one of the best players and didn't start, there could be issues. But he changed his tune Wednesday.

 

Umenyiora also said he won't point to his hip injury as an excuse if he doesn't perform at a top level. He said surgery is a possibility after the season.

 

The defensive end said surgery might eventually be necessary to prolong his career. Umenyiora suffered a torn hip flexor in 2006 and his lingering hip pain is from that injury. He has been able to manage the pain, which flares up from time to time. He also said he didn't want to go under the knife again after having knee surgery a few seasons ago.

 

"This season is more important to me than any injury," he said. "When I look around all I see is negativity, people saying I can't do this.

 

"I still feel I'm an exceptional player. We have an exceptional team. This season is probably the most important year of my life."

 

Umenyiora said best-case scenario is that he plays four more seasons. He said there are no guarantees what would've happened if he had surgery on his hip in the offseason.

 

"I'm in a very good mental mind place right now," Umenyiora said. "I feel like I have the mental willpower to overcome [hip pain]."

 

http://sports.espn.go.com/new-york/nfl/news/story?id=5436994

 

 

 

glad hes got the right attitude goin and i hope he wins the starting job.

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Maybe he realized he isnt the best DE to ever grace the NY Giants, I guess us drafting JPP showed him were not afraid to move on if he kept acting childish.

 

I will admit he has said and done the right things after going on his "If I get benched I want a trade" attitude, maybe he's come around to the idea that it's not just about him.

 

Nice to see you back on the teams side Osi.

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You guys are a tough crowd. I love Osi. He was great for awhile and was the starter, he had every right to question the move....initially. But now he's being humble and bein a team player. Im proud of him. Go Osi.

 

I agree with you. I think the whole atmosphere last year was just bad.... I like Osi... he has a different personality in that he bitches about stuff instead of keepin them bottled in... it's not right or wrong.. just different.

 

I like the guy an look forward to him and the entire team have a great season.

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You guys are a tough crowd. I love Osi. He was great for awhile and was the starter, he had every right to question the move....initially. But now he's being humble and bein a team player. Im proud of him. Go Osi.

 

PRIVATELY he had every right to question the move. But the dumbass went public.

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PRIVATELY he had every right to question the move. But the dumbass went public.

 

Was he a "dumbass" when he was repeatedly sacking Donovan? lol......its hard to stay private when the media is constantly in your face and "inside sources" are always givin information.

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Was he a "dumbass" when he was repeatedly sacking Donovan? lol......its hard to stay private when the media is constantly in your face and "inside sources" are always givin information.

 

Never said he wasn't a good football player. But he messed up. He's realized it too...that's the reason we're here.

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