Shutdown Corner - NFL

When Plaxico Burress was arrested in November after accidentally shooting himself with a concealed weapon, it seemed inevitable that he had played his last game in a New York Giants uniform. But, since then, the inevitability faded. The Giants offense was stagnant after Plaxico was suspended for the end of the 2008 season and with it becoming increasingly likely that Burress will take a plea deal that may not include jail time, there was a belief that the team would welcome him back this summer. Apparently not.

The New York Giants cut their star wideout this afternoon in a move that would have been surprising had it not been so expected months ago. It can't be labeled as a stunning move because, come on, the guy is facing jail time for accidentally shooting himself. But recently, all signs suggested that Burress would be back with the Giants.

In a statement, New York general manager Jerry Reese said:

"I am an optimist, and I believe most situations can be worked out. We hung in there as long as we could in hopes that there could be a resolution to this situation other than the decision we made today to release Plaxico. It wasn't to be, so now we have to move on."

Interesting. There's some read-between-the-lines stuff going on there, I think. The second sentence of that excerpt, coupled with the fact that the Giants dumped this news late on a Friday afternoon, suggests that there may be more to this than a change of heart.

The big question now is, where will Plaxico be in 2009? Prison is still a very real possibility, and so is an NFL suspension (for violating the league's conduct penalty). Also up in the air: whether or not a team will sign Plaxico before his legal woes are worked out. Either way, the Plaxico Burress saga just got a lot more compelling. 

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