June 6th, 2011
Plaxico Burress was one of the stars to propel the New York Giants to their last super bowl win in Super Bowl XLII in 2008. After the Championship, he was charged of two felony convictions for possession of a weapon in a nightclub. He served 20 months in jail and was released early Monday June 6th. Plaxico’s agent says he is physically and mentally ready to play in the NFL. Plaxico has a reputation for being a bit undisciplined, but still has a chance of contributing to an NFL team and making an impact on any roster. Michael Vick, who was recently released from jail, commented today on his respect for Plaxico and wished him the best. The Eagles are in need of a third wide receiver and Plaxico would be a great addition since it would open up the secondary for Vick to be more lethal with his legs on the field. Plaxico’s time with the Giants was “OK”, in 2006 he had 10 touchdowns which were career highs and in 2007 he was the top receiver for the Giants with 70 receptions but fell shy of the 1,000 yard mark. He was a nightmare for defenses because of his size and soft hands. He disturbed defenses and made acrobatic catches rarely performed by a man of his size. These are the two main characteristics that make Plaxico so attractive to teams in the NFL. He runs the 40-yard dash in the 4.40’s making Burress a normal speed wide receiver but with great hands and agility. The list of teams in need of a receiver of his caliber is not short. Buress is not just a tall receiver, he knows how to use his abilities. We can hope that the last couple of years in jail helped him gain a bit of maturity, which is a key quality in any sport. Plaxico states he was practicing in jail 4 times a week, keeping his body in top shape. The only issue right now is the strike going on with the NFL and the rumors circulating that the season might be cancelled. This can delay and maybe hurt any possibilities Plaxico signing a deal this season. One major drawback of any team signing Plaxico is his questionable claims of injuries before pre-season. Plaxico had incidents of this sort with the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2005 and with the Giants in 2007 and 2008. The recurrent injuries and off-field “drama” are the biggest issues with Plaxico Burress, but not enough to disqualify him as third choice or maybe a back-up for some teams. Let us all hope that the only reason Plaxico Burress doesn’t play is because of his past and not because there is not a season in the NFL.