The release of New York Giants defensive end Damontre Moore continues an existing and alarming trend that has seemingly marginalized the team’s roster to the point of being a perennial playoff also-ran. Moore, the Giants’ third-round pick in the 2013 NFL draft, was cut by the team on Friday, in a move that hardly surprised anyone who follows the franchise. The defensive end from Texas A&M was reportedly cut because of a physical confrontation with teammate Cullen Jenkins over Beats by Dre headphones given away by Odell Beckham.
NFL Ian Rapoport of NFL.com was the first to report what was the final straw for Moore in a tweet sent out to his followers at 5:55 p.m. on Dec. 11. “#Giants DE Damontre Moore got into a fight with Cullen Jenkins, sources say, over not getting free @beatsbydre headphones like other players.” This incident, combined with several questionable penalties that had reduced Moore’s playing time recently, got the immature defender a one way ticket out of the Quest Diagnostics Center and into NFL limbo.
James Kratch of NJ Advance Media reported on Dec. 12 that Moore was a guest on ESPN Radio in New York on Saturday, trying to explain his side of the story to hosts Steve Weatherford and Dave Rothenberg, in an interview set up by former teammate Weatherford. Because of this event and other transgressions, Moore conceded on the show that he had probably run his course with Big Blue. “I don’t think it was a one-time thing. Honestly, I think it might have culminated over time. Like I said, I’ve been a firm believer in what my values are … you make your bed, and you’ve got to lie in it. By no way was I a saint. I had a lot of learning curves and majority factors. I’ve grown over the time and I felt like, you know, things just ran its course. It happens in this game,” Moore indicated.
The release of Moore (3rd round, 2013) continues an alarming trend of New York Giants’ high draft picks who have been cut by the team before the conclusion of a rookie contract, as well as the team not re-signing drafted players after their rookie contracts expire. For instance, the second and third round picks from the 2011 draft have already been cut by the Giants (Marvin Austin, Jerrel Jernigan), while the team will still have to decide whether or not to re-sign first round draft pick from 2011, Prince Amukamara, while the Houston Texans have NFL defensive MVP from the same draft, J.J. Watt, who they have already locked up to a long term contract.
In the case of Moore, New York selected the now departed defensive end in 2013 directly ahead of current NFL starters John Jenkins (Saints), Logan Ryan (Patriots), Jordan Reed (Redskins), Hug Thornton (Colts) and Jordan Hill (Seahawks), and despite less than stellar pre-draft reports that specifically cited potential character concerns. For example, Charlie Campbell of WalterFootball.com wrote in a pre-draft report that weaknesses on Moore’s resume included such items as, “huge character concerns” and “can get blown away in run defense”. In addition, Campbell wrote that drafting Moore had “serious bust potential”.
In their quest to continue to hit home runs with every draft pick, New York has created a talent and leadership void in its locker room. “We made the move today in the interest of both parties,” said Giants general manager Jerry Reese in a statement posted on the team’s website on Friday.
Curt Macysyn is the president of Enterprise Public Affairs, a media and management firm located in New Jersey. You can follow him on Twitter @CurtMac23 for the latest NFL and college football news.