EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP)Safety Landon Collins has had two stints with the New York Giants.
The first was in 2015 when the Giants jumped up in the second round of the draft and made a trade with the Tennessee Titans for the first pick in the round and grabbed Collins.
The Alabama product came in with a chip on his shoulder and had four outstanding seasons with New York.
The Giants let Collins test free agency in 2019 and he signed a six-year, $84 million contract with Washington.
The Giants and Collins reunited in October when he was signed to the practice squad. After spending the past two months working and occasionally playing. New York (8-5-1) signed him to the active roster Thursday, two days ahead of a game in Minnesota against the Vikings (11-3).
The Giants have had problems stopping the run this season and Collins gives them a tough safety who can double as an extra player in the box to stop the run and help in coverage.
Collins was promoted from the practice squad for three games this season, the maximum allowed by the league. The Giants had to sign him to the active roster if they wanted him to play again.
Collins did not know what to expect. He got the good news this week, following the release of inside linebacker Tae Crowder.
”It’s definitely humbling,” Collins said. ”But I’ve always been that way and always been a worker, so it never changed. I never came here with expectations, anything like that. I came here to go to work and be back into the building.”
Collins played three years in Washington, helping them get to the playoffs in 2020. He was released in March with three years left on his contract after foot and an Achilles tendon injury forced him to miss 13 combined games in 2020 and ’21.
When this season started, he was out of work. Now he is playing on the team that can clinch a playoff berth for the first time since 2016.
Coincidently, Collins was on the Giants that season.
”Oh, man. Is this a blessing in disguise?” said the 28-year-old Collins, who noted 2016 feels like ages ago. ”We get that opportunity again. We didn’t get to finish what we did last time. So I see we’re on that road to getting that opportunity again.”
The Giants trip to the playoffs didn’t last long in 2016. They were blown out 38-13 by the Packers in Green Bay after the team endured scrutiny because several players took a one-day trip to Florida on their day off.
The Giants can clinch a playoff berth Saturday if they beat Minnesota and two of three teams (Detroit, Seattle or Washington) lose.
Collins likes the current group of players, noting everyone is pulling for one another.
”Everybody comes to work,” he said. ”And the transparency that we have with one another and the coaches and stuff like that and just being honest with one another, keeping everyone accountable and making this thing work. It’s just a fun ride right now.”
NOTES: Coach Brian Daboll said CB Adoree Jackson (knee) and guard Shane Lemieux (foot) are out for Saturday’s game. He expects everyone else on the injury report to play. … Crowder, who was the last player taken in the 2020 draft, was signed to the practice squad on Thursday.
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