EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Citing unfinished business, defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul said Tuesday he and the Giants have agreed to terms on a new contract.
The free agent Paul announced his intentions in a post on Instagram. He said he chose to return to the team that made him a first-round draft pick in 2010 despite interest from several other teams, including the Arizona Cardinals.
"Now with that said," he wrote, "I have some unfinished business to take care of in New York!!! Giants fans! Let’s get to work for the 2016 season because your boy is back and I am not going anywhere!"
I would like to thank each and every organization that reached out to my agent during this process especially the Arizona Cardinals . It was hard to decide, but me and my family decided that it's best for me to stay in New York, just being in the NFL is a privilege and I am honored. I am truly blessed to be in this position I am in today, thank you! Now with that said I have some unfinished business to take care of in New York!!! Giants FANS! Let's get to work for the 2016 season because your boy is back and I am not going anywhere! #90PowerCircle #90IsBack
The free agency period begins at 4 p.m. EST Wednesday.
The popular pass rusher who had 16 1/2 sacks in 2011 was limited to one sack in the final eight games last year. A July 4 fireworks accident that cost Pierre-Paul his right index finger sidelined him for the first half of the schedule.
Pierre-Paul’s signing will mark the first step in improving a Giants pass rush that finished a 6-10 season with a league-worst 23 sacks. But it probably won’t be the last. With Pierre-Paul’s bookend on the line, Robert Ayers, Jr., looking for $10 million following a team-high 9 1/2-sack season, the prospects of keeping both players are slim.
The list of unrestricted free agent pass rushers has also thinned. The Giants brought in defensive end Charles Johnson, released by Carolina, for a visit Sunday. He left Monday for Tampa Bay.
They also expressed interest in four-time Pro Bowler Mario Williams, though they apparently have cooled on the former Buffalo Bills and Houston Texans end. Denver’s unrestricted pass-rushing defensive tackle Malik Jackson is headed to Jacksonville.
The 6-foot-5, 278-pound Pierre-Paul took a major step in restoring the Giants’ faith in him by undergoing off-season surgery designed to strengthen his grip in his right hand. He played most of his eight games with a club-like wrap around the mangled hand, which limited his grabbing and tackling ability.
Giants general manager Jerry Reese hinted at the NFL combine last month that a return to New York might be best for all involved.
"We know him better, I think, than anybody else would know him," Reese said. "We’re hopeful that this procedure.helps him with respect to the hand injury he has. I know he’s working hard at it."
Pierre-Paul began his Instagram post with a note of gratitude.
"I would like to thank each and every organization that reached out to my agent (Eugene Parker) during this process, especially the Arizona Cardinals," he wrote. "It was hard to decide, but me and my family decided it’s best for me to stay in New York. Just being in the NFL is a privilege and I am honoured. I am truly blessed to be in this position I am in today. Thank you."