Another Giant Abruptly Retires; Team Hosts Ex-Chiefs Super Bowl Starter: Report

Giants OL Joe Looney retires, team works out C Austin Reiter

Getty Austin Reiter #62 celebrates with Frank Clark #55 of the Kansas City Chiefs during the second half against the New England Patriots.

The New York Giants made a flurry of moves this past weekend. Problem is, they’re not sticking.

Todd Davis was the first to call it quits. The former Super Bowl Champion and three-time tackle-leader of the Denver Broncos was placed on the Reserved/Retired list on Tuesday, mere days after inking a one-year deal worth $990,000 (via Spotrac). Now, just one day after Davis decided to hang up his cleats, veteran offensive lineman Joe Looney looks to be following in his footsteps.

According to ESPN’s Jordan Raanan, the former Dallas Cowboys starter is retiring from the NFL four days after joining the Giants. Looney’s agent Andry Ross added some context to the decision, via NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo:

Joe always felt when his body didn’t respond the way he needed it to, it would be time to step away. He has too much respect for the Giants and coach [Jason] Garrett to not do that.

Looney, 30, spent five seasons in Dallas, four of which he played under Garrett, who served as the Cowboys’ head coach up until 2019. The former fourth-rounder’s career comes to a halt after 10 years and 104 regular-season game appearances (42 starts).

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Giants Host Austin Reiter for Visit

With Looney out of the picture, former Kansas City Chiefs starting center Austin Reiter looks like a logical addition to the Big Blue’s offensive line. ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler was the first to report of an expected visit between the Giants and the touted free agent. NFL reporter Aaron Wilson has since noted that Reiter visited the team on Saturday, per league sources.

Reiter, who checks in at 6-foot-3-inches and 300 pounds, was originally a seventh-round pick of NFC East rival, The Washington Football Team, back in 2015. After a tad over a year in D.C., Reiter was signed by the Cleveland Browns, spending two seasons with the team. However, it wasn’t until the USF product made his way to Kansas City that he began to blossom. His first season was somewhat quiet, starting just four of his 11 game appearances. Yet, he followed up his 2018 campaign by starting every regular and postseason game for the Chiefs in 2019, including their Super Bowl 54 victory over the San Francisco 49ers.


Could Reiter Push Nick Gates Over to Guard?

This past season, Reiter notched another 12 starts under his belt and earned a 70.0 overall Pro Football Focus grade. He also committed zero penalties and allowed zero sacks — likely music to the ears of head coach Joe Judge and quarterback Daniel Jones.

Not to mention, his flow would fit in seamlessly with the current hog mollies upfront (h/t @sexydexyburner on Twitter).

Should the Giants sign Reiter, he’d do one of two things; compete with Nick Gates for the starting center job — or more likely push Gates over to guard. There has been chatter out of training camp that the team will entertain moving Gates back to his original guard/tackle position of years past. Although the extent of that experiment remains a bit of a mystery.

“You’re going to see Nick Gates at times, we may flex him to guard or tackle,” coach Judge said, via NJ Media Group. “We’re always building our flexibility offensively to make sure that if something happens, we can interchange parts and keep on moving.”

The Giants have yet to truly fill the vacancy at right guard left behind by Kevin Zeitler in free agency. Will Hernandez is expected to push for the gig, but he hasn’t played the position since high school. On the other side, projected starter Shane Lemieux is expected to be sidelined a few weeks after sustaining a knee injury on the opening day of camp.

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