Clearing up the Shockey trade

I’m not sure what sparked this, but I’ve gotten a flood of e-mails in the past week or so asking me if the Giants are going to get the New Orleans Saints’ first-round pick as part of the Jeremy Shockey trade. The short answer is this:


The long answer is that it was a remote possibility that was never really a possibility, unless Saints GM Mickey Loomis is really, really dumb.
Here, for those of you who didn’t know — or those of you who forgot — are the details:

• The Saints sent the Giants a 2nd and a 5th rounder in 2009 for Shockey.
• The Saints also sent the Jets a fourth-rounder in 2008 and a conditional pick in ‘09 for LB Jonathan Vilma. That conditional pick became a third-rounder when Vilma played in 85 percent of the Saints’ defensive plays. It will become a second-rounder if Vilma is signed before the start of the free-agent signing period, on Feb. 27.
• If Vilma is re-signed by Feb. 27, obviously the Saints couldn’t send the same second-round pick to both the Giants and the Jets. Since the Jets deal was made first, the Jets would get that pick. Because of that, the Giants and Saints agreed to a contingency plan where, if the second-rounder wasn’t available, the Giants would get the Saints’ first-rounder (in 2009) instead. They’d still get the fifth-rounder, too.

Still with me?

So basically, the Giants get a second and a fifth in 2009 from New Orleans if Vilma isn’t re-signed by Feb. 27. Or they get a first and a fifth in 2009 from the Saints if they do re-sign him by then.

But here’s the thing: The Saints control whether or not they re-sign Vilma, and they’re certainly not going to do that prior to Feb. 27 and cost themselves a first-round pick. There’s nothing that says they can’t agree to a deal with Vilma now and wait until March 1 to have him sign it. And if Vilma wants to re-sign with the Saints, I assume he’d want to help them keep their first-rounder so they could get better, so he’d likely agree to that, too.

In other words, the Saints hold all the cards. And unless Loomis’ brain freezes and he forgets about the Feb. 27 deadline, there’s no way he signs Vilma before then. That would be a colossal, and costly mistake.

So, for those of you doing your mock drafts: The Giants have their own first-rounder (29th overall). The Saints will be keeping their first-rounder (14th). And the Giants will be getting the Saints’ second-round and fifth-round picks.

Shockey, by the way, had 50 catches for 483 yards and no touchdowns in 12 games this season. He also made lots of friends, including quarterback Drew Brees and the entire Saints medical staff.

Meanwhile, Kevin Boss — who essentially replaced Shockey in the Giants’ offense — caught 33 passes for 384 yards and six touchdowns and made quite a few friends, too.