Jon Beason's case to stay is strong

Jon Beason
Position: Middle Linebacker
2013 Stats w/Giants: 93 tackles, 1 INT in 12 games
'13 Salary w/Giants: $1 million (prorated over 12 weeks)

There were two versions of the Giants defense this past season -- one with Jon Beason at middle linebacker, and one without him.

It wasn't even close which version was better. There was a stark contrast in the two units: The Giants allowed 18.3 points in the 11 games he started and 36.4 in the five he didn't.

It's no coincidence either. Beason was a stabilizing force on the field, in the locker room and, most importantly, in the huddle. The Giants previously lacked a middle linebacker with significant experience to command the huddle.

That seventh-round pick they used to acquire Beason from the Carolina Panthers in October proved to be a bargain. Beason was everything the Giants hoped they were getting ... and more!

"Jon came in and I think he stabilized our defense. He came in, he had a voice right away and he fit in very quickly with the players," general manager Jerry Reese said. "He did a good job for us. We think it was a good trade at the time and we still think it was a good trade. We'll evaluate Jon as we move into the offseason and we'll see where that goes."

Beason, 28, had such a significant impact that veteran safety Antrel Rolle deemed it "a must" that the Giants re-sign Beason. Former offensive lineman Shaun O'Hara, who works for NFL Network and for the Giants, called Beason the Giants' No. 1 offseason priority.

Rolle and O'Hara should know. Rolle is a leader in that locker room and O'Hara remains plugged in just several years removed from his playing days.

All signs indicate that Beason will return in 2014. The Giants have already expressed their interest and Beason has made it known he'd love to remain with the organization. There is a strong likelihood he's back next season with Big Blue.

Of course, there are some factors that need to be taken into consideration. His asking price needs to be right. The Giants must be cautious, given Beason’s injury. He tore his Achilles in 2011 and had microfracture surgery on his knee the following year.

Your Desire to Keep 'Em or Dump 'Em: 98.5% Keep Chance for Return: 85%
Why? Beason wants to return to the Giants. The Giants want Beason. All they need to do now is find a reasonable number of years and price for the middle linebacker.
Projected Contract: 3 years, $12 million

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