EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- David Tyree has gone from Super Bowl hero to out of a job.
The New York Giants released Tyree on Saturday in the final roster cutdown and also traded backup tight end Michael Matthews, another Super Bowl veteran, to the New England Patriots for a conditional draft pick.
Tyree missed the 2008 season after suffering a lingering hamstring injury while coming back from offseason knee surgery. The 29-year-old wide receiver dealt with minor groin, hamstring and knee injuries in training camp this year and played in just two preseason games, missing the last two.
"It's obviously a time of mixed feelings," Tyree said Saturday. "This is part of the journey. It's not like it's a great day. But at the same time I'm filled with expectations about what's next on this track, and I'm excited as well."
Linebacker Michael Boley was placed on reserve while serving a one-game suspension handed down by the NFL. He can't return to the Giants' training facility until Sept. 14, the day after the opener against the NFC East rival Washington Redskins.
The Giants also put defensive tackle Jay Alford (knee surgery) on injured reserve and waived injured defensive tackle Jeremy Clark (ankle).
The team waived quarterbacks Andre' Woodson and Rhett Bomar; running back Allen Patrick; fullback Dwayne Wright; offensive linemen Terrence Pennington, Orrin Thompson and Cliff Louis; wide receiver Shaun Bodiford; defensive linemen Maurice Evans, Tommie Hill, Robert Henderson and Anthony Bryant; linebacker Kenny Ingram; cornerback DeAndre Wright; and safeties Travonti Johnson, Vince Anderson and Sha'reff Rashad.
A sixth-round draft pick out of Syracuse, Tyree had just 54 catches for 650 yards and four touchdowns with New York. His biggest contributions always came on special teams, which earned him a Pro Bowl berth in 2005.
"David Tyree is such a class act," Giants coach Tom Coughlin said. "What a great guy he is. When he came in to see me, I had a lot of emotions running through my head. He put everything at ease, he had a big smile on his face. I told David he is forever etched in the annals of New York Giants history. That will never change. That moment in history will stand forever in time."
With the Giants trailing 14-10 late in the fourth quarter and faced with a third-and-5, Tyree hauled in a 32-yard pass from Eli Manning, pinning the ball against his helmet as Patriots safety Rodney Harrison yanked him to the ground.
The play set up Manning's winning touchdown pass to Plaxico Burress.
"It's the big bang theory," said Tyree, who caught the ball after Manning avoided a sack. "It's a moment that obviously will never be taken, it's a moment that I will cherish. I said after the game, if I never get a chance to play football again, I can't be upset with the way my career went."
Tyree also caught a 5-yard pass from Manning for his first touchdown of the season. Coming into the Super Bowl, Tyree had caught four passes all season.
"I'm not going to sit there and say I had a great camp and why would they do this," Tyree said. "I didn't have a great camp. I had a very average camp. It started terrible and worked up to average. It's about performance."
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press