"For the first time in a while, I don't really have any issues."
These were the words that New York Giants fans have waited to hear from Osi Umenyiora since 2007, when he first attached "disgruntled" to his name as a prefix because of his contract situation.
Umenyiora's restructured deal -- believed to be worth around $7 million for 2012 -- has finally made him a happy man. Even if it took Umenyiora firing his agent to make it happen. Yes, Umenyiora confirmed that he let go of his agent because the agent, Tony Agnone, didn't believe in the new contract.
"He felt like it was a substandard deal. He felt like I was worth more than that," Umenyiora said, via Mike Garafolo of the Star-Ledger. "He wasn't going to allow me to sign something that was substandard in his opinion."
The weirdest part of the story? Umenyiora is going to re-hire Agnone to negotiate his next contract. (So the agent essentially turned down his commission out of principle. That might have been a $210,000 principled decision if Agnone was set to make 3 percent of Umenyiora's $7 million.)
No matter what Umenyiora makes this year, Osi figures to get a new contract in 2013. Umenyiora was asked what he would do if he was in general manager Jerry Reese's shoes.
"Given the fact he's been a great player," Umenyiora said. "I would allow him to seek his fortunes elsewhere."
"He" in this case is Umenyiora. And we suspect he is right. This season likely will be his swan song in New York.
UPDATE: Umenyiora will make $6.5 million in 2012, a source with direct knowledge told NFL.com's Albert Breer. That's nearly a $2 million bump from the $4.7 million that Umenyiora was scheduled to earn in the final year of his deal.