New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur is hopeful about Ereck Flowers’ eventual arrival but had harsher words for Landon Collins, who publicly spoke out about the offensive lineman’s offseason absence.
Prior to workouts on the second day of rookie minicamp, Shurmur briefly dealt with inquiries about the status of a veteran, as yet another bizarre chapter has been written in the Ereck Flowers saga. Speaking on WFAN’s Boomer & Gio, the beleaguered offensive lineman came up in an interview with safety Landon Collins.
Flowers, who will be entering his fourth professional season, has been a no-show for the Giants’ offseason training, having yet to arrive at Quest Diagnostics Training Center since Shurmur’s reign began on January 22. An optional veterans’ program, held from April 24-26, came and went without a sign of Flowers, and Collins ended all speculation by revealing Flowers’ displeasure with one of the arrivals of an expensive new Giant.
“He’s just unhappy that they picked up (Nate Solder),” Collins told hosts, Boomer Esiason and Gregg Giannotti. “I would say he needs to be here, as a teammate and as a captain because we need him here, need to get the line together so they can be on the same page.”
Solder, previously of the New England Patriots, was signed to a four-year, $62 million deal in March, a contract that made him the highest paid lineman in football. He has spent his whole career at left tackle, where Flowers has spent a majority of his Giants career.
Collins clarified that he is close to Flowers, calling him “my boy”, and praised him for his work last offseason, when he remained in New Jersey, constantly working out at Quest.
“He came in last year, he thought he did what he needed to do. He lost weight, he was in proper shape, thought he played good in the first couple of games and just kind of went downhill when the season went downhill.”
On Saturday, Shurmur confirmed that the team has been in contact with Flowers, but had some harsher words for Collins.
“That’s not for Landon to talk about,” Shurmur said. “I think the important thing is, let’s let Ereck talk for Ereck when he gets here, and we’ll worry about that later. But really, I don’t think our players should be talking about another player’s situation.”
As for Flowers, Shurmur had a slightly more positive outlook than general manager Dave Gettleman expressed during draft week.
“We’ve been in contact with Ereck. It’s our understanding that he’s in good shape and, again, I got nothing,” he said on Saturday. “I can’t wait for him to be here. I’ve mentioned it in the past, there were some things that he did last year that were really good, and I look forward to him getting here at some point and working with him.”
When asked about Flowers’ status on April 27, Gettleman said “He’s in Miami and we are here. He decided not to come. He’s an adult and he has the ability to make decisions on his own. This is a voluntary program and he has decided to stay in Miami. If you want to know why he is not here, call him.”
In a move that seemed to be the first step in an exit plan, Flowers hired super agent Drew Rosenhaus earlier this month.
This isn’t the first time that Collins has raised some controversy via a radio interview. In December, the safety referred to cornerback Eli Apple as “a cancer” in an interview with ESPN Radio’s Bob Wischusen.