DE Dave Tollefson rejoins the New York Giants

During his limited time as a free agent, veteran defensive end

Dave Tollefson had chances to sign with other teams.

There would be more playing time, more money, and more chances

to make a name for himself.

Tollefson didn’t want it though. He has liked his time with the

New York Giants and the four-year veteran was back on the field on

Saturday for a fifth season after agreeing to a one-year deal.

”The grass isn’t always greener, as they say,” Tollefson said

Saturday. ”There are a lot of things that go into making a

decision like this that aren’t money and stuff like that, and I

feel for me and my family I made the right decision.”

Tollefson knows his role with the Giants. He’s a guy who can

fill in a very deep defensive line and also someone they can count

on to play special teams. He has has played in 47 games with the

Giants since 2007, making 48 tackles, 5.0 sacks, three passes

defensed and 28 special teams tackles in his career.

In 2010, Tollefson played in 13 games and had 10 tackles, a half

sack, three passes defensed and two forced fumbles on defense. He

was tied for second on the team with 13 special teams tackles. The

previous season he had a career-high 20 tackles on defense.

”I think the opportunities maybe somewhere else could’ve been a

little better to play a little more on the D-line but that’s all

speculation,” Tollefson said. ”With the uncertainty of this whole

thing, how the lockout unfolded and stuff, I don’t make money

speculating. That’s up to the ESPN guys. My money is made in

factual information and I’ve performed here well and that’s why I

came back.”

Tollefson, who joined the Giants in 2007 when he was signed off

the Oakland Raiders’ practice squad, didn’t seem upset with his new

one-year contract. That’s the way he has gotten most of his


”So, obviously I’ll have to go through that again next year,”

he said. ”It’s going to be a little longer free agency period but

at this point it’s such a non-issue. I’ve signed one-year deals for

the last five years so it has no bearing on anything that’s

happening now.”

Having Tollefson back on the roster gives the Giants a little

more depth with Osi Umenyiora’s status uncertain. The two-time Pro

Bowl defensive end has not practiced with the team because he is

unhappy with his contract.

Umenyiora also is having an undisclosed issue with a knee and

might require surgery.

Tollefson felt his signing did not effect the Umenyiora


”Like I said, we’ve been playing together for so long now,” he

said. ”You could argue that maybe if they brought someone else in

but I’m just Dave, man. Osi knows me, the Giants know me, I am what

I am.”

Coach Tom Coughlin was happy to have Tollefson back, saying his

worked his rear end off and is back in great shape.

”He’s about 268, 270. He can run. He can play on special

teams,” Coughlin said. ”He could go in there and be one of our

package guys on second and long or third down. He knows the system.

He knows where we’re coming from. The guys all wanted him back. He

is back. Hopefully he’s going to help.”

That’s all Tollefson wants to do for the Giants.