Source: Ross leaves Giants for 3-year deal with Jaguars
Aaron Ross, a two-time starter in the Super Bowl and the Giants' first-round pick in 2007, has agreed to terms with the Jaguars as a free agent. The cornerback will sign a three-year deal that could be worth up to $15.3 million, according to a source.
Ross, the first starter from Super Bowl XLVI to leave the Giants, visited the Bengals and Redskins before accepting the Jaguars' offer. Jacksonville previously re-signed cornerback Rashean Mathis, who is coming off ACL surgery.
While the destination was unexpected, the departure was not. The Giants decided to retain their other free-agent cornerback, Terrell Thomas, and re-signed him last week. That move and the re-signing of backup defensive backs such as Michael Coe and Justin Tryon clearly signaled the end of Ross' tenure with the Giants.
Ross played in all 16 games in 2011, the first time he accomplished that in five years with the Giants. He had four interceptions, bringing his career total to 10. He played well for the Giants, but his tenure was marked by injuries and a disappointing inability to stay on the field.
Without Ross, the Giants' top three cornerbacks heading into the 2012 season likely will be Thomas, Corey Webster and Prince Amukamara, who was last year's first-round pick. Both Thomas and Amukamara have had surgery in the past year; Thomas tore his ACL and Amukamara fractured a bone in his foot. Amukamara was recently spotted at an autograph signing on crutches. The team said he underwent an injection procedure in his foot to promote healing.
Ross was the first-round pick of the 2007 draft class that helped the Giants win Super Bowl XLII. Only two of the eight players the Giants selected in that draft remain on the team: Zak DeOssie and Ahmad Bradshaw.
Ross is the second player from the Super Bowl XLVI-winning team to agree to play elsewhere as a free agent. Mario Manningham agreed to a two-year deal with the 49ers over the weekend. The Giants have 12 unrestricted free agents from the 2011 season who remain unsigned.