Money Not High on Quarterback's List

Michael Strahan got paid. So did Tiki Barber and Amani Toomer and Shaun Williams. Luke Petitgout just got his reward. In the past few years, every highly-successful member of the Giants cashed in with a mega-contact. But not Kerry Collins.

Not that anyone is staging a benefit for the 30-year old quarterback who signed a four-year $16.9 million deal in 1999. Last summer, he agreed to a three-year extension that runs through the 2004 season and is worth nearly $15 million. Good money, to be sure, but not the financial windfall available to most established and record-breaking quarterbacks.

"I just extended last year, to think they would do something before the end of next year would be way off base," Collins said.

He's far from complaining, but Collins does believe if he puts up big numbers this season he'll be in line for a huge deal. The Giants thus far have paid him like a decent starter, always hedging their investment in case Collins fails to deliver. At times, he wonders why. Other times, he could care less.

"Money to me, I've seen both sides of it, I've seen the good that can come of it and I've seen the bad side of it," Collins said. "I don't get really worked up about money other than you see other guys getting paid, that's natural for anybody. Hey, that guy got this, look what he's done and look what I've done. I go back and forth on it.

"My thought on it is I've been playing some fairly good football, I'm a quarterback and there's a premium that comes along with that. I'm not asking to get more than I deserve, but I think I'm getting better all the time and there's a place for an experienced guy who's played a lot and has gone to the playoffs three times in his career and the Super Bowl once. The other side is money's not going to bring me happiness, I've learned that. I've seen the evil that it brings."
Jul 21, 2003