Journeyman looked like he had done enough to make the team
A.J. Francis can now add yet another name to the loooong list of NFL teams that have cut him — many of those more than once. Francis, a veteran defensive tackle, is one of the biggest surprises among player cut thus far on Saturday by the New York Giants.
The New England Patriots. Miami Dolphins. Seattle Seahawks. Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Washington Redskins all cut Francis, some several times, before he signed with the Giants in the spring.
This is what he told me in an interview early in training camp:
“Every team I’ve ever been on has cut me at least once. Patriots cut me once, the Dolphins cut me twice, the Seahawks cut me once, Tampa cut me once, DC cut me three times … four times, and I’m still here,” Francis said. “That’s ‘cause I’m a good kid. No coach that’s ever coached me will ever say a disparaging word about me as a person or me as a player because I come to work every day and I do my job. I don’t be in Trouble, I don’t get in trouble off the field -- you don’t hear about me getting in trouble off the field. I’ve been in the league a long time, guys get in trouble all the time, I’ve never been in trouble off the field. I do all the stuff off the field you want.”
Francis appeared to play well throughout the preseason. He had five tackles and 2 quarterback hits in the four games. The Giants, though, have Damon Harrison, B.J. Hill and Robert Thomas who are all capable of playing the nose tackle in their 3-4 defense. Perhaps cutting Francis will leave the opportunity for an EDGE player to make the 53-man roster.