Well, I don’t think anyone expected this to be the story of the week, but it simply must be covered based on the sheer impact of the headlines, let alone the disastrous effects it may cause for the New York Giants and/or the Seattle Seahawks.
For any of the readers who may have had their heads trapped under rocks for the past week (glad you made it out), Deandre Baker [former CB for the Georgia Bulldogs and current starter for the Giants] and Quinton Dunbar [Former CB for the Florida Gators, traded from the Redskins to the Seahawks this offseason] have been charged with 4 counts of armed robbery with firearms, and Baker has been slapped with an additional 4 counts of aggravated assault with a firearm. For the last two days, the story has spun in several different directions with lawyers for both players declaring innocence for their clients and claiming that they have testimonies that will exonerate their clients. However, as of this article being written, both Baker and Dunbar have officially turned themselves in, leaving many unanswered questions floating around the sports world, and I will do my best to answer them in this article, as the aftershock of this event could possibly affect the playoff landscape in the NFC this year.
How Much Trouble Are Baker And Dunbar Really In?
A whole bunch. According to the Miramar Police Department report Baker and Dunbar were equipped with loaded firearms during the robbery and were threatening to kill whoever did not comply with their demands, taking expensive watches, cash and anything with monetary value, totaling up to around $70,000. Baker was the more violent character while Dunbar was more involved in going around the party/cookout they were attending to rob the others who had been enjoying the festivities. They took off after the robbery in their getaway cars and did not turn themselves in until this morning, even though warrants for their arrests were issued two days ago.
Why Would Two Professional Football Players Making Millions of Dollars Want to Rob a Small Party?
This is the $70,000 question; Why would they care so much about a couple of watches with a small handful of cash? The police report has one quote from an attendee who claims he saw Baker and Dunbar lose about $70,000 gambling a few days prior to the incident, but that still doesn’t explain throwing a career away, ESPECIALLY when you look at the details of their contract(s) (per Spotrac).
Deandre Baker made just over $6 MILLION last year due to the way the Giants structured his contract, giving him the majority of his guaranteed money in his first year of play. In fact, he made more in his rookie year than he was going to in his next three seasons combined, as the rest of the contract added up to about $10 million. His pockets should be well fed, and there is absolutely no financial angle that makes logical sense for Baker to have to rob a party.
Dunbar’s contract is a little less lucrative, as his career earnings in the first few years were far less than they should have been, given his quality of play. However, that changed when he signed a new 3 year deal for almost $6 million last season. In 2019, he made about $3 million, meaning that, while still a large amount of money, $70,000 is not worth the risk of possibly losing the rest of your contract and possibly your career.
Overall, the sum of what they stole accounts for 1.1% of the salary Baker earned last year, and 2.3% of what Dunbar earned last year
Finally, What Impact Will This Have On The Secondaries of the Giants and Seahawks?
For the New York Giants, the already-thin secondary takes another huge blow, after an already vicious cycle of defensive backs going in and out of a porous system. In the past two years, the Giants have: Reached for need and taken Eli Apple at 10 (after being offered the 20th overall pick and a second round pick from the Jets, who were attempting to moving up to select Laremy Tunsil) who they then traded to the Saints for 4th and 7th round picks. They also signed and cut Janoris Jenkins, signed Antoine Bethea [only for him to not produce and walk away in FA two years later] and now their young 1st round corner is facing 8 felony counts attributing to robbery and assault with a firearm, Joe Judge must be banging his head against a wall right now. Assuming Baker is now out of the picture, the Giants turn to other options to fill the CB2 spot on the outside across from newly signed James Bradberry. They are assumed to be moving Julian Love into the slot, meaning that the second outside position will be up for grabs between Corey Ballentine, Sam Beal and maybe Darnay Holmes (although he is assumed to be a slot-in-training). Hopefully for Big Blue, one of those three is able to step up and guard the outside and Xavier McKinney and Jabril Peppers can hold down the safety positions, because bi-annual meetings with Amari Cooper, Ceedee Lamb, Michael Gallup and the Cowboys will not be fun otherwise.
For the Seattle Seahawks, this spells major trouble. The famed ‘Legion of Boom’ is long gone, leaving behind it Tre Flowers and Brian Allen as the only corners on the roster with nfl experience according to Ourlads.com. The safety positions, held by Bradley McDougald and Quandre Diggs, while solidified, cannot cover the entire field themselves, especially in deep zone when the skills position players are spread wide, forcing the corners to play one-on-one for the first 10 yards, which we know Kyle Shanahan is already excited for. If this defense can’t hold powerful offenses in check like they were able to last year, I seriously doubt whether the powers of Russell Wilson are strong enough to push them into the packed NFC playoff picture this season, especially with such a tough division. Losing Dunbar takes even more experience away from this secondary that is already a part of a defense that is hurting from the loss of Jadeveon Clowney. The true test of the Seattle Seahawks next year will not be Russell Wilson, it will be whether the defense can keep the opponent in check so that the game is at least in reach for Russ.
Overall this is a really messed up situation with a ton of layers, and I’m sure there will be a few more twists and turns along the way that force me to come back and edit this story. Nonetheless, hopefully this gave a little depth to the situation both for the players, and for the teams; Now, if you’ll excuse me I’m going to go hug my Giants pillow and sob over another season lost already.