Things for Buffalo Bills fans and Kelvin Benjamin went full circle earlier this offseason.
Previously a player brought in to be an impact-maker at wide receiver for the Bills, Benjamin quickly flamed out. Included in that was ESPN analyst Booger McFarland, who said on television that Benjamin was a “Popeyes biscuit away from being a tight end” once upon a time.
Then, that actually happened.
Benjamin tried out for the New York Giants this spring as a tight end during minicamp and they signed him. But with training camp barely one day in… Benjamin was released by the team per Giants Wire.
Questions as to why surfaced, and then a report via NJ.com revealed what happened. Benjamin was cut before practice on Wednesday because, in part, due to his weight.
Via the report:
Here’s Benjamin’s side of the story:
Benjamin weighed 265 pounds at the end of minicamp in June and was told by Giants staff that he needed to get down to 251 pounds for training camp. Instead, he showed up weighing 268 after putting on some muscle, Benjamin said.
But Benjamin passed the Giants’ conditioning test Tuesday, he said. The test for a tight end consists of the player completing 20 50-yard dashes in under seven seconds. Benjamin said he completed those tests and didn’t hear anything about the Giants being unhappy with his weight.
At first, the Giants evidently wanted to fine him for being overweight, but he wasn’t going to be cut. Upset about that, an animated discussion between New York head coach Joe Judge and general maanger David Gettleman ensued.
Benjamin then stormed off the field and reporters saw it, causing some hoopla:
Odd scene: Kelvin Benjamin walking off the field at the start of practice with Dave Gettleman following him. Benjamin had a conversation with Gettleman and Joe Judge a few minutes earlier pic.twitter.com/ox3doCwxqt
— Dan Duggan (@DDuggan21) July 28, 2021
“To be honest, man, I just felt like it was all a hoax. I felt like they didn’t give me a chance. I finished the conditioning. I finished all of that,” Benjamin told NJ.com. “I did what I was supposed to do. Everybody in the building was telling me I looked great. They never wanted the narrative to be good about me.”
Finally, Benjamin said he doesn’t plan to try to return to the NFL ever again. A retirement from the sounds of it.
But Benjamin didn’t say that before ripping on Judge. He said he is a coach that is never going to win a Super Bowl, claiming Judge is “a know-it-all.”
From the Giants’ perspective, there haven’t really been any rebottles. Judge says he wishes him well.
But the coach was defended by a few players still on the Giants roster.
Per Giants Wire, tight end Evan Engram said he would “go to war” for Judge. Cornerback James Bradberry said Judge’s demeanor is just all part of the plan and he’s cool with that.
“(Benjamin) is entitled to is opinion. I definitely think Coach Judge is tough. But football is tough.” Bradberry said. “A tough coach, that’s how you build structure. That’s how you build discipline. That’s what he’s building here.”
As of now, it sounds like Bills fans only have one former wide receiver for the team to watch that’s trying to now become a tight end: Jordan Matthews. However, after a workout in front of team scouts recently, Matthews is still a free agent.