Giants will miss Brandon Jacobs

PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Man, the San Francisco 49ers must have really been impressed with the New York Giants team that beat them in the rain in the NFC Championship Game back in January.

According to ESPNNewYork.com, former Giants running back Brandon Jacobs has agreed to a contract with the 49ers. He's the second Giants free agent to sign with San Francisco, joining wide receiver Mario Manningham.

I know some Giants fans had been harboring hope that Jacobs might not get a good enough offer elsewhere and might eventually return to the Giants, but that always seemed unlikely, and now it appears that those hopes have been dashed.

Jacobs was a two-time Super Bowl winner in New York and will always be remembered fondly by the Giants and their fans. Giants coach Tom Coughlin was talking just this morning about how difficult it is to lose players with whom you've won championships

"It's very difficult. It's not easy. The guys who have been with you the longest, that's a natural feeling," Coughlin said. "But the great thing about the experiences I've had, for example, with Brandon, Brandon makes it easier on you. There is some sentiment involved in it, but we don't say good bye. We just say, 'Next time.'"

The Giants will struggle to replace Jacobs. Sure, he'd slowed down a bit in recent years and hadn't been as much a part of the offense. But he still brings something that few if any other running backs in the league bring, in terms of the speed and athleticism he has at his remarkable size. They will need some capable veteran to team with Ahmad Bradshaw and his perpetually banged-up foot, and they've already been at work on finding one.

"It's kind of like the questions that have been asked about what it's like right after being world champions," Coughlin said. "We go to the parade, we come back from the parade, and the next day we're grading players, we're ranking players. The business just goes on. Enjoy it while you can, because you've got the next hurdle, and in order to get back on schedule, you've got to deal with these kinds of things."