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The New York Giants released Super Bowl hero Plaxico Burress on Friday, a little more than four months after the talented but troubled wide receiver accidentally shot himself in the thigh in a New York City nightclub.

Plaxico Burress entering the criminal court building in Manhattan on Tuesday. His hearing was postponed until June and lawyers are negotiating a plea deal.

The Media’s Unnecessary Roughness on Plaxico Burress

Burress’ four-year tenure with the Giants was highlighted by a game-winning touchdown catch in Super Bowl XLII 14 months ago but it was also dogged by fines and suspensions and he was suspended indefinitely after he shot himself on Nov. 29. He is currently seeking a plea deal on faces a felony weapons charge that could put him in prison for at least 3 1/2 years if convicted.

“I am an optimist, and I believe most situations can be worked out,” Giants general manager Jerry Reese said in a statement released by the team. “We hung in there as long as we could in hopes that there could be a resolution to this situation other than the decision we made today to release Plaxico. It wasn’t to be, so now we have to move on. Like everybody else here, we want nothing but the best for Plaxico, and we are appreciative of the contributions he made to this franchise.”

Burress Suspended by New York Giants

Giants played parts of four seasons for the Giants, catching 344 passes, which places him 12th on the franchise’s career list, for 3,681 yards and 33 touchdowns.

“Plaxico’s contribution to our championship season in 2007 can never be underestimated or undervalued,” Coach Tom Coughlin said in the Giants’ release. “He displayed tremendous determination throughout that season. Having said that, I have always been as concerned about Plaxico as a man as I have been about him as a player, and my hope is that everything that has happened over the past several months represents a turning point. He is a young man with a family who has a whole lifetime ahead of him, and I personally wish him and his family well.”

The Giants had signed Burress to a five-year, $35 million contract extension last September.

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