No one ever knows what New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman is thinking, but one has to believe that the team does not want to discontinue their relationship with Pro Bowl safety Landon Collins.

Collins, whose season ended in early December with a torn labrum in his shoulder, is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent on March 13. The Giants have given mixed signals on Collins’ future with the club and that was clouded further by trade rumors around the trade deadline, but the Giants’ willingness to deal Collins was largely unfounded.

The former Alabama star loves dressing in Blue and wants to be a Giant. The Giants want him back as well but at what price? That will all be determined this spring during contract negotiations.

“My hopes are to be here, honestly. That’s my hopes,” Collins told reporters on December 31. “Like I said from the beginning, I’ve been drafted here, I want to finish my career here. It’s a hope and it’s a dream of mine, and hopefully make it a reality.

“The process has not begun yet. Hopefully it begins soon. Gettleman announced it in the meeting today that guys that have contracts coming up, we’re going to talk about it when we have the chance to. So, it’s going to come down the line, and we’re going to have that discussion. I’m going to leave that up to my agency, and go from there.”

There have been no reports of any contract negotiations between the Giants and Collins’ agents as of yet, but the Giants may be planning to simply tag Collins, go through free agency and the draft and then circle back to hammer a deal with him to avoid him playing under a costly one-year deal that is estimated to be valued to be close to $13 million.

Tuesday, February 19 is the first day NFL teams can apply the franchise or transition tag on players they want to prevent from entering the free agent market. The deadline to tag a player is March 5. If the team and the player cannot agree on a long-term contract or an extension of some sort by July 15, the player plays the season on a one-year contract under the league’s assigned salary for their position.

In the interim, the 25 year-old Collins will continue to rehab his shoulder which was surgically repaired on December 12. The rehabilitation period is expected to last four to six months, right around the time the Giants are conducting their voluntary organized team activities (OTAs) and mandatory mini-camp.