After finishing next to last in the league, the Giants began a defensive facelift by releasing veteran linebacker Michael Boley on Tuesday.

A key part of the Super Bowl XVLI championship team, Boley appeared in all 16 games last year (with 11 starts) but was hampered by hamstring, hip and shoulder injuries at various times. He finished on third the team with 84 tackles and had three interceptions, one in each of the first three games.

Boley, 30, had one year and nearly $4 million left on the five-year, $25 deal he signed when joining the Giants as a free agent in 2009 after four seasons with the Atlanta Falcons.

"Michael Boley was brought here as a fast, athletic, versatile linebacker," coach Tom Coughlin said. "We recognized his special skills were in coverage. He's a smart player who made some big plays for us. He was an integral part of our Super Bowl XLVI championship team. Michael played outstanding football down the stretch for us that season."

In his four seasons with the Giants, Boley played in 57 games (50 starts). He had 315 tackles (237 solo), 3 1/2 sacks, three interceptions, 15 pass breakups, two forced fumbles and five fumble recoveries, including a 65-yard return for a touchdown in 2011 and a 70-yarder for a score this past season.

Power puzzle

Concerned the Superdome might not be able to handle the energy needed for its first Super Bowl since Hurricane Katrina, officials spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on upgrades to decayed utility lines, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.

The improvements apparently weren't enough, however, to prevent an embarrassing and puzzling 34-minute power outage during the third quarter of Sunday's game between the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers.