An article that accurately describes the Revis situation?
Yep, the Times published a completely rational article today. Maybe Ben Shpigel should be condemned as a traitor to sports journalists.
March 1, 2013
On Revis, the Jets Can Best Afford to Wait and See
By BEN SHPIGEL
Either Darrelle Revis will play for the Jets in 2013, or he won’t. The simplicity of that statement obscures a complicated problem, one that will lord over the team until it is resolved, be it in six days, six weeks or six months.
Eventually the Jets must determine whether to lavish a lucrative new contract upon Revis, one of the N.F.L.’s elite defenders, or build for the future by shipping their best player — and a fan favorite — elsewhere. There is no timetable, no deadline for a decision — at least not yet — but already the situation has turned testy, with Revis taking to Twitter and, later, NFL Network to express frustration with being blindsided by the possibility of being dealt.
The Jets have since finessed what amounted to a no comment by the owner Woody Johnson at the introductory news conference for his new general manager, John Idzik. At the N.F.L. scouting combine in Indianapolis last week, Idzik said that he “always wanted Darrelle as part of our team.”
That should not be interpreted as a sign that the Jets are committed to retaining Revis, since publicly acknowledging that they are considering trading Revis would dent their leverage.
The Jets are in this position, imminent but not quite, because Revis will be a free agent after the 2013 season, and a clause in his contract precludes them from using the franchise tag as a way to retain him. And so, for the moment, they are content to wait. Since they do not have to trade Revis, there is little reason for them not to be patient.
They are waiting for Revis to continue recovering from his torn left knee ligament, which complicated his desire — and, indeed, his expectation — to be compensated beyond the frontloaded four-year, $46 million pact he signed, after a 36-day holdout, before the 2010 season. At the time, both sides viewed the deal as a compromise, with the expectation that negotiations for an extension would resume later.
The Jets are waiting for suitors to materialize. And they are waiting before proceeding with their most critical decision since they traded up to draft Mark Sanchez in 2009.
“I don’t know why you would trade him,” Andrew Brandt, an N.F.L. business analyst for ESPN who spent 10 seasons negotiating contracts and handling the salary cap for the Green Bay Packers, said in an interview. “I mean, you’ve got one of the best players in the league at the position at a reasonable salary, because most of it’s already been paid. And you’ve got a clause in the contract that, if he holds out, adds three years to the contract, which he doesn’t want. It seems like the Jets are in a leveraged position.
“The only issue is the player’s quote-unquote happiness. It’s hard to see what’s going to make him happy short of being paid like the top quarterback.”
For Revis, being paid like a top quarterback — the deal with Buffalo signed last March by Mario Williams, the league’s highest-paid defensive player, includes $50 million guaranteed — could have long-term consequences on the Jets’ quest to achieve financial flexibility, although Brandt said there were ways to mitigate the impact of such a contract on their salary cap.
If Johnson ultimately determines that he will not pay Revis, the logical solution is to trade him. Doing so would ensure that the Jets receive a reasonable return on their investment and not the compensatory draft pick that would be awarded if he were to sign elsewhere as a free agent after this season.
On some level, the Jets’ front office also realizes that 2013 will be a transition year, and that accruing a bushel of draft picks, whether for this year or next, could fill multiple needs and reposition the team for sustainable success. Then there is the not-so-minor matter of facilitating a trade to a desirable location — desirable for them, that is. That would prevent Revis from joining New England, Miami or any other A.F.C. rival, as would be his right as a free agent.
Should the Jets determine that trading Revis, who turns 28 in July, is their best option, it behooves them to wait. His trade value will not increase until he proves himself on the field. No team would surrender the compensation necessary to acquire a player of Revis’s caliber — a first-round pick, and likely more — without feeling confident that he would return to form.
Thanks for the article ... There is nothing ground breaking in it but the simple clarity "it behooves them to wait" is beautiful.
I agree that waiting until he is back playing football, is a small risk that could play big dividends. The risk is that he is not the player that he once was ... the big dividend is he is the player that he once was.
What the article fails to address is that three million of his six million salary is a series of off season bonuses, the first million due this month. Apart from the cap hit that will happen no matter whether he palys out this contract or is traded ... it seems that the Jets will have to pay that three million and whatever part of season he plays in order to collect a better return in a trade scenario. The way I see it is that the Jets FO will essentially be paying 3M for the extra (or higher) draft pick(s).
Cap gurus please correct me if I am wrong here.
Whatever happens this makes for a very interesting off-season, a small consolation for our current quarterback conundrum (clusterf*ck).