Idzik brings fresh start to rotten Jets
A dose of clear-eyed sanity seems to be finally creeping back into the franchise
The idea that the Jets are going to stink extravagantly in 2013 is accepted as gospel. So how is it possible to feel so much better about them anyway ? How can that be ?
It's a counterintuitive, even odd thing to say. The Jets are convening with their new draft picks for the first time just this week. But the feeling has everything to do with the early days of John Idzik's new regime -- or more specifically, the way the Jets' first-time general manager inherited the NFL equivalent of a hazmat site when he arrived and, in a very short time, has nonetheless sparked a little belief that the coming pain will be worth it for the franchise, for a change.
General manager John Idzik has acted swiftly and confidently since joining the Jets.Jets fans know pain too well. But the Jets' recent big-tent policy -- give us your malcontents, your knuckleheads, your loudmouth preeners and we'll proudly display them center stage in a miniseries on HBO -- feels as if it could be over since Idzik's arrival.The clown car that used to jolt to a stop outside Florham Park is parked on a back lot. A little clear-eyed sanity finally -- finally! -- seems to be creeping back into a franchise that hasn't been known for serious-minded management the past few years. Rex Ryan's goofy Sanchez tattoo is the least of it.
The wrongheadedness of bringing Tim Tebow here was gallingly obvious from the moment he arrived. Yet somehow, when Idzik cut poor Tebow on Monday -- another absurdity finally acknowledged -- it still felt refreshing when Ryan conceded for the first time what he should've said long ago: Tebow's treatment here was crazier than bringing him here in the first place.
Of course, by then it was too little, too late.
The Jets have been crying out for a reality check.They were in denial before the Rex Tilt-a-Wheel gave way to Neutered Rex.Idzik took over a lot of situations that had exploding-cigar potential. And yet, from the start, he has shown a sure hand and willingness to make hard choices across the board. He drafted Geno Smith after everyone else passed on him in the first round, rattled Mark Sanchez's cage, got the salary-cap mess that Mike Tannenbaum left him under better control, and traded Darrelle Revis on the Jets' timetable, not Revis' or the Bucs' -- then objected in a calm but firm way when asked about Revis' parting insinuation that he was untruthful with him.
"Absolutely not," Idzik said this week on "The Mike Lupica Show" on ESPN NY 98.7. "I'll be called a lot of names, have been in my career, will be in the future. Dishonest is not one of them. Anyone that's worked with me directly, anyone that knows me, knows that. ... Honesty and integrity will always be a calling card of the Jets. It's always been a big part of who I am. That will never change."It's not often a new guy takes on his franchise's potential Hall of Fame player and doesn't flinch before or after shipping him out of town.And that should only inspire faith about Idzik's ability to make the right call on Ryan's fate.
That could be delicate for a different new guy in town since owner Woody Johnson kept Rex when Tannenbaum was fired. But Idzik has calmly made no apologies for letting Ryan roll into this year on a hot seat that this new GM made only hotter by letting so many of last year's starters walk in free agency.The Jets are a teardown, not a tweak. Idzik has made no bones about that either.What's been astonishing is how quickly long-suffering Jets fans have accepted that this is going to require a little patience.Patience is so not New York. And again, the explanation has to be this: It's been a blast of fresh air and hope to finally have someone at Florham Park who frames things with reality as his guide -- not bravado, not bluster, not inexplicably bad judgments about things that seem so obvious to everyone else.And that felt especially true again at the retro sight of Rex reminding folks earlier this week, "I think our football team, since I've been here as head coach, has actually won more playoff games than the New England Patriots. I'm just throwing that out there because it seems like it gets lost."
Still with the Belichick thing, Rex ? Still ?
Ryan willfully ignored the many, many other games the Jets lost.Or how they haven't even made the postseason the past two years.Or how it's never a good thing when the Butt Fumble is your most-watched highlight of 2012.
Idzik seems to have a strong grasp of the truth. He seems to have an idea of how to run a team, how to manage the message, how to confront conflict or brush fires and not flinch even under the threat of personal attack. It's also nice to be confronted with a Jets GM who stresses "integrity" over being suspected of making moves to sell PSLs. He's been very good at explaining his philosophical planks in clear language too. The coddling is over. He says competition, the pressure to perform, breeds better football teams.Of course, we still don't know if Idzik has an eye for talent evaluation. Again, it's very, very early in his stay. Yet even to a cynic, it feels as though the Jets' circus has been replaced by an encounter group run by a grown-up who demands genuine accountability. And his name is not Rex. That's reason enough to drop the black humor and dare to believe that better days are ahead for the Jets, distant as they may be.
1. The Idzik Five: The Jets can bill it as a five-way quarterback competition now, but it's impossible to have a five-man battle in training camp. A four-way also would be difficult. Even a three-man fight would be pushing the envelope. Remember, two-a-day practices are history, so reps are at a premium. When they're in Cortland this summer, the Jets can't lose sight of the most important objectives. In addition to picking a starting quarterback, they have to learn and get comfortable with a new offense and -- this may sound overly simplistic -- get their starters ready for Week 1. They can't let the quarterback situation preoccupy them and become counterproductive for the team.It seems like new GM John Idzik will follow the Seahawks' model from last preseason. The breakdown of the actual game reps shows it was basically a two-man race: Russell Wilson 138 snaps, Matt Flynn 99, Josh Portis 31 and Tarvaris Jackson eight, according to ESPN Stats & Information. The Seahawks didn't have to learn a new system on the fly, a huge benefit.
In the Jets' version, rookie Geno Smith will play the role of Wilson; he'll get every chance to show he can play. Sanchez bears similarities to both Flynn (big contracts) and Jackson (incumbents on thin ice). He has to get a decent number of reps because he could be the starter or he could be trade bait. David Garrard is the wild card. He could be the fallback option if Smith isn't ready and Sanchez is shipped out, meaning he, too, will need quality reps. As for Greg McElroy and Matt Simms, one of them figures to be left behind when the team leaves for Cortland in late July. I wonder if Rex Ryan has any juggling experience.
P.S.: Before the final pre-season game, the Seahawks traded Jackson to the Bills. Will the same happen to Sanchez? A fascinating summer awaits.
1.a. Slow hand: One thing we've already learned about Idzik: He doesn't rush into big decisions. He let the Darrelle Revis soap opera play out for three months before pulling the trigger (in the end, a good move) and he held on to Tim Tebow until he exhausted all efforts, however futile, to trade him. You can bet he'll take his sweet time to sort out the quarterback situation.
2. Warming to Geno: Smith is getting beat up for a lot of things, but there's one criticism that makes no sense -- this notion that he's a poor cold-weather quarterback. In college, he was 4-1 when the game-time temperature was under 41 degrees. The lone defeat came last December against Syracuse in the snowy Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium. He was lousy, no question about it, but it was his only bad game in the cold. His stats in the five cold games read like this: 90-for-126 (71 percent), 1,215 yards, 10 touchdowns and 0 interceptions. If that's bad, the Jets would sign up for bad in a New York minute.
3. All hands on deck: Bills coach Doug Marrone, in an interview last week, provided some insight into why they preferred EJ Manuel over every quarterback in the draft. He said their research showed that quarterbacks with big hands tend to perform better in cold-weather cities. Of the five highest-drafted quarterbacks, Manuel has the biggest hands -- 10 3/8 inches from thumb to pinky. The smallest? That would be Smith (9 1/4 inches), which may explain why he had 32 fumbles in 39 career starts. In the aforementioned cold-weather games, Smith was charged with seven fumbles, losing three.
4. Xs and Os and Zzzz: The Smith texting story calls to mind a story that has become almost legendary at One Jets Drive. One time, a player on a pre-draft visit actually fell asleep while waiting outside the office of former GM Mike Tannenbaum. I'd love to reveal the identity of the player, but I promised I wouldn't. I'll just say this: The Jets didn't draft him; another AFC East team picked him in the first round. Conversely, there's the story of WR Stephen Hill, who visited the Jets last year in a business suit. Now that's the way you impress on a job interview.
5. Poor Tim: Tim Tebow could make history, but not the kind of history he covets. He could become only the second quarterback never to start another game after winning in the playoffs. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, via the Denver Post, the only quarterback in that club is Bob Lee. He started two playoff games for the Vikings in 1977, replacing the injured Fran Tarkenton, and that was all she wrote.
6. Chip off the old Pete: If you haven't figured it out by now, Idzik's mantra is "competition." Being around Pete Carroll for three years in Seattle probably rubbed off on him. That's Carroll's deal -- competition -- dating to his days at USC. In fact, Carroll used to have "Competition Tuesday" at USC, an intense practice in which players battled for starting jobs. He also designed "ComPete" T-shirts. Can anybody come up with an Idzik slogan? A couple of thoughts: "Let's Get Id On." Or maybe: "Let's 'Zik 'Em." Hey, there's a reason why I'm not in advertising.
7. No line (additions) on the horizon: This point was overlooked in the quarterback hysteria from last weekend, but by picking DT Sheldon Richardson, OL Brian Winters and two other offensive linemen, Idzik basically secured the offensive and defensive lines for the foreseeable future -- assuming the selections pan out. When you add them to the likes of D'Brickashaw Ferguson, Nick Mangold and Muhammad Wilkerson, the Jets should be solid in the trenches, a big step toward achieving sustainable success.
7.a. New York, New York, New York: There's a lot of local flavor on the O-Line. Ferguson is a product of Freeport High School on Long Island, rookie Oday Aboushi from Xaverian High in Brooklyn and Willie Colon from Cardinal Hayes in the Bronx. Colon grew up in the Melrose projects on 156th Street in the South Bronx, and he still has family there. Aboushi now lives in Staten Island.
8. 'Q' is for question mark: The decision to move Quinton Coples to outside linebacker is a head scratcher. At 280 pounds, he'd be the biggest linebacker in the league, raising questions about his ability to play in space and drop into coverage. The only linebackers close in weight are the Chiefs' Tamba Hali (275 pounds) and the Ravens' Courtney Upshaw (272). Ryan may see visions of Adalius Thomas in Coples. Thomas, who played for Ryan in Baltimore, was an athletic, 270-pound defensive end in college. He moved to outside linebacker and enjoyed a long, productive career. Coples is a fine athlete for an interior lineman, but you wonder if he has the quick-twitch speed to thrive on the edge.
9. Bargain hunting: So far, Idzik has added eight veteran free agents -- Garrard, RB Chris Ivory, RB Mike Goodson, S Dawan Landry, LB Antwan Barnes, G Willie Colon, DT Antonio Garay and G Stephen Peterman. Combined cost in up-front bonuses: $5.2 million. It reminds me of Bill Parcells' approach in 1997, when he added a bunch of "hold-the-fort" guys, as he called them. Of the Idzik additions, only two can be considered players on the ascent -- Ivory and Goodson. That's why they received the biggest signing bonuses -- $2.25 million and $1 million, respectively.
10. Totally random thought: Smith will be the first "Geno" or "Eugene" to play quarterback in NFL history, according to ProFootballReference.com.
The AFC East blog continues it “Hope and Concern” series in the division.
Here are the biggest reasons to be hopeful and concerned about the 2013 New York Jets :
Biggest reason for hope : General manager John Idzik
The Jets began the offseason in a large salary-cap deficit. Thanks to Idzik, they came out of it under the cap for 2013 and have more room for future seasons. Idzik came to New York with a solid reputation with the Seattle Seahawks and showed he’s knowledgeable with roster management in his first offseason. For example, Idzik made the wise football decision to cut Tim Tebow and a necessary but tough decision to trade star cornerback Darrelle Revis. The Jets will most likely suffer this season after tearing down the roster of veteran players. However, Idzik only needed a year to clean up former general manager Mike Tannenbaum's mess. The Jets are finally making a majority of roster decisions that make sense. Idzik’s goal is to put New York in a position to contend in the next two or three years.
Biggest reason for concern : Lack of talent
As we mentioned, the Jets have to field a team this season and it probably won’t be pretty. New York lacks talent at this point nearly across the board. The Jets could not afford to keep their quality free agents due to a very tight salary cap. New York has major issues on offense. The Jets are unsure at quarterback and lacks playmakers at wide receiver and tight end. New York’s offensive line also underachieved in 2012. New offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg will try to implement a West Coast offense but doesn’t have much to work with. Jets head coach Rex Ryan is in a must-win year and probably has his weakest roster since taking over the Jets in 2009. Ryan will have to put forth arguably his best coaching effort to date just to keep his job.
We have our first off-the-field incident of the John Idzik era with the New York Jets. Possible starting running back Mike Goodson, who signed a three-year, $6.9 million contract with the Jets in March, was arrested on drug possession and weapons charges, New Jersey state police spokesman Stephen Jones told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.Goodson was found with a friend intoxicated on Route 80 in New Jersey at 3 a.m. Friday morning. He was taken to jail and charged with marijuana possession, possession of paraphernalia, unlawful possession of a loaded handgun and possession of a hollow-point bullet.
This puts Idzik in a sticky situation. All eyes within the Jets and outside the team will be watching to see how the first-year general manager handles the first arrest under his watch.Will Idzik lay down the law ? The Jets have been a circus for a while, and player arrests certainly contribute to that image. Idzik came to New York to clean up the Jets and get the focus back on football. It’s possible that he could have zero or low tolerance for drug and alcohol-related incidents.
Or will Idzik look the other way this time with Goodson? He was one of Idzik’s first signings in free agency. Goodson has the potential to win the starting job at running back, or at least play a significant role on offense. New York doesn’t have much talent on offense to lose. Perhaps Idzik provides Goodson a second chance.Idzik can set a tone either way with the Jets' organization after Goodson’s arrest. There are pros and cons to each decision that Idzik must consider. Also expect the NFL to look into Goodson’s case once the legal system runs its course, which might lead to a suspension to start the 2013 season.
New York Jets running back Mike Goodson was arrested Friday morning on drug possession and weapon charges, according to the New Jersey state police. You can read the full story here.After signing a three-year, $6.9 million deal with the Jets in the offseason, Goodson, 25, seemed like a lock for the team's backfield. He was expected to be in the rotation alongside fellow offseason acquisition Chris Ivory and returnee Bilal Powell. Joe McKnight, who said Thursday "They're gonna have to kill me to take my spot," also figures to be in the mix. The Jets lost starter Shonn Greene to Tennessee in the offseason.
Now, as the legal process plays out and a possible suspension looms for Goodson, this could throw a wrench into the Jets' plans. Will Goodson be available, and if so, can the team count on him ? It seemed McKnight may have been the odd man out,but is he suddenly going to be needed? These are questions that will needed to be answered in the upcoming months.Goodson, a fourth-round pick of Carolina in 2009, has rushed for 722 yards and three touchdowns in his career. He's played in 40 games, including 12 with Oakland last season, when he rushed for 221 yards. He's shown some ability of being a pass-catching running back, as he hauled in 40 passes in 2010, and caught 16 passes last season. His career-high in carries is 103, which came in 2010.
When Ruston Webster called old friend John Idzik after Idzik was hired as the Jets’ general manager Jan. 18, he had two things to say.
“Congratulations,” the Tennessee Titans general manager said.
There was a pause.
“ Are you sure you want to do this ? ”
Being an NFL general manager is a dream that personnel men, scouts and salary cap experts around the league share. Molding a team’s roster with millions of dollars to burn is quite the gig.
But in Idzik’s case, the rush has come with plenty of headaches.
• He signed free agent Mike Goodson to share the starting job at running back. Then saw Goodson charged with five counts of drug and gun possession on Friday. Goodson was a passenger in a car — driven by a man with a previous drug-possession conviction — that was stopped in the left-center lane on Interstate 80 in New Jersey a shortly after 3 a.m. Friday morning. Idzik cut two players who were arrested earlier this month and now must decide whether to do the same with Goodson.
• He cut numerous veterans due to a bloated salary cap he inherited from his precedessor, Mike Tannenbaum regime.
• He traded one of the best defensive players in the league, sending cornerback Darrelle Revis to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers because Revis’ contract exorbitant demands didn’t fit owner Woody Johnson’s view of smart money.
• He cut Tim Tebow, a move that angered Tebow Nation and highlighted Johnson’s major miscalculation of trading for a suspect player who sparked a circus atmosphere.
• He signed quarterback David Garrard to compete with Mark Sanchez, only to see Garrard abruptly retire last week because of recurring knee issues.
• He drafted West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith, who quickly had to defend himself against charges that he’s a diva.
Unlike GMs in smaller markets with fan bases who don’t feel as tortured, Idzik hasn’t had a grace period from the media or agitated Jets fans. And don’t expect opinionated tweeter Joe Namath to start advocating the patience Johnson preached in a recent interview.
Is Idzik sure he wants to do this ? Yeah.
Do others believe his reputation as a thoughtful, patient, confident decision-maker will help handle the pressures of this job ? Yes.
But does Idzik even know what hit him yet ?
“Not yet, to be honest. Not there yet,” he said last week. “We have offseason program, the (organized team activities) coming up, the mandatory minicamp. After you get through mandatory minicamp, then you can kind of look back and say, ‘What just happened?’ I’ve been here a little over four months and it just seems like one continuum.”
Idzik, a wide receiver during his college days at Dartmouth, graduated magna cum laude with a degree in mathematics in 1982.His father, John Sr., was an assistant coach for four NFL teams, winning Super Bowl V with the Baltimore Colts in the 1970 season. He wrapped up his NFL career with the Jets in 1979.While serving in various front office roles from 1996 to 2012 during stints with the Buccaneers, Arizona Cardinals and Seahawks, John Jr. handled contract negotiations. He previously dabbled in scouting and coached briefly as graduate assistant at Duke while getting his master's degree in liberal studies, but he’s mostly known as a numbers guy — and as a guy who will double- and triple-check those numbers to make sure they’re correct.
“John was always that guy that was last to leave the building, burning the midnight oil,” said Webster, who worked with Idzik both in Tampa and Seattle. “I’d say, ‘John, let’s get out of here,’ and he’d say, ‘I have to call guys on the West Coast,’ or something like that. Always there late at night, working.”Johnson liked how detailed Idzik’s staff was preparaing for the draft. By Johnson’s count, there were 5,000 reports compiled and 300 schools scouted. Johnson also noted how Idzik “wanted everybody’s input and discouraged sitting back.” Reading into Johnson’s tone: Idzik’s methods are more thorough than Tannenbaum’s.
“His demeanor, his preparation, his unflappability, he wants to make decisions on his terms, which he’s doing and he’s inclusive,” added Johnson. “It’s true and defines who he is.”
Slow and steady
Idzik’s pace is often a slower one than others would like, but it leads to confidence in his decisions. To him, they’re the right ones because he’s made sure they’re right.“He’s going to do what’s best for the club, period,” said Seahawks GM John Schneider, who advocated for Idzik during the Jets’ hiring process. “He’s not going to get bullied or pushed around, whether it’s media influence or whatever.”Perhaps a GM who didn’t know Idzik would’ve bailed when the Revis negotiations sputtered for nearly three months while Idzik waited for the best deal possible.
Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik sat five feet from Idzik when both worked under former Tampa Bay GM Rich McKay. He declined to discuss specifics of the Revis trade negotiations, but Dominik surely knew how deliberate Idzik would be.What could’ve been done in February was instead completed at nearly the latest possible point: Revis to the Bucs for a first-round pick this year (No. 13 overall, which Idzik used to select Missouri defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson) and a conditional pick next year.
Just as he did with the release of Tebow, which happened after an exhaustive search uncovered no takers before, during and after the draft, Idzik took his time.“There’s a purpose behind everything he was doing,” Dominik said. “John’s a very deep thinker. He’s trying to play it like chess, like we all do. You can’t just live the moment today, you have to look down the road one — two, three years. That’s the hardest part of being a GM.”
While walking the hallway at the NFL’s career symposium in Philadelphia this month, a bystander told Idzik he looked taller than the last time he’d seen him.
“So they haven’t beaten me down yet, huh?” Idzik replied.
If these last few months haven’t done it, maybe it won’t happen. Idzik has already improved the communication between the front office and the locker room.Sanchez might not have liked the drafting of Smith, but he praised Idzik for keeping him in the loop. Cornerback Antonio Cromartie admits he was miffed after Revis was traded but received a call from Idzik shortly thereafter. Idzik told Cromartie he wanted to speak to him face-to-face when he arrived at the facility.
“Not in San Diego!” Cromartie, a former Charger said. “I had (former GM) A.J. Smith, man. He wouldn’t listen to what nobody was saying.”And then there's the coach. Idzik inherited Rex Ryan and must decide on his future at some point. For now, the bombastic Ryan believes the methodical Idzik could serve as a counter-balance for him.
“What’d he go to, Duke ? And I didn't,” Ryan said with perfect comedic delivery. “Are we good for each other ? We’ll see. I think so.”
Jets brass believes in Idzik’s approach as the organization tries to clean up its image after two losing seasons filled with back-page headlines.“It’s been impressive how he’s come in, quickly assessed situations and identified strategic ways to address them,” team president Neil Glat said. “He’s a good guy to work with and has commanded people’s respect right away.”
1. Double trouble : John Idzik has a solid plan for rebuilding the Jets, but the plan isn't foolproof, as we now know. The new GM endured an Ike Davis kind of week, as he apparently has swung and missed on his first two free-agent signings -- QB David Garrard (retired) and RB Mike Goodson (arrested). Fortunately for the Jets, they weren't huge financial commitments, but that doesn't mean Idzik gets a pass. In both cases, he took a calculated risk -- and came up short.The idea of signing a player of Garrard's ilk was smart, but they bet on damaged goods. He spent two years out of football and his knee problems were widely known. An AFC personnel executive told me at the time of the signing, "His knee is a concern. He'll look fine in drills, but I don't know if he can take a hit." Turns out that Garrard, 35, couldn't cut it in drills, either, prompting his abrupt retirement. Now there's a hole in Idzik's quarterback plan.Goodson arrived with character concerns. There was nothing major on his record, but he bounced from the Panthers to the Raiders before becoming a free agent, and it always raises suspicions when a player with raw talent is on the move. The questions centered on his attitude and personal issues, a league source said. The Jets took a chance, betting on his upside with a three-year, $6.9 million contract. Now his future with the team is a major question mark after Friday's arrest on drug and weapon charges. An opposing scout, familiar with Goodson's background, said of the Jets: "Do these guys do background checks ? " They do, but there's risk with virtually every acquisition. Idzik assessed risk versus reward, arrived at a value and pulled the trigger for Goodson and Garrard. If you're a Jets fan, you hope these were only two blips on the screen and not indicative of Idzik's evaluation skills.
2. How 'bout a refund ? It'll be interesting to see how Idzik handles the Goodson situation. He cut the two nobodies arrested recently for possession of marijuana, Claude Davis and Cliff Harris, both of whom were signed by the previous administration. But that doesn't mean he will take the same approach with Goodson, whose contract includes a $1 million signing bonus. The bonus is divided into payouts, and I'm told he has yet to receive the full amount; he has pocketed at least $500,000. If Idzik tries to send a message and decides to cut him before the legal process plays out, it would be harder to recoup the money, according to a source. He'll have a better chance if he waits for the courts (and the league) to rule on the matter.
3. Wounded knee : Garrard missed some workouts early in the offseason program, a source said, fueling speculation in the locker room that he wasn't right, physically. In recent practices, he was sharp on his short throws, I'm told, but he labored on longer routes because he couldn't drive the ball, probably because of his balky knee. As a result, he bounced some passes. Maybe Garrard read the handwriting on the wall, seeing Mark Sanchez and rookie Geno Smith make throws he no longer could complete. Before the knee complications, the organization felt Garrard had a decent chance of emerging as the starter until Smith was ready.
4. A cool Brees : For those wondering if Sanchez still can get his career turned around, we bring you the story of Drew Brees, who received a second chance with the Chargers because of the actions of another quarterback on the roster. Brees played poorly in his third season (2-9 record, 67.5 passer rating), prompting the Chargers to draft Philip Rivers in 2004. Rivers would've started as a rookie, but he derailed his chances with a long holdout. They had no choice but to stick with Brees, who responded with his first Brees-like season. Sometimes athletes need to see the end before they can create a new beginning. Can Sanchez capitalize on his break (Garrard's retirement) in the same fashion? Food for thought.
5. The dilemma : The Jets are billing it as a fair and open competition, but is it really ? Make no mistake, Smith is the preferred candidate. If he proves capable of running the offense, he'll be the Week 1 starter. But would that be the wise move? Not every rookie turns into Russell Wilson, you know. Considering the dearth of skill-position talent on offense, Smith probably would struggle. Unless he's Robert Griffin III, he could get swallowed up by the enormity of the challenge, perhaps at the expense of his psyche. The right thing to do, based on what we know now, would be to start Sanchez and make him the sacrificial lamb for a few weeks. But for this organization, which is suffering from Sanchez fatigue, there could be a temptation to ignore the right thing and do what feels right, which would mean starting fresh with Smith. Mark my words, this will become an internal debate if the competition is close.
5.a. Geno's pinnacle : This is what a longtime GM told me last week about Smith: "When I saw him against Texas [25-for-35, 268 yards, four TD passes], I said to myself, 'There's the No. 1 pick in the draft.' That's what he looked like. As the season went on, though, he never had any bring-back moments. He was a lot closer to ordinary." West Virginia lost five straight after the Texas win, dropping to 5-5.
6. All the king's men ... gone: When Rex Ryan was interviewed for the head-coaching vacancy in January, 2009, he met with four team officials -- owner Woody Johnson, GM Mike Tannenbaum, assistant GM Scott Cohen and scouting chief Joey Clinkscales. Don't look now, but three-quarters of that room is gone. Cohen became the latest casualty of the administration change, as his expiring contract wasn't renewed. Clinkscales left a year ago for the Raiders and Tannenbaum, of course, was fired.Idzik might have an understated personality, but he has made it abundantly clear he's no wallflower when it comes to moving and shaking. He gutted the roster and gutted the front office, as he attempts to surround himself with his people. Ryan can't feel too comfortable. I have no reason to doubt Idzik's sincerity when he says nice things about Ryan, but the law of the NFL jungle usually prevails in these situations. GMs want to hand-pick their coach. Ryan needs a miracle season to save his job.
7. Survivor : One holdover expected to survive the purge is senior personnel executive Terry Bradway, who served as GM from 2001 to 2005 before slipping into a background role. It's unclear, however, if his role will change. Idzik will hire former Cards GM Rod Graves for a front-office position, CBS Sports reported. They worked together in Arizona. There was buzz in the scouting community that Idzik was interested in ex-Seahawks personnel director Will Lewis, another former colleague, but he was hired by the Chiefs. The Jets have at least three front-office positions to fill.
8. Tebow laughs : Speaking to a church group Friday night in his hometown of Jacksonville, former Jets QB Tim Tebow was asked to name his most memorable moment in 2011, when he led the Broncos to the playoffs."One of my favorite stories, ironically, was against the Jets," he told the audience, according to the Florida Times-Union -- a reference to his last-minute win in Denver. With excellent timing, he added, "And probably my greatest Jets highlight, I guess." At least he can laugh about it.
9. Money for nothing: Between Garrard and Drew Stanton (remember him ? ), the Jets spent $600,000 in signing bonuses for quarterbacks that never made it to minicamp.
10. Sloppy seconds: Smith became the fourth quarterback to be drafted in the second round by the Jets. The first three went a combined 12-29 -- Al Woodall (5-14), Browning Nagle (3-10) and Kellen Clemens (4-5). I don't think Woodall fired his agent, though.
The media will be at the Jets OTA session on Wednesday and we will follow the Green & White’s mid-week workout on all of our media outlets. Then on Thursday, “Jets Talk LIVE”will air in our usual 3:00 p.m. time slot.
Q: As we have heard repeatedly this year, "free agency is about need while the draft is about talent." Now that (David) Garrard is retiring and (Mike) Goodson is going to jail, free agency has not gone well for (John) Idzik. How much "need" have we lost with these two?
EA: Last week was a challenging one for the Jets. In less than 48 hours, David Garrard went public with his retirement plans and Goodson was arrested.Goodson was charged with five counts of drug and gun possession last week, but I’m not a lawyer and thus I don’t have a prediction for his legal future. Goodson is a member of this football club and Jets CEO Woody Johnson told USA Today and NFL Network that the Jets are still in “fact-finding” mode regarding their new RB.I loved the signing of Garrard and when I spoke to the veteran — he was giddy about his opportunity here. Garrard had a legitimate chance to start, but the skeptics wondered if he could stay healthy. And Garrard, who underwent arthroscopic knee surgery last year, said he couldn’t get through spring workouts without the knee swelling up. One thing to keep in mind about Garrard’s departure is at least it’s not August.
Now that Garrard has departed, are the Jets in the market for a veteran quarterback? Perhaps, but there aren’t a lot of guys floating about on the street. They might let OTAs play out a little bit and see how their four signal callers perform before making a move. Nobody is talking about Greg McElroy either and I know he will put his best foot forward this spring.The Jets signed Goodson because he adds explosiveness to the offense. A 4.4 guy, Goodson can make things happen in space and he finishes runs. There is good depth at the position regardless with Chris Ivory, Bilal Powell and Joe McKnight.
Q: We've heard a lot about the draft picks and how they're progressing though minicamp. How about the undrafted rookies? Which under-the-radar guys have impressed you the most?
EA: Good question. Zach Rogers, a Tennessee product, caught a lot of balls in the slot at rookie camp and impressed Rex Ryan with his special teams work. Center Dalton Freeman, a two-time All-ACC first-team selection and 2012 AP All-America second-teamer, was solid and could challenge Caleb Schlauderhaff for the backup center spot. Outside linebacker Troy Davis, a Central Florida alum who led the Knights with eight sacks and 11.5 tackles for loss as a senior, is an intriguing pass rushing prospect. The Jets are also awfully young at safety and Rontez Miles, a player who collected nine interceptions the past two seasons at California PA, could jump right into that mix.You also have to consider K Brett Maher (Nebraska), OLB Sean Progar-Jackson (Northern Illinois) and DT Lanier Coleman (Louisiana-Lafayette) because they were tryout players who flashed enough to earn contracts.
Q: Are the Jets training Joe McKnight to be a receiver?
EA: OTAs just started and we won’t be out there until Wednesday, so I really don’t know the answer to that. As of now, McKnight is still in the mix at running back and it will be interesting to see how reps are divided up there this spring. McKnight could line up at WR at times, but we will have to see. He also has experience on the other side of the ball at defensive back.
Q: With the Jets offensive weapons still lacking and receiver Brandon Lloyd on the market, do you think he would be a viable option for the Jets to help whoever plays quarterback come the start of the season?
EA: It is somewhat of a surprise to see Lloyd still on the market. The 31-year-old wideout is coming off one of his best statistical campaigns last year in New England as Tom Brady hit him 74 times for 911 yards for a 12.3-yard average. Yes I think Lloyd would be a viable option for a number of clubs and you would expect he will find a new home soon.
Long Island, NY
Q: How would you grade our defense overall from what you have seen on the field? (Be completely honest F to A ). Is there any new update on Geno? Which QB has the advantage to start?
EA: The defense gets an INC (Incomplete) because I have yet to see the squad together at OTAs. I have heard good things from the defenders about a number of things including Rex Ryan’s involvement, Dennis Thurman’s new role as coordinator, the talent and depth at CB and the speed and athleticism of the front seven. What young safety is going to step up and play alongside Dawan Landry? Is Demario Davisready for prime time and how do the OLBs look ? No new update on rookie QB Geno Smith. He has impressed his teammates with his work ethic and now he is facing all NFL quality players during OTAs. I truly don’t think anyone has an advantage to start at this point.
Q: Will Kyle Wilson be the No. 2 at Cornerback or Dee Milliner ?
EA: Antonio Cromartie raved about Wilson’s offseason and the latter hasn’t let the selection of Milliner bother him. Wilson is a pro’s pro and he is going to battle like hell to win that No. 2 job. But with that being said, Milliner is a special talent. When you draft someone No. 9 overall, they are going to be on the field. The Jets consider their top three CBs all starters anyway and you have to play a ton of nickel in this league, so bring on the competition. The Green & White love their talent and depth that they have assembled at the cornerback position. It’s their most loaded position on the roster and that is with D. Revis down in Tampa.
Q: Will Ryan Spadola get his shot?
EA: Yes. The Jets are thin at receiver and they were happy to sign Spadola to a deal out of Lehigh. The 6’3”, 200-pounder, a Howell, NJ native, had an ultra-productive collegiate career with 232 receptions and 24 TDs. He had the typical ups and downs at rookie camp. Guys like Spadola have to make some noise now in OTAs, so they get some confidence heading into Cortland
Why Joe Namath is wrong
Drafting Geno Smith where they did made plenty of sense for the Jet
By Chris Sprow | ESPN Insider
If you're a New York Jets fan, make a little note on your fridge-sized schedule or put a reminder in your Outlook calendar: A few minutes after halftime of the Week 7 game between the Jets and Patriots this upcoming season, Mark Sanchez will have made a little more than $5 million toward his total cap hit of $12.85 million for 2013. That number is notable for this reason: That $5 million is what Geno Smith is going to make over the four years of rookie deal he'll sign with the Jets -- total.It won't matter if Smith has Jay-Z or Jay Mohr as his agent -- that total is locked in. At that point, remind those who think drafting Smith was a mistake, or not a big need -- as Joe Namath stated this week -- that what the Jets will pay Sanchez for nearly 50 percent of what should be his last, lame-duck season, they'll likely pay Smith on the entirety of his first contract. This means that at its highest point, Smith's first deal will never represent a cap hit of even 2 percent of the Jets total salary cap.And whether Smith ever becomes a great player, a good player, or merely a quality backup, New York's decision to draft him where it did was a smart one. Maybe he wasn't a "need" by the technical standards of Namath's definition -- yes, Sanchez is available to start football games. Namath and so many suffering Jets fans have been exposed to so much lunacy in decision-making at the QB position that it's easy to forget that smart franchises don't find the best QB value when it's a huge need -- they find it and have the chance to develop a player when it's not.
The decision on Smith, and New York's draft strategy as a whole, actually makes a lot of sense, and there a number of reasons why. Here are five :
The Rex Effect
NFL total defense rankings for defenses run by Rex Ryan over the last eight NFL seasons, four in New York, four as defensive coordinator in Baltimore.
1. They maximized the chance to compete now
So many fans clamor for teams to draft with the goal of mending a roster weakness that they often overlook the value of maximizing a strength. As you see in the chart at right, over the past eight NFL seasons, Rex Ryan has run defenses that never once have fared worse than No. 7 in the NFL in total defense (total yards allowed per game).Normally I'd rely on a more advanced look at defensive efficiency, but this one is very telling because it in part takes into account what the offense is doing. If you have a below-average offense, as the Jets have had, it can often make defenses look even worse. Offenses that can't stay on the field leave defenses even more exposed, and the Jets went three-and-out on offense over 26 percent of the time last season. They ranked 32nd in that category the year before, 18th in 2010 and 22nd in 2009.Even going back to 2008,the Ravens were a below-average18th. And yet Ryan still manages to consistently put together defenses that will always keep teams competitive, regardless of what the offense provides.The Jets' new management inherited a salary cap mess and wasn't going to be able to dramatically upgrade the offensive personnel this offseason by shopping for top offensive talent (to the extent it even exists in free agency), nor was it going to be able to get talent to affect a dramatic shift from the draft, especially after St. Louis moved up in front of the Jets to No. 8 overall to take Tavon Austin. So the Jets opted to strengthen their biggest competitive advantage and got the best cornerback (Dee Milliner) and a defensive lineman (Sheldon Richardson) who would help a master schemer in Ryan do more on defense. Remember this: If anything has allowed Sanchez to claim the "winner" label in New York, it's been the defense, not his own play, because he simply has never been above average. This is a fact. And what the Jets did in Round 1, while it could be perceived as a detriment to the offense, actually will do the team plenty of good.In Round 2, Geno Smith presented the Jets with great value potential.
2. They maximized draft board value
The Jets had internal conversations about taking Smith at No. 13 overall before ultimately settling on Richardson. And while you can quibble about whether they should have taken an early-impact offensive threat such as tight end Tyler Eifert at that spot, we can all agree that by taking Smith at No. 39 overall, they'd won a pretty big hand of draft board poker. Regardless of what you think about Smith, the Jets smartly gauged that in a year without certain impact talent at QB, and due to depressed need, QBs would drop. Whether Smith is good or not, the low cost of getting him at No. 39 overall mitigated any risk. It was somewhat reminiscent of when the Bengals waited out a QB run of quarterbacks in 2010 and still got a player they really liked in Andy Dalton in Round 2.
3. They factored in their own offensive resources
Regardless of whether the Jets drafted a wide receiver in Round 1, they couldn't figure to get more impact from any wideout in 2013 than they'll get from a healthy Santonio Holmes. Holmes is no star, but he had 103 catches in his first two years in New York, and was at least on pace for 80 last season before he went down in Week 4. As I've said before, Stephen Hill's route tree in the Georgia Tech was a cactus, and he also figures to be improved after a year of frustrating seasoning in the NFL.You can argue that the Jets offense in 2013 should be better mostly because mathematically it couldn't get any worse, but you don't just draft based on statistical need -- you draft and acquire based on reasonable assumptions about gains you'll get from current personnel.
4. They made a reasonable cost/benefit decision
As I noted before, the previous Jets administration made so many quizzical decisions at QB from a cost/benefit standpoint, fans might not realize what a sensible one looks like. In taking Smith at No. 39, and having already upgraded the roster in a couple key spots, the Jets aren't paying for assumed performance from Smith -- they're paying very little for what could be a great deal of on-field value, even if it's merely insurance. Namath says they had bigger "needs," but no team assumes they'll get major first-year impact from a Round 2 pick. The 2012 draft provided a lot of early returns from Round 2, but only a third of those picks were consistent starters, and a number of those were at more fungible positions such as linebacker and along the offensive line, where players can be shifted around.Smith's ability to fill a need at QB isn't just reflected in the state of the 2013 roster. Choosing him is also reflected in the possible needs for 2014. Which brings us to a final point.
5. They drafted a player -- they didn't marry him
This is pretty simple: If, after a year of evaluation, and maybe even some starts, the Jets don't feel Smith is the starter of the future, so what? At that point, even in a worst-case scenario, they have a backup they aren't going to commit more than 1.5 percent of their salary cap to over the next four seasons, and they also have a low-cost QB commodity who could be dealt for future draft picks. If the season is a total disaster, and next offseason we're looking at a situation where Sanchez is no longer on the roster and Smith isn't the clear answer going forward, the Jets haven't put themselves in a situation where they can't either target a QB in free agency or once again in the draft. Options remain wide open.In a way, the selection of Smith reminds me of what the Lions faced in 2007 when they decided to draft Calvin Johnson. Smith and Johnson are by no means comparable talents, but consider the situation. The Lions had drafted Charles Rogers, Mike Williams and Roy Williams in previous years, and even the selection of Johnson seemed laughable. But it wasn't because of Johnson, it was because of the situation and team he was headed to. Johnson was a great prospect, but you had to assume the worst because of Detroit's absurd history with the position.Smith was a perfectly logical pick at his price point, and he goes to a team that, while perpetually dysfunctional at the position, really does need a QB like him to develop and is making reasonable personnel moves under a new decision-maker. And whether Smith succeeds or fails won't diminish that fact. That Week 7 reminder will be helpful to understand why.
The Jets underwent a major overhaul this offseason with new general manager John Idzik tearing up the roster and beginning a rebuilding project.
The biggest move was trading cornerback Darrelle Revis, the best player on the team, to the Buccaneers. But Idzik also let a bunch of the Jets own free agents leave — including longtime Jets Brandon Moore, Bryan Thomas, Dustin Keller and Shonn Greene.Idzik also jettisoned quarterback Tim Tebow after one disappointing year and got the team’s salary cap back in shape by releasing several veterans.Mark Sanchez remains, but the team has opened up a competition at quarterback and drafted Geno Smith in the second round to challenge Sanchez for the job.
Here is how the Jets fared this offseason :
New GM John Idzik had two first-round picks thanks to the Darrelle Revis trade. He used both on defense, taking cornerback Dee Milliner at No. 9 overall and defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson at No. 13. The biggest splash came in the second round when he selected Smith. Milliner and Richardson should be starters from Day 1, with QB Geno Smith and third-round guard Brian Winters possibly breaking into the lineup.
The story was about who left, not who came. Idzik basically let everyone walk. Some of the moves made sense, others were head scratchers. Letting go of tight end Dustin Keller (signed with the Dolphins) and safety Yeremiah Bell (Cardinals) were the most puzzling. The Jets have signed TE Kellen Winslow Jr., but really have not replaced the other spots.As for the additions, running back Mike Goodson, guard Willie Colon, safety Dawan Landry and linebacker Antwan Barnes should have the biggest impact.
Along with a new GM, the Jets have new coordinators in every phase. Dennis Thurman (defense) and Ben Kotwica (special teams) are longtime staff members who have been promoted. The biggest change is on offense where Marty Mornhinweg replaces Tony Sparano.Coach Rex Ryan expects Mornhinweg to bring a more aggressive, attacking offense to the Jets.New quarterbacks coach David Lee comes with Bill Parcells’ recommendation and the challenge of fixing Mark Sanchez and schooling Smith.Idzik has begun remaking the scouting staff and front office. His biggest hire is former Cardinals GM Rod Graves, who will now oversee the Jets’ personnel and scouting departments.
Receiver Santonio Holmes did not practice this spring and could start training camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list. The Jets are thin at receiver and need Holmes to return from foot surgery as his old self.Second-year receiver Stephen Hill has struggled to stay healthy. His development is key for the Jets and has been stunted with his time on the sideline.
We tied up our offseason program and mandatory minicamp. We thought it went pretty well. We introduced a lot of things over the last couple weeks, especially this last period of the offseason program where we got down to football brass tacks. We installed a lot, on purpose, filled their heads with a lot to think about the next five, six weeks before we go to camp. I felt like it went really well.
On if it has been a rough stretch for receivers dropping passes and if he's concerned...
It was. There’s a couple factors there I think. One, we have a new offensive system, practically the entire side of the ball, except for the receivers coach, the new coaches on the staff. So there’s a lot of newness that way in just the installation. We’re relatively young. And we had some soft-tissues type stuff, some minor stuff, that kept guys out, so it limited their reps a little bit. I think all things considered, there’s a lot going on. Like I said, we’ve filled their heads to the brim with that and you may miss a little time, some may miss a little time with a strain here or there, that factors in.
But is that a concern? That may be a little strong. It’s still early. We’re in the installation phases. There is an orientation of sorts to our offense for the young guys to the NFL. There are a lot of factors going on and we’ll just keep pushing forward.
On if the team plans to sign Kellen Winslow…
We’ll talk about that. What’s nice about minicamp environments is you get three days. Unlike when you bring veterans in or street guys in for free agent workouts, you may get them out on the field for 45 minutes, an hour. In minicamps we get three days with them and we’ll get to teach them some things and see how they apply it. We thought Kellen did a nice job given the fact that you get off a plane, you get into a meeting and a couple hours later you’re out on the field. I think all things considered, he did a pretty good job.
On the contract status of the three unsigned draft picks…
We obviously continue to talk that through. We’re not really going to comment on negotiations, but we would anticipate having everybody there ready for training camp.
On if he anticipates Santonio Holmes missing training camp and preseason or regular season games…
We’re just taking those things a week at a time for him. The next five, six weeks are going to be important for him. He’s going to be around here rehabilitating. He’s been very diligent about that. We’ll just see where that goes. Hopefully by the time we reach camp or into camp we’ll have a lot more information, that’s for sure. I think this will be good time for Tone to continue his rehab to take it down the home stretch.
On if he asked Holmes to stay in New Jersey to rehab at the facility after minicamp…
Actually that’s voluntary time. That’s up to Tone. He’s been diligent about it. It’s important to him. Obviously, it’s important to us, so it’s nice to have him around.
On if he was "taken aback" when David Garrard wasn’t physically able to play anymore…
I don’t know if it’s taken aback. It’s more when you have a player that’s been out, he had the knee injury and coming off that, hadn’t had a chance to practice for any length of time, hadn’t been through game situations, so really hadn’t tested it. We both knew, we meaning the Jets and David, we both knew that there was the unknown there.
But he felt good, we felt good about it. We really didn’t get into full mode, but by the time we got into more football-type activities, then it started to surface. I don’t know that we were surprised. We were both hopeful. But that’s one of those things where you take a shot at it, you go through the paces and see where it leaves you.
On if he was aware of the severity of Garrard’s knee injury when they signed him…
Well, I didn’t sleep in a Holiday Inn [Express] last night, so I’m not going to play doctor [joking]. Seriously, though, we obviously do our homework whenever we sign players. Just generally speaking, we’ll go through the [medical] reports, we’ll go through durability concerns, we’ll go through everything, so yeah, we had a pretty thorough knowledge of what was going on.
On if they have thought about bringing in a veteran quarterback…
We just got through three pretty intensive days of competition. We’ll look at it at every position every single day. I know you guys have heard it before, but in order to improve, and right now we feel we have a pretty healthy competition going on at that position.
On the status of Mike Goodson…
Mike Goodson is a New York Jet. So we’re continuing to develop him like all the others.
On Goodson’s legal situation and if he can guarantee he will make the team…
There are no guarantees in life. There are certainly no guarantees in the National Football League. But the legal situation, we'll just let it run its course and we'll respond accordingly. The same way with the league, the same way with the club. We’ll let things take their course.
On if the team was aware of Goodson’s background when he was signed…
We’re not going to comment on anything specific to any player. I would say, just generally speaking, that we do our homework. We do our homework with respect to medical concerns, we do our homework in respect to background checks and all that. We’re in a human business, so when you’re dealing with that there’s unpredictability. There’s always going to be a certain degree of risk or unpredictability with what we do. And we like to believe, based on the information we gather, we take calculated chances with players, with people and with employees, at the end of the day we’re going to get the type of people that we feel can help us.
On the Garrard and Goodson signings seeming like bad risks from the outside…
That’s from the outside. From the inside, we have a lot more information and we continue to gather that information. Some of those things will work out and some won’t. You just keep pushing, you keep prodding, you keep exploring for any opportunity you get to improve the club. So if that means signing a player of David Garrard’s ilk, bringing him in and giving him a chance and it’s a good chance for us, we’re going to take it, and we’ll see where it leads. I know there’s perception from the outside. We know what goes on from the inside and we’re good with it.
On the hiring of Rod Graves…
It’s exciting. I’ve know Rod since actually my teenage years. We were ballboys together back in the old Philadelphia Eagle days. We’ve known each other for a long, long time. We’ve known each other in different aspects, in scouting. He actually came through when I was coaching and I knew him back then. He was scouting a few of our players. I’ve known him side by side and in personnel circles, and of course in our time together in Arizona. I’m grateful to have him on board.
On the reversal of roles with Graves since he worked under Graves when Graves was the Arizona GM…
Yeah, role reversal, but I think we’re all teammates. That’s the way we look at it, that’s the way we looked at it in Arizona, that’s the way we look at it here. We’re all together. It’s nice to be teammates with Rod.
On contract negotiations with Geno Smith…
Well, again, we’re not going to get into any contract discussions or negotiations. You know, nothing is standing in the way, but we won’t get into any specifics of what we talk about.
On his impressions of head coach Rex Ryan…
He’s been fantastic. From day one, I kind of jumped in midstride and we started hiring coaches together, interviewing and hiring coaches together, going to free agency, evaluating our roster, draft, postdraft signings, minicamps, now we’re getting into more football type things. In a very condensed period of time, we’ve had a lot of varied experience together and it’s all been good. He’s a joy to work with. As you guys know, he makes it fun. I think he’s been energized. He’s a great teacher. My observations have been that he’s been energized by the whole thing and certainly I have, too. It’s been a joy to work with him.
On his expectations for this season…
Our expectations are to not look too far ahead. I think there is a danger in that. We’re just going to take it a meeting at a time, a practice at a time, a day at a time, a week at a time, and keep pushing it forward and getting better. And I believe that’s happened this offseason. I think our fans have seen that this offseason, some of the moves we’ve made, going through the draft, the postdraft, now getting into minicamp practices. You’re going to have your learning curve, so to speak. I think we’ve made real progress. The team certainly feels it. We feel it. I trust that our fans will see that, too.
On if the team is better than the one he inherited…
Well, that’s tough. I’ve only been here five, six months. I don’t know if it’s a continuum of sorts. I just look at the team as we sit today. We’re pleased with the direction we’re headed.
Tanner Purdum signed a two-year contract with the Jets in March. He's been the team's' steady long snapper since 2010.
Under new GM John Idzik, the Jets took an NBC approach in the offseason -- no big contracts.They made little or no effort to re-sign any of their own big-ticket free agents. In fact, Tanner Purdum -- the long snapper, for crying out loud -- was the only veteran to receive a multiyear contract to re-sign. What does that tell you?
The Jets spent modestly in free agency, doling out several one-year deals. Even the multi-year deals were relatively small, allowing them to flexibility to cut players after one year with no serious cap ramifications. By 2014, their salary-cap house should be in order. The only difficult-to-cut contracts in '14 will be C Nick Mangold and LT D'Brickashaw Ferguson, neither of whom should be in jeopardy, anyway.
A breakdown of how they spent this offseason :
FREE AGENTS RE-SIGNED
POS PLAYER CONTRACT
RT Austin Howard 1 year/$2.03 million
TE Jeff Cumberland 1 year/$1.32 million
LS Tanner Purdum 2 years/$1.49 million
LB Calvin Pace 1 year/$1.05 million
PK Nick Folk 1 year/$780,000
FB Lex Hilliard 1 year/$780,000
LB Josh Mauga 1 year/$630,000
Total amount of contracts: $8.08 million
Total amount of guaranteed money: $310,000
POS PLAYER CONTRACT
RB Chris Ivory 3 years/$6.0 million
Total amount of contracts: $6.0 million
Total amount of guaranteed money: $2.25 million
FREE AGENTS SIGNED
POS PLAYER CONTRACT
RB Mike Goodson 3 years/$6.9 million
LB Antwan Barnes 3 years/$4.05 million
S Dawan Landry 2 years/$3.0 million
G Willie Colon 1 year/$1.16 million
QB David Garrard 1 year/$1.1 million (retired)
G Stephen Peterman 1 year/$905,000
DT Antonio Garay 1 year/$905,000
TE Kellen Winslow 1 year/$840,000
WR Ben Obonamu 1 year/$715,000
Total amount of contracts: $19.58 million
Total amount of guaranteed money: $2.94 million
CB Dee Milliner (1a) 4 years/$12.66 million*
DT Sheldon Richardson (1b) 4 years/$10.05 million*
QB Geno Smith (2) 4 years/$5.02 million*
G Brian Winters (3) 4 years/$2.90 million
OT Oday Aboushi (5) 4 years/$2.36 million
G William Campbell (6) 4 years/$2.27 million
FB Tommy Bohanon (7) 4 years/$2.22 million
*Unsigned. Projected contract
Total amount of contracts: $37.48 million
Total amount of guaranteed money: $26.21 million