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Jets Sign First Free Agent…More To Follow?

By Sean M. Deegan
Publisher, Jets
March 14th, 2006
Former Pats LB Matt Chatham is a good fit for the Jets new 3-4 defensive scheme.
Former Pats LB Matt Chatham is a good fit for the Jets new 3-4 defensive scheme.
The Jets made their first official splash in free agency last night by signing former Patriots utility LB Matt Chatham. According to several sources some more prominent names could follow shortly.

Although the signing of Chatham has not been officially announced by the Jets, the move has been confirmed by the six year veteran’s agent. Chatham’s deal is reportedly a three year pact with lots of incentives.

Chatham (6’4”- 250) had spent his entire career with the Patriots and with only six starts, was used mostly on special teams. He will reportedly get an opportunity to compete as a starter for the Jets. His size and athleticism are a good fit for the Jets switch to a 3-4 defense.

The next focus for the Jets will likely be at QB where it looks like it’s come down to former Bengal Jon Kitna or Washington’s Patrick Ramsey to be competing with Chad Pennington this upcoming season.

Kitna, 33, who is an unrestricted free agent and reportedly the Jets first choice, spent yesterday in Hempstead with Jets officials and reportedly left with an offer from the team. He’s mulling his options.

Ramsey, who is still property of the Redskins but has been given permission to seek a trade, met with the team last week and reportedly had a good session with the coaches. Sources have confirmed that the Redskins are looking for a 4th or 5th round pick for compensation but the Jets have only yet offered a 7th rounder for the four year player from Tulane. If negotiations with Kinta break down, look for the Jets to up their offer.

According to NY Post/Jets writer Mark Cannizzarro, the team also met yesterday with 35 year old Steelers FA DE Kimo Von Oelhoffen and Cowboys TE Dan Campbell. The Jets are looking to add depth at DE due to the imminent departure of John Abraham. Also, by not tendering TE Chris Baker who is now a free agent, the team is looking to add another TE. Baker still could be signed if no other team is looking to pay up for the inconsistent 4 year player.

Speaking of Abraham, he’s on a free agency tour, visiting Denver, Detroit, Washington and Cleveland with the Broncos reportedly as the leading contender as a trade destination. No offers have been made as of yet. Abraham is reportedly looking for a contract that will guarantee him at least 18-20 million dollars.

Former Jets T Jason Fabini met with Tampa Bay yesterday and could get an offer.

Check back to Jets often, for all the latest NY Jets news and rumors.

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