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Jets trade for Jenkins, unload Vilma
By Sean M. Deegan
Publisher, Jets Insider.com
February 29th, 2008
The Jets hope DT Kris Jenkins will shore up the middle of their defense.
The Jets hope DT Kris Jenkins will shore up the middle of their defense.
And Theyíre Off!

The Jets wasted no time wheeling and dealing as they come out of the free agency starting gate with two significant deals in acquiring Panthers DT Kris Jenkins and unloading LB Jonathan Vilma. The team is also reportedly close to locking up crown jewel free agent G, Alan Faneca.

Not long after the clock struck midnight the Jets GM/Head Coach duo now known as Tan-Gini pulled the trigger on bringing the massive Jenkins to NY for a reported third and fifth round draft pick in this yearís draft. The deal was confirmed by more than one source this morning. The 28 year old Jenkins (6í4Ē Ė 340 Lbs) is hopefully the prototypical noseguard that the team has been seeking since Coach Eric Mangini took over and switched to the 3-4 defensive scheme.

The acquisition of Jenkins clouds the future of Dewayne Robertson who the Jets are trying to unload. If the Jets canít get any value for Robertson, itís possible he may stay and be moved to defensive end. This morning, the NFL network was reporting that the Jenkins signed a new contract with the Jets for five years worth $35MM and $20MM guaranteed.

More than one source is reporting this morning that the Jets are sending former Pro Bowl LB Jonathan Vilma to New Orleans for a conditional 2009 draft pick depending on how much time he plays next season. Vilma is coming off knee surgery this past season but is expected to be 100% by training camp. The pick reportedly could range from a 2nd rounder to a 4th. Seems like a steal for the Saints if Vilma plays even close to his potential. This deal has not been officially announced but should be done sometime today.

The consensus among most media outlets this morning is that the Jets are in the best position to sign Steelers guard Alan Faneca and are willing to offer him a four year deal in excess of $8MM per season. However, acquiring Faneca may not be immediate as itís reported that he may visit several teams including Arizona, St Louis and San Francisco before making a decision. The Jets hope to get him in Hempstead as early as this weekend. Itís ironic that the team is so anxious to pour money on Faneca after being so cheap last season with Pete Kendall.

The team is also reportedly looking to sign Lions OL Damien Woody. Mangini is familiar with Woody from his days as a Patriot and feels that he can make the permanent switch from guard to tackle to fill the slot that was taken by Anthony Clement last year. He was switched to tackle last year by Detroit and played very well, not allowing a sack in five starts.

Looks like the Jets are out of the Asante Samuel contest before it even started as reports this morning indicate he will sign with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Please check back to JI often for all the latest breaking free agency news and rumors!

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