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Thread: Chris Mortenson:Leinart could be option for '06

  1. #1
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    May 1999

    Chris Mortenson:Leinart could be option for '06

    The dilemma for the New York Jets is more crystal clear than the foggy future of Chad Pennington.

    Do you plan that future without Chad Pennington?

    Of course you do. You always contemplate worst-case scenarios, so put on your thinking cap.

    The most popular and exciting option for Jets' fans would be to borrow the NFL draft playbook from New York Giants general manager Ernie Accorsi.

    Next April, the Jets have to find a way to land Matt Leinart, the Heisman Trophy winner from USC.

    It won't be easy, unless they tank it badly enough to earn the No. 1 pick. It's too early, with so many uncertainties, to project the top five picks in the next draft. I tried and came up with something like this: 1. Arizona Cardinals, 2. Oakland Raiders, 3. Tennessee Titans, 4. Jets, 5. San Francisco 49ers. (Remember, we're talking about worst-case scenarios).

    The Jets, if they pick fourth, would be in the same slot as the Giants in '04 when Accorsi paid the freight for Eli Manning in a dramatic trade with the San Diego Chargers.

    The hurdles in landing Leinart would be similar to what the Giants faced, if the '06 projections are accurate (big if there). The team picking first is in need of a franchise quarterback, too.

    The Cardinals seemingly would not pass on Leinart, not with their talented receiving corps and especially not with a new stadium about to open.

    The Raiders will jettison Kerry Collins if his win-loss record as a starter (now 3-13) doesn't improve. But they do have a promising young QB in Andrew Walter and Al Davis might be very tempted by Leinart's teammate, the versatile Reggie Bush -- assuming Bush turns pro after his junior season.

    The Titans have Steve McNair and they love backup Billy Volek. They also have offensive coordinator Norm Chow, who drew it up for Leinart's Heisman campaign in '04.

    So, it would take considerable persuasion via the trade market to make the leap to No. 1. It would help if there were other attractive quarterback options as there were in '04 with Philip Rivers and Ben Roethlisberger also available. It's possible that Vanderbilt's Jay Cutler and Alabama's Brodie Croyle get fashionably hot for the '06 draft.

    Let's consider the alternatives, even some good ones:

    Billy Volek, Titans: He had one of the amazing footnotes that went relatively unnoticed in 2004. In his first nine NFL starts, no quarterback in league history has thrown for more yards (2,591) than Volek did for Titans offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger, who is now running the Jets' O.

    Patrick Ramsey, Washington Redskins: Even if the Redskins are playing hardball, he surely will be moved or released prior to the '06 season.

    Rivers or Drew Brees, Chargers One of them will be available.

  2. #2
    Hall Of Fame
    Charter JI Member

    Join Date
    May 1999
    L.I. NY (where the Jets used to be from)
    Two words regarding Leinart, Rivers, Brees

    Salary Cap.

    Mort is a nitwit.

  3. #3
    All League
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Austin, TX
    THe Jets will bring in a QB i can guarantee you that, they will work around the cap stuff. I also believe that Rivers only counts for 650k or something like that towards the cap next year. I believe Ham knows the details about that .

  4. #4

    yea piper his cap number is very resonable the next two yrs

    i believe its 650 next yr and 1.3 the yr after..........def doable.........but i still dont believe we should go with rivers im not a fan of his

  5. #5 Legend
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    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    I'd be ecstatic with either Rivers or Leinart.

    Volek isn't even a remote possibility IMO. Because of McNair's injury history and age, I'd bet that Tenn. would cut McNair before they'd trade away Volek. They're in major rebuilding mode anyways - Volek is a better fit for their future plans.


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