Patriots Sign Shaun Ellis

Can’t say I’m happy about this.  I really wanted Shaun back, but I do understand that it would have been a part-time role.  It probably wasn’t worth giving Ellis anything more than a minimum contract, but It’s a little disappointing to see him go to the Pats.

I don’t expect Ellis to record more than four sacks this season, but he’ll still be a pretty good player for New England.  He’s definitely on the decline, but it’s going to be a little tough seeing him on a different team, especially on a rival team.

It’s now time for Muhammad Wilkerson to step up.  I have no doubts that this guy can put up at least five sacks this season.  If he can get to the quarterback and help stop the run, Wilkerson could be the next Shaun Ellis for the Jets.

With Wilkerson, Kenrick Ellis, Ropati Pitoitua, Mike Devito, and of course Sione Pouha, the Jets will be fine on the defensive line.  I’ve also heard a lot of good things about Marcus Dixon, who has a shot to earn playing time in camp and in the preseason.

Losing Ellis is disappointing, but it was time to move on.


Jets Training Camp News (August 5, 2011)

– Jerricho Cotchery has officially been released by the Jets.  Reports now say that it’s Cotchery that wanted to leave, not the other way around.  Jerricho apparently requested a trade or to be released back in February.

– Derrick Mason hasn’t been signed yet, which comes as a huge surprise.  If he doesn’t come here, the Jets need to find a third receiver.  Jeremy Kerley has potential, but he is just an unproven rookie as of now.

– The Patriots signed Mark Anderson today.  Hopefully this means Shaun Ellis will stay away from New England.  I will be very disappointed if the Jets let Ellis go.

– James Ihedigbo still hasn’t been signed.  With Brodney Pool returning, you have to wonder if the Jets will re-sign Ihedigbo.  He definitely still has a role on this team on special teams and as an occasional sub-in at safety.

– Former Giants tight end Kevin Boss signed with the Raiders today.  His four-year, $16 million deal was way too much for the Jets to offer.

Jets Not Interested in Haynesworth

According to NBC Sports, the Jets are not likely to persue Albert Haynesworth after losing Kris Jenkins for the year.  This is a great move in my opinion.  There is no reason to bring in an overpaid piece of trash like Haynesworth.  He is nothing more than a clubhouse cancer right now.  The Jets can survive with Devito, Pouha, and Ellis.


2010 NFL Offseason in Review

With the NFL season about to start in less than two weeks, let’s look back on this year’s historic offseason.

After a 5-0 start, the Giants seemed to have had booked a ticket to the 2009 playoffs. Unfortunately, the Giants would collapse and finish 8-8 on the season. The Giants’ defense was awful down the stretch, allowing over forty points in three of their last four games. The Giants would close out their old stadium in week 16 with a demoralizing 41-9 loss against Matt Moore and the Panthers. The Giants would address one of their needs immediately by signing safety Antrel Rolle to a five-year, $37 million contract. The Giants would add even more depth at safety by signing former Seahawk Deon Grant to a one-year deal.

With the 15th pick in the draft, the Giants decided to pick the best player available on their board. That player was Jason Pierre-Paul, defensive end out of South Florida. Pierre-Paul will be a work in progress, but he could eventually become a solid building piece. In the second round, the Giants selected defensive tackle Linval Joseph out of East Carolina. Picking another defensive lineman was a controversial move by the Giants. The Giants would draft safety Chad Jones out of LSU in round three to close out day two of the NFL Draft. The Giants finally addressed their middle linebacker situation in round four. Phillip Dillard, middle linebacker out of Nebraska, was selected by the Giants with the 115th overall pick. The problem with this pick is that most analysts don’t project him to be a starter. The Giants would take guard Mitch Petrus in the fifth round, before drafting outside linebacker Adrian Tracy in the sixth round. Giants finished off their draft by taking punter Matt Dodge, who could replace the retired Jeff Feagles.

The Giants’ off-season will ultimately be looked at as a success or failure, depending on their success this season. The front office didn’t address their starting middle linebacker situation as well as they could have, completely ignored their offense, and drafted for potential as opposed to definite talent. With an uncapped season, this certainly wasn’t the year to be cheap. Unfortunately, the Giants’ brass was rather passive when it came to the free agent market. The Giants should win anywhere from eight to twelve games this season. If their defense can hold up, expect a return to the playoffs.

Despite a 3-0 start, the Jets would end up falling to 7-7 by Week 15. Thanks to a great amount of luck, the Jets were able to leap over other teams in the standings and sneak their way into the playoffs. The Jets would dominate Cincinnati in the first round of the playoffs and advance to the AFC Divisional Round. The following week, the Jets pulled off an amazing upset against the Chargers to advance to the AFC Championship Game. The Jets would finally be eliminated by the Colts, despite having a lead at halftime.

Most people expected the Jets to have a quiet off-season. Because of the “final eight” rule, the Jets were severely limited on what they could do in the free agent market. The first move for the Jets was to bringing back fullback Tony Richardson on a one-year deal. Kicker Nick Folk and safety Brodney Pool were also signed early in the off-season. I would have personally kept kicker Jay Feely around for one more year, as Folk‘s kicking could become problematic. However, Pool is the perfect free safety for Rex Ryan’s defense. Before the Pool signing, the Jets traded safety Kerry Rhodes to the Cardinals for a fourth round pick in this year’s draft and a seventh round pick in next year’s draft.

The Jets made a huge trade in early March that brought in cornerback Antonio Cromartie. Cromartie is one of the best “big play” corners in the league. With Darelle Revis patrolling the other side of the field, Cromartie will be tested more than he ever has before. This should lead to the opportunity to intercept more passes.

Gang Green’s other big trade this off-season was the Santonio Holmes trade. The Jets acquired former Super Bowl MVP Santonio Holmes for a fifth round draft pick. This trade was an absolute steal, as Holmes is widely considered a top-15 wide receiver. Unfortunately, Holmes will be suspended the first four games of the season for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

Perhaps the biggest signing of the off-season for the Jets was the signing of running back Ladainian Tomlinson. Ladainian isn’t the player he once was, but he is still an above average back. Since the Jets had one of the best offensive lines in football last year, look for Tomlinson’s production to increase. The Tomlinson signing led to the departure of Thomas Jones. This was a controversial move, but I feel it was the right one to make. Jones has very little left in the tank and has been overused for many years. Last year in the playoffs, Jones was falling down after the slightest contact. He may have had more production last year than Tomlinson, but Jones didn’t have to deal with the poor run-blocking offensive line that Tomlinson did.

The Jets made the most controversial signing of their off-season by bringing in former Dolphin linebacker Jason Taylor. Despite his talent, many Jets fans still have bitter feelings towards him. Taylor was a long time villain in Jets history. He was often being seen taunting Jets fans during games and making obscene comments about the franchise itself. Jason once said, “The Jets fans take the ’cl’ out of class.” The controversial linebacker will be a pass rusher at the 3-4 outside linebacker position. This should add a new dimension to the Jets’ defense.

The Jets had a risky, yet productive draft. In the first round, the Jets selected New Jersey native Kyle Wilson with the 29th overall pick. Wilson is the perfect nickel backer for Rex Ryan’s defense. If Wilson can cover slot wide receivers, Rex Ryan would gain the ability to blitz more often without worrying about allowing a big play. Wilson is also an amazing punt returner.

The Jets selected tackle/guard Vladimir Ducasse in the second round. Ducasse is projected to be a right tackle, but this year he will play left guard. Ducasse has shown the ability to pull block successfully, even for a 330 pound monster. With this pick, Alan Faneca became expendable. Faneca, the nine-time Pro Bowl selection, was released by the Jets during day three of the draft. Despite being a solid run-blocker, Faneca was awful in pass protection last season.

The Jets didn’t have a third round pick, but in the fourth round the Jets traded up to select running back Joe McKnight. McKnight is considered to have a similar skill set to Leon Washington, who was traded with a seventh round pick to the Seahawks for a fifth round pick. The Jets didn’t get much back for Leon, who is recovering from a fractured fibula. McKnight, Greene, and Tomlinson should easily make up for the loss of Leon. The Jets used their last pick to draft fullback John Conner, the likely replacement for Tony Richardson after this season.

Overall, it was an amazing off-season for the Jets. Despite having numerous restrictions against them, the Jets got younger, cheaper, and better during this off-season. Mike Tannenbaum and owner Woody Johnson once again proved that the Jets have one of the best front offices in all of sports. If the Jets can stay healthy and effective, I don’t see why they can’t make a run for a championship. I wouldn’t count on a Jets-Giants Super Bowl, but anything is possible.

More Revis Reports Keep Coming

ESPN and various other media outlets are now picking up the story that we broke last night.  Hopefully the Jets and/or Revis will confirm the deal today.  I wouldn’t even rule out it being addressed on Hard Knocks tonight.

So what does this all mean long-term for the Jets.  If Revis truly is signed, the Jets now will turn their attention to five impending free agents.  I’ll tell you what Mike Tannenbaum should do with each of them.

David Harris – The fourth member of the core four will probably be re-signed in the offseason.  If the Jets can re-sign him, they will be in good shape.  Hopefully the Revis contract won’t handcuff the Jets in signing Harris.

Shaun Ellis – Let him walk.  He is getting older and will probably get a multi-year deal somewhere else.  As long as it’s not here, I will be happy for him.

Braylon Edwards – The Jets can probably only re-sign Edwards or Holmes.  I would see how Edwards performs this year, see what type of deal he wants, and make a decision from there.  I would probably rather have Holmes back right now, but a whole season could change that.

Santonio Holmes – See above.

Antonio Cromartie – I’d say he should be re-signed, but a poor performance this year could change that.  If Kyle Wilson becomes a bust, Cromartie will more than likely be re-signed.  If Wilson becomes a great player and Cromartie wants a huge deal, let him walk.