So, the free agency period has begun. I must admit, the whole thing makes my head spin. Thank you to MG and JW for clearing up some a few nagging questions I had about some of the rules.
Following the release of Thomas Jones that was announced earlier in the week, the first big move of the day, although not at all unexpected, was the release of Lito Sheppard. He's truly a great guy, but had a couple of really bad games that, together with the money factor, just didn't bode well for him.
I would think the Jets will be looking long and hard at first-round cornerbacks come April.
The team has tendered a bunch of players. I'm just going to give you the list, along with the compensation that the Jets would receive in the 2010 Draft if they decide not to match another team's offer and let that player go. They have seven days to make the decision once an offer is made:
Leon Washington - 2nd round pick
Braylon Edwards - 1st and 3rd round picks
Kellen Edwards - 3rd round pick (this is due to the fact that the Jets already have Leon equal to a 2nd round.
Brad Smith - 2nd round pick
Wayne Hunter - 3rd round pick
Eric Smith - 3rd round pick
Drew Coleman - 6th round pick
James Ihedigbo - Right of first refusal. (If another team gives him an offer that the Jets don't want to match, the Jets will not receive any compensation for him.)
The free agents are:
Unrestricted free agents are:
The Jets can sign as many restricted free agents as they like. The rules for unrestricted free agents as far as the Jets are concerned, are that they can't sign one unless they lose one.
Hard to say at this point how everything is going to go. I know the big question is Leon Washington and his agent put his chances at returning to the Jets as 50-50. We'll see. That would be a big loss.
The Jets signed long snapper Tanner Purdham a couple of weeks ago, so that could signal the end of the James Dearth era, but he's beaten out other guys before.
I would expect to see Tony Richardson return.
Nick Folk, who most recently kicked for the Cowboys was recently signed, but I think this is more for mini-camp and training camp competition for Feely.
The talk about Larry Izzo after he was placed on Injured Reserve with a neck injury was that he might retire. Nothing has been said about that one way or the other at this point. Special Teams coach Mike Westhoff loves Izzo, and rightly so, the guy has had an outstanding career, but it might be time for him to be done.
I'll keep you posted as things happen or as I hear them.