Sunday, March 14, 2010

Free Agency update

Free agency continues to pick up steam as the Jets sign LaDainian Tomlinson. The future Hall-of-Fame running back, drafted in 2001 by the San Diego Chargers had started and played in all but one game in his career, up until 2009 when injuries sidelined him for two games.

In 2006 Tomlinson was named league MVP.

Although Tomlinson will serve as a back-up to Shonn Greene, the team clearly expects a significant contribution from him. In addition, as one Jets player told me, "Tomlinson is a team-first guy. Thomas Jones was a me-first guy."

The Jets have now shored up a couple of positions with the addition of Tomlinson and his former San Diego teammate, cornerback Antonio Cromartie.

After cutting Lito Sheppard and Donald Strickland, I would expect to see the Jets target another corner in the Draft. I would think they would be looking at wide receivers too.

Someone to keep an eye on - Alan Faneca. The 12-year veteran is getting close to the end of his career and he has an enormous contract. If Faneca doesn't decide to retire in the next few weeks, the Jets could look to trade him around the Draft. Offensive lineman Rob Turner could likely transition easily in the left guard spot, especially given the fact that the other four linemen are all returning. However, he would probably have to compete with Matt Slauson for the job.

Odds and ends - in addition to Kerry Rhodes being traded to the Cardinals, and free agent WR/ST Wallace Wright signing with the Panthers, LB Marques Murrell, also a free agent who played mostly on special teams has signed with the Patriots.

Nothing new on the James Dearth or Leon Washington fronts.

The really big news of the day (pun intended), is the fact that Rex Ryan underwent lap-band surgery yesterday. He has tried a variety of ways to lose weight in the past, including starting a liquid diet on the first day of training camp last year (because he apparently needed a bigger challenge than simply his first training camp as a head coach). I'm sure Ryan will be the first one to provide regular updates on the procedure and the specifics of his weight loss.

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