On this day where the free agency period begins, and the Jets begin it with at least $40 million in cap space to spend away, I wanted to take a look back and give Santonio Holmes a send off. For anyone who doesn’t know by now, he was released yesterday by the team.
Many people are only going to remember the bad times, and the turmoil. But we need to remember that it wasn’t all turmoil. There were some good times with him in a Jets’ uniform as well.
He came to the Jets after winning a Super Bowl MVP with the Pittsburgh Steelers, acquired for a fifth round pick. He came in and did have chemistry with Mark Sanchez early, including back to back game winning touchdowns against the Cleveland Browns and the Houston Texans. In that stretch, he caught four touchdown passes in a three-game span. He scored six times to go along with 52 receptions for 746 yards, helping the Jets to a wild card berth and an 11-5 record.
Here is the game-winner from the Texans game:
And the Browns game:
Don’t forget his performance against the Patriots in the divisional playoff that year either. Nobody was saying get rid of him when THIS play took over our TV sets:
But it all began to fall apart in the infamous “Miami Meltdown”. He was a distraction for a lot of that season, and then finally, had to be taken off the field for the most important drive of the season, the final one in Miami. We all knew this was the beginning of the end for Santonio as a member of the Jets.
The Lisfranc injury derailed in 2012 campaign, and he never really got things going again in 2013, although he did average nearly 20 yards per reception when he was on the field. His teammates gave him a great deal of credit for being a mentor to them as well, so, behind the scenes, he did still try to help the team.
Don’t discount Santonio the man either. He did some great work with his “Third and Long” foundation while he was in town, including his recent partnership for events with our buddies at uSTADIUM. Personally I saw him take care of a player that got hurt at his flag football tournament, and treat everyone that wanted to spend time around him with respect and dignity. That HAS to count for something.
Was his time over in New York? Yes, it was. We all knew that. But there is no need to continuously kick Santonio Holmes on his way out the door. Let’s move on and see what happens with the team starting today.