1) Vontae Davis and other free agent misses in the cornerback market – The Jets, supposedly, had a deal in place with Vontae Davis to replace Antonio Cromartie in the secondary that Davis backed out of when the Colts upped their offer. This has left the Jets without a “number 1″ corner. They have missed out on a number of replacements because the cornerback market has rebounded in a big way this year salary-wise. They have missed out on Davis, Aqib Talib, Alterraun Verner, Darrelle Revis, Captain Munnerlyn, Walter Thurmond, and Brandon Browner for various reasons. Some were because of money (Talib, Davis), some about fit in the scheme (Verner), some were slot guys that might not have worked outside (Munnerlyn, Thurmond), one is one suspension from being out of the league for a year or more (Browner) and the other one is Revis. The two remaining free agent possibilities are cousins. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie visited the Jets Friday night and Saturday before departing to the Giants and Antonio Cromartie has negotiated with Arizona but a deal is not close. Rich Cimini reports that Antonio Cromartie wants to come back but John Idzik is hesitant to give a multi-year deal to a player 30 years old, coming off of a leg injury, and a bad year. If the Jets miss out on the two cousins then they will have to either find a trade partner for a veteran corner or go back to the draft to replace Cromartie. Neither option would be a disaster but finding a veteran free agent answer is preferable.
2) That safety and guard market went fast – Within the first day of free agency all of the top free agent safeties, sans Chris Clemons, with most garnering big contracts. Jairus Byrd got over $50 million dollars from the Saints with $28 million in guarantees, TJ Ward went to the Broncos, Donte Whitner signed with Cleveland for around $7 million/year, Antoine Bethea, Mike Mitchell and Malcolm Jenkins all got long-term deals on Day 1 of free agency. Chris Clemons is a good coverage safety that would upgrade a deficiency of the Jets secondary but there is always the draft as well. At guard it was assumed that the Jets would replace Willie Colon with Kansas City’s Jon Asamoah but Asamoah then signed with Atlanta instead for $4.5 million/year. The remaining guards would go quickly with Geoff Schwartz going to the Giants, Zane Beadles to Jacksonville and Chad Rinehart to San Diego. Thankfully the Jets have a fallback option that wants to be a Jet in Willie Colon and expect a one year deal to get done when he recovers from his torn biceps.
3) That media blackout also keeps fans in the dark – The fact that the Jets don’t have leaks anymore means that the fans don’t have any information either and have to rely on speculation or pure guess-work by the media. If the Jets lose out on the player there is no information out there to say well at least we still have interest in this guy. Hearing no news makes the impatient think that no one is working which leads to angst. The media feeds into the angst as they send tweets designed to troll Jets fans into more negative thinking. It is a bad cycle but unfortunately a necessary one to make sure that everyone inside the building is on the same page, and that the only people who know the Jets business are the Jets.