Aug 16, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; New York Jets wide receiverJacoby Ford
(19) returns a kick off during the second quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
We’ve all heard of the “value signings” that John Idzik chose to make, in avoiding the big name, big splash, big talent free agency market. We were told these signings were diamonds in the rough, calculated risks, which would ultimately improve the overall talent of the team as the whole. I went on the record then that I had little faith in these moves, and said at the time that John Idzik would either look like a genius or a dunce, depending on how these signings worked out. Jacoby Ford was the first to go, making Idzik look just a little silly. Add to that the injuries and inconsistent play of Dimitri Patterson, and his mysterious disappearance before the Giants game, and Mr. Idzik appears to have his dunce cap sitting in the corner waiting for him.
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Jacoby Ford’s signing wasn’t a “value signing” from the get go, mainly because he isn’t very valuable, it was a gamble, plain and simple. Ford had never been any sort of consistent receiver in his NFL career with the Raiders. His injuries were well documented, and his lack of production in Oakland forced the Raiders to give up on their speedy receiver and allow him to enter the free agency market. In step the Jets, who signed him on the cheap, seemingly expecting him to somehow miraculously turn his career around. Ford’s totals in Oakland, 57 receptions for 848 yards over four years makes one wonder what they were thinking with this signing. Many claimed they brought him over to return kicks, but with a large draft class and roster spots being at a premium, it was highly unlikely they signed him solely to return kicks. As a side note, he hasn’t had the greatest production as a returner since 2010 either, when he lit up the league with 53 returns for 1,280 yards and a 101 yd TD. Last season he managed just 11 returns for 253 yards.
He continued his poor performances in camp this year, which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Early on he struggled getting open, and when he did beat his guy, he struggled to catch the ball. Much like Stephen Hill, he has the speed and size to produce and flourish at the position, but could never quite put it together. In three preseason games this year for the Jets he posted just three receptions for 19 yds, and was buried deep down on the Jets’ depth chart. He was then used to return kicks, seemingly as a way to justify the signing and hoping to find some value to the team. After a poor performance against the Giants in the return game, the Jets finally cut their losses, letting him go in the first round of cuts this summer.
Goodbye Jacoby Ford. Its hard to imagine that many Jet fans will miss him. While he doesn’t impact the cap space for the Jets to any degree, just 650,000 dollars was guaranteed in his sort term contract, he remains a prime example of why these type of “value signings” don’t offer much. Considering the Dimitri Patterson fiasco of last weekend, his lack of production and his long list of injuries, he might very well be the next victim of the cuts. Signing Ford was a huge mistake, it was unproductive and brought no value. John Idzik is looking more and more like a dunce sitting in the corner.
Now you know how I feel about the Jacoby Ford signing. I say good riddance! What do you think? Let me know!