Jets Fans: Stop The Pity Party


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Do you remember December 30th 2007? I do. I was sitting in the pouring rain watching the 3-12 New York Jets play the 4-11 Kansas City Chiefs. The Jets won the game 13-10. I left the stadium frustrated because we hurt our draft position, ultimately falling to number six where the team would select Vernon Gholston. Our quarterback of the future, Kellen Clemens, had just played one of his better games of the 2007 season: 13/25, 115 yards, TD. Our newly signed starting running back, Thomas Jones, scored his second touchdown of the season. The offensive line was in shambles. The defense prominently featured players like Dewayne Robertson, Victor Hobson, David Barrett, and Erik Coleman.

Fast forward to January 20th, 2008. The New York Giants upset the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game, sending the Jets in-stadium rivals to face their division rivals, the New England Patriots (coming off a perfect regular season) in the Super Bowl. The Giants and Patriots went on to play one of the most memorable championship games in league history, while the Jets wallowed in complete and utter irrelevancy.

Do you remember those days? They weren’t too long ago. Do you remember gearing up for a broken down Chad Pennington/Kellen Clemens quarterback battle? What about the few months of the Kellen Clemens/Brett Ratliff/Erik Ainge battle? How about heading into training camp with Brad Smith/David Clowney/Chansi Stuckey fighting it out for a starting receiver spot? At cornerback, do you recall players like Hank Poteat, Drew Coleman, and Barrett rotating in a starting spot? The Jets offensive line used to feature players like Anthony Clement and Adrien Clarke.

Yes, the Darrelle Revis holdout sucks. There really isn’t a better way to put it. Revis was a player our organization was savvy enough to trade up to select, who developed in front of our eyes into the league’s best cornerback and arguably best defensive player. The entire league took notice. We got to see one of our players featured in Nike commercials and constantly be talked about on the NFL Network and ESPN. Everybody was looking forward to his encore performance to an epic 2009 season. Bring on Brandon Marshall. Bring on Randy Moss. Bring on Chad Ochocinco Johnson. Bring on Andre Johnson. Send every diva, big-name receiver at our defense and watch him disappear.

PhotobucketIt now looks like that may not happen. Before you bury the Jets organization, before you bury Woody Johnson, Mike Tannenbaum, and Rex Ryan, remember this: Tannenbaum brought this team back to relevancy with the resources provided to him by Johnson. He got us Mark Sanchez so we didn’t have to watch Kellen Clemens or Brett Ratliff one-hop curl routes. He beefed up the defense by trading for Kris Jenkins and Antonio Cromartie, hitting on David Harris in the second round, and signing Calvin Pace, Bart Scott, and Jim Leonhard. On offense, he collected an impressive arsenal of weapons for his franchise quarterback.

Rex Ryan may have hurt the Jets bargaining position by showing too much love for his player to the media. However, that is Ryan’s personality. Don’t talk about loving all the swagger and confidence he brought to the organization and then get mad when he gives due praise to a player. I will take the negative impact on negotiations Rex Ryan brings, in exchange for all the positives he has brought the Jets, which shouldn’t have to be listed.

Don’t talk yourself into hating Revis either. The Jets organization approached him about re-negotiating his contract and after hearing everything they said about him, he expects to be compensated at a substantially higher level in 2010 (currently scheduled to be the eight highest paid defensive back on the Jets). Yes, he should understand that Al Davis is clinically insane and gave Nnamdi Asomugha an aberration of a contract and yes he has three years left on his deal but this is a business. The Jets botched the Leon Washington situation to an extent, which has burned a scary image into the heads of current players. Who wants to shipped off to the rain in Seattle to play for Pete Carroll without a new contract?

There is plenty of blame to go around. The Jets organization gets a little. Darrelle Revis gets a little. Al Davis can have a little. Leon Washington’s injury is a factor. Yet, there is no reason to spend all pre-season pouting and looking for somebody to blame.

PhotobucketGuess what? Even without Darrelle Revis, the Jets are loaded with talent on both sides of the ball. They are still the favorite in the AFC East. They are being featured on HBO’s Hard Knocks. They have knocked the Giants and yes even the Yankees off the back page. We aren’t playing in Giants Stadium anymore. The Jets are playing in primetime in weeks 1, 3, and 5 to start off the season, along with Thanksgiving night and a December Monday night showdown in New England. Beyond that, there is still a relatively good chance Revis will join the team at some point before the regular season starts, despite all of Woody Johnson’s posturing today.

So relax Jets fans, life is good, enjoy the ride in 2010. We are the team everybody loves to hate and really what is better than that in sports?

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Author: Joe Caporoso

Joe Caporoso is the Owner and EIC of Turn On The Jets. His writing has been featured in the New York Times, Huffington Post, MMQB and AdWeek. Caporoso played football his entire life, including four years at Muhlenberg as a wide receiver, where he was arguably the slowest receiver to ever start in school history. He is the VP of Social Media at Whistle Sports

  • S Gato

    this could be the best article you ever wrote, i like motivational talk to fans instead of your regular false and insecure bravado about how good the jets will be hahahahaha

  • Joe Caporoso

    thanks…I think? TOJ is never insecure haha

  • steve

    Nicely written and well thought out. You’re right on all accounts, but like you said about Woody/Rex/Tannenbaum they really turned this team around and i have to stand by their side as a fan even after being forced to buy PSLs. The truth of the matter is Tannenbaum already went through this with Revis in his roookie season. Revis held out for 21 days for a larger guarentee. while no other team was willing to draft Revis in the top 10 of the draft, the Jets traded up to grab Revis with the 14th pick. Then they even paid him after he held out for 21 days as if he was a top 10 pick. He wanted more money up front back then and we gave it to him. As an organization, i can see why the jets aren’t just throwing him money. When will it ever end? When will he play out his entire contract? Its selfish. Mangold who has been to more pro bowls than revis is at practice right now improving himself with the team and helping out the new offensive guard. Harris is there now trying to be a team leader. Both of these players are playing on their final year. Revis has 3 years left. Granted he’s the best at his position, but so is Mangold and Mangold is there and not to mention Mangold has to protect our $50 million QB, so he could have definitely did the same, but didnt. Revis said he has to do whats best for his family. Correct me if im wrong, but i thought missing out on $130,000 was a lot of money. Its more than what my family makes during these tough times. What am i supposed to tell my son who idols Revis, he’s not playing because $120 million wasn’t enough? I’m sorry but my middle finger is pointing right at Revis and his ridiculous demands. Whats best for his family…haha in 10 more days he’ll be fined for more money than i can provide my family in two years.

  • T

    That’s the smart Gato using the word Bravado…impressive…good article but I don’t think the Jets have fully established themselves as the team eveyrbody loves to hate…Maybe Giants fans are more vocal now about their hatred, but that’s because they have been knocked off their NYC pedastal. Outside of NY/NJ, I don’t see alot of hatred. Maybe I am biased because I’m a fan of a team that has to hate the GIants, but I would pull it back a notch on this “love to hate” stuff. In fact, I like the Jets becuase they make me think of the good old days in Philly with Buddy Ryan, you just better hope Rex wins more super bowls than his dad as a head coach.

  • Joe Caporoso

    Well said Steve and your certainly entitled that opinion. Revis has quickly made Mangold and Harris fan favorites (if they weren’t already). Tannenbaum HAS TO reward those two for showing up and not creating a problem for the team this year, when they had more of a right to than Revis.

    T Bird – Fair point, there is nothing wrong with a little PHI to NYJ love or the reverse

  • steve

    Also word on the street is that Revis’ agents are the one’s turning down the contracts. Revis, from what is being said, accepted the $120 million contract which had $40 million guarenteed, but his agents declined it. These are the same people who represented Pete Kendall and Chris Baker. Where are those two players now? I understand that the players love their agents and the agents let the players drive their cars around and all that fun stuff but some of these players, maybe revis, are being being mislead.

  • ShibaDog

    I’d just like to point out that for me at least the TURNaround for the whole jets organization began with Parcells. Before that the Jets were a truly bottom feeder of a team. I give the Tuna credit changing the culture of the jets. It’s true that over the years since he quit the jets have been up and down but at least there wasn’t the feeling of abject hopelessness.

  • Joe Caporoso

    Hopefully Revis will take a more proactive part in the negotiations, instead of leaving everything to the agents