2011 Undrafted Free Agent Signings: New York Jets

 

The New York Jets have formally announced their undrafted free agent signings this year, and there are ten of them, who have also been added to TOJ’s updated depth chart.

TE Josh Baker, 6-foot-3, 244 pounds (N.W. Missouri)
LB Nick Bellore, 6-1, 250 (Central Michigan)
WR Michael Campbell, 6-2, 205 (Temple)
WR Dan DePalma, 5-11, 200 (West Chester)
TE Collin Franklin, 6-5, 252 (Iowa State)
LB Stafford Gatling, 6-4/249 (Ohio)
C Tom Ottaiano, 6-1/295 (Monmouth)
CB Julian Posey, 5-11, 187 (Ohio)
WR Courtney Smith, 6-5, 230 (South Alabama)
OL Chris Stewart, 6-5, 351 (Notre Dame)

Initial thoughts —

Half of these ten are either wide receivers or tight ends, which makes sense considering how those positions are in flux right now. You want as many people available as possible to run routes, especially with Jerricho Cotchery coming off an injury. Josh Baker is a guy to keep an eye on, with his athleticism he could flex into the H-Back role easily. Nick Bellore is another player who should have a good shot of making the roster considering how thin the Jets are at linebacker and that he was considered by many to be a 6th or 7th round prospect in the draft.

NFL Free Agency 2011: New York Jets Day Three Primer

And the madness continues…

– The most encouraging thing to start your day: How about this Tweet from Adam Schefter:

Jets are more than $10 million UNDER salary cap, according to two NFL capologists. Might make the Jets the favorite to land Nnamdi Asomugha.”

Mike Tannenbaum how do you do it? If the Jets don’t land Asomugha, you would think they still have a good shot to bring back Antonio Cromartie or at least another veteran to compete with Kyle Wilson like Chris Carr. It seems to sound like Asomugha will reach a decision in the next day or two between the Jets, 49ers, and Texans and after him the rest of the cornerback dominoes will fall.

– The Denver Broncos are reportedly interested in Eric Smith but the Jets are going to make a strong effort to retain him. Drew Coleman is also continuing to receive interest from a handful of other teams. I am surprised we haven’t heard more about Brodney Pool yet.

– Considering Sidney Rice has signed with Seattle and Steve Breaston signed with Kansas City, you have to think a move for Braylon Edwards is coming soon for some team. I wouldn’t completely write the Jets off because if they can’t secure Asomugha, maybe they will look back towards Edwards but it does seem highly unlikely at this point that he will be back.

NFL Free Agency 2011: AFC East Waking Up

The rest of the AFC East has woken up in the past few hours, with the New England Patriots trading a fifth round draft pick in 2013 for Albert Haynesworth. It is hard to criticize New England for taking a risk like this considering the success the Jets have had with players like say for example, Santonio Holmes…and look at him now.

Regardless, Haynesworth was absolutely toxic last year in Washington. I would also be more concerned if the Jets didn’t have the best center in football in Nick Mangold and one of the best guards in the NFL in Brandon Moore. The move does whiff a little bit of desperation from the Patriots doesn’t it? However, if Bill Belichick can get anything out of Haynesworth, a line-up with him and Vince Wilfork on it could be a little scary.

The Miami Dolphins have also made some waves by trading for running back Reggie Bush. He is a nice gadget player, who can provide big plays if put in the right spot but still doesn’t give the Dolphins the type of every down running game they need to support Chad Henne, or even Kyle Orton if they trade for him. I do think Orton would be a nice upgrade for them at quarterabck if they could work out the details of the trade.

Buffalo has been relatively quiet. They acquired Tyler Thigpen to backup Ryan Fitzpatrick and brought back cornerback Drayton Florence, who the Jets had expressed some interest in, yet also lost linebacker Paul Posluszny to Jacksonville.

NFL Free Agency 2011: What Dominoes Will Fall Next For Jets?

After a chaotic morning where the New York Jets signed Santonio Holmes to a five year deal and the discussion about Nnamdi Asomugha coming to town reached a fever pitch, things have quieted down…a little bit.

– The discussions about Asomugha have continued on, with ESPN’s John Clayton commenting it will take a few days for him to work a deal out with any team. However, keep in mind Clayton had said earlier in the off-season the Jets would be in salary cap hell and would have no chance to sign any free agents, so take his words with a grain of salt.

– A testament to Mike Tannenbaum’s creativity. Santonio Holmes contract will only count $2.45 million against the 2011 cap…wow.

– Manish Mehta of The Daily News has reported the Jets will ask LaDainian Tomlinson to rework his contract to free up more cap space (likely to pursue Asomugha).

– The Jets have resigned kicker Nick Folk to a 1 year deal. CBS Sports is also reporting that punter Steve Weatherford is unlikely to return.

– In a press conference today, Rex Ryan said Mark Sanchez will be the team captain this year and will literally wear a “C” on his jersey.

– Darrelle Revis was very diplomatic about Asomugha joining the team while still paying respect to Antonio Cromartie. Revis did call Asomugha “the best corner in football” even though I find it hard to believe Revis doesn’t he think he holds that title.

– This isn’t surprising but it sounds like Braylon Edwards days with the Jets are numbered. He is clearly frustrated by the lack of attention/effort the Jets have made thus far to keep him, which is understandable but they simply have higher priorities right now. Edwards will get a good contract somewhere and that team will get a tough receiver who improved vastly the past year.

– The speculation on Randy Moss coming to the Jets as a cheap alternative to Braylon Edwards has picked up. However, the latest word from Bob Glauber of Newsday is that his chances of joining the team remain “very small.” How the Jets handle the wide receiver position, will likely depend how the cornerback position shakes out for them.

– Kellen Clemens was signed by the Washington Redskins to a one year deal. We will miss his happy feet in the pocket and interceptions.

– Ben Hartsock signed a two year deal with the Carolina Panthers. We will miss his false starts and holding penalties.

NFL Free Agency 2011: Departure Of Brad Smith Seems Inevitable

The loss of Brad Smith may be impossible to stop. His mid major level market value, combined with the signing of Santonio Holmes and the chasing down of Nnamdi Asomugha, aside from looking to fill the second WR position, may make the bid to keep Smith a helpless one. This harsh reality will be tough to stomach when simply kickstarting an engine that hasn’t clicked on some Sunday afternoon, becomes the difference between winning and losing. 

The Patriots, Dolphins, Bears and Giants have all been named as teams who have interest Smith. He brings so many intangibles to the table. Teams will pay for that versatility, perhaps with the mindset of expanding Smith’s role on their club. A chameleon type presence that includes big kickoff returns, long clutch runs from the line of scrimmage out of the Wildcat, the ability to line up at QB, and a penchant for late game changing plays.

There were the big runs against the Bengals to insure a playoff spot on the final night of Giants Stadium. The kickoff return for TD a week prior in Indianapolis that left the Colts and the benched Peyton Manning on the way to a controversial first loss. The opening kickoff return in Pittsburgh in 2010, off of the heels of an embarrassing thrashing in New England and a putrid loss at home to Miami during the stretch run. As well as countless other plays that would breathe life into a lifeless offense, often times while keeping the chains moving.

It would be interesting to hear how other teams who are currently in the market for Smith, envision his role. By making Smith a solid piece, not one that simply enters the fray when push comes to shove, part of the element of surprise and change of pace that Smith brought when he entered situations could disappear. An increase in touches however, could create an increase in the amount of big plays Smith could provide.

Those who shrug off Smith’s imminent exit are only making themselves feel better when they say that Smith’s departure will be “no big loss.” It will be a tremendous loss. Smith changes momentum, makes enormous game changing and even season changing playsHis one of a kind skill set is not replaceable though one player.

His abilities are not the type that can be judged solely off one game either. Only by watching Smith every week, can one begin to understand this player’s impeccable sense of timing, and clutch production for his team.

Smith’s contributions during his time in New York have been remarkable for a player who has yet to own a solidified position on offense or special teams. His departure, especially after crunching the numbers however, seems sadly inevitable.

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NFL Free Agency 2011: Asomugha To Jets Momentum Picking Up

Where there is smoke, there is usually fire, especially when it comes to Mike Tannenbaum making moves. Along those lines, the chatter about Nnamdi Asomugha coming to the New York Jets has picked up gradually throughout the past few days and is now to the point where it sounds like the Jets are the favorite to land him.

Michael Lombardi of the NFL Network has reported throughout the morning the Jets discussions with him are “very serious” and Albert Breer, also of the NFL Network, has corroborated the report. The Jets beat writers and other media members have reported the team is discussing restructuring contracts with current players to make a run at Asomugha and that he is their top priority right now.

The most recent news is that the San Francisco 49ers have become the Jets main competition to signing Asmougha, which is somewhat surprising considering many thought Dallas, Houston, and Philadelphia would be heavily involved in pursuing him.

Yes, the 49ers can offer more money but the Jets can offer a better location, team, and a proven coaching staff and system. Nevermind the chance of forming the greatest starting duo of corners in NFL history.

Obviously, if the Jets do work something out with Asomugha, other areas of the team will feel the impact but honestly the impact may not be as bad as some make it out to be. Braylon Edwards is probably gone either way, considering how much money was spent on Holmes, same goes with Brad Smith. You don’t need Antonio Cromartie back if you sign Asomugha. Beyond that, the Jets should still be able to get Eric Smith and Trevor Pryce back to improve their defensive depth, and maybe sign somebody like Randy Moss to a short term, incentive-laden deal to replace Edwards.

New York Jets Sign Santonio Holmes To Five Year Deal

The flight boys are still in the building.

The New York Jets have resigned wide receiver Santonio Holmes to a five year deal. According to Adam Schein, Holmes took less money to stay in New York because “he loves the Jets and Mark Sanchez.” It is being reported the contract is 24 million dollars guaranteed. The total value of the contract hasn’t been released yet but it is expected to be around 50 million dollars.

This move is incredibly important to the continued growth of the New York Jets offense. Holmes is a gamebreaker who insures that defenses can’t continually stack the box to stop the Jets running game. He is the type of weapon that can bail Mark Sanchez out of a tough spot and turn a five yard slant route into a 65 yard touchdown.  

We have heard Holmes was the Jets number one priority in free agency and they proved it by signing him so quickly. According to various sources, the Jets will now shift their focus to the cornerback position, which will start with assessing whether they could afford Nnamdi Asomugha. After settling corner either with Asomugha, Antonio Cromartie, or a cheaper veteran option, they will see if they can work something out with Braylon Edwards if he is still available. However, considering how much they just invested in Holmes, it now seems very unlikely that Edwards will be back.

Stay tuned…

2011 NFL Free Agency: New York Jets Day Two Primer

Let’s get right to it

The only official move the Jets have made so far is resigning right tackle Wayne Hunter to a 4 year, 13 million dollar deal. It is also being reported that in conjunction with this move Damien Woody has retired.

– The Washington Redskins have resigned Santana Moss to a 3 year, 15 million dollar deal and just signed Donte Stallworth to a one year deal. This would seem to indicate they have less money to throw at Santonio Holmes, but you never know with Daniel Snyder.

– Speaking of Holmes, Jenny Vrentas of The Star-Ledger is reporting the Jets have made a formal contract offer to him. ESPN’s Rich Cimini has also followed up today that it is likely Holmes will end up staying in New York.

– Manish Mehta of The Daily News is reporting cornerback Drew Coleman is likely to leave via free agency.

– It is being widely reported that wide receiver Brad Smith will likely sign with the Chicago Bears today.

– ESPN’s Rich Cimini is reporting the Jets are pursuing outside linebacker Antwan Barnes and cornerback Drayton Florence.

– It is widely being reported the Jets are making a strong push to bring safety Eric Smith back. We haven’t heard anything about Brodney Pool yet.

– And now the biggest news, the Nnamdi Asomugha to the Jets talk is heating up by the second. After The Star-Ledger reported yesterday the team made formal contact with him, the NFL Network’s Michael Lombardi has stated today “I keep hearing from well place reliable NFL source that this Jet talk and Nnamdi Asomugha is serious, and I mean serious.”

We can only imagine the smile on Rex’s face.

TOJ Roundtable: Is Asomugha Coming To New York?

UPDATE: Jets have officially reached out to Asomugha

TOJ Roundtable: where each of our writers offers a quick opinion on a pressing Jets question of the day.

What is the percent chance of Nnamdi Asomugha signing with the New York Jets?

Joe Caporoso: 10-15%…I never write off Tannenbaum’s creativity or Rex’s ability to recruit but I think Houston or Dallas will make an offer too good for him to ignore

Chris Celletti: I’d say it’s very, very low, probably 10%. He’ll probably go to the highest bidder and I don’t think that’s the Jets. With Holmes as their number one priority, and the fact that they already have the best corner in the league on the roster, it’d be misguided to give Asomugha a huge deal.

Justin Fritze: 5%.  Nnamdi will not happen, it would thin the defense out too much as per salary cap.

Rob Celletti: I’d put this at a very slim 5%.  If the Jets didn’t have so many other roster issues to worry about, I’d say it was higher.  I know how much Rex loves corners, but the Jets led the league in defense two years ago with the following guys playing across from Revis at one point or another: Lito Sheppard, Donald Strickland, Marquice Cole, Drew Coleman and Dwight Lowery.

TJ Rosenthal: 30%, Asomugha is either using the Jets and the bright lights of New York as leverage to obtain more dollars in places such as Houston, or he is being genuine about wanting to be a Jet. Our guess is, he wants to be a Jet, so the question then becomes, at what price? To make room for a salary like Asomugha’s, current Jets like Mark Sanchez will have to restructure their deal. Sanchez today stated that he has no problems doing that.

The second part of the equation will be how much the Jets can live with being handcuffed in trying to retain their own top level guys, or other free agents on the market due to the high cost of Asomugha. Third, is whether or not Asomugha himself would be willing to play for less than his own market value, or inflated market value from desperate teams. Should all three parts work into the process positively, then we expect the Jets to have the best chance of any team in football to acquire him. Should one of the three go against what it would it would take to make this happen, we see Asomugha on another team.

Damien Woody Retires, New York Jets Resign Wayne Hunter

In a somewhat surprising move, considering the reported interest the New York Jets were expressing earlier in the day about bringing veteran right tackle Damien Woody back, the team has instead resigned veteran RT Wayne Hunter to a four year, 13 million dollar deal and Woody has retired.

The Jets will now move forward with Hunter competing with second year lineman Vladimir Ducasse competing for the starting right tackle job. It is clear the Jets weren’t willing to meet whatever contract demands Woody had, who had made it clear he wanted to come back to the team but not at a veteran’s minimum salary and with a guarantee to start, obviously the Jets weren’t offering that. Hunter was pretty decent filling in for Woody at the end of last season and his contract is likely structured not to have a major impact on the Jets cap situation this year.

Woody has been the Jets starting right tackle the past three years and was consistently very good for the team. He was kind enough to do an interview with me last season for SB Nation New York and we wish him well in his future endeavors. Congratulations on a long, productive NFL career.