The Life and Times of Cro
Antonio Cromartie’s release came as little surprise to those who live and die with the Jets. His recent hip issues and hefty salary were a bad mash-up for the ultra athletic player whom many of us hoped would finally grow a consistency to his game.
At his best, Cro would recover with his long strides after getting beat early at the line of scrimmage to disrupt a long pass or he would reach out with his long arms to pick off a pass. At times his valuable top notch ball skills were put to use. Like the time on special teams when he returned a late fourth quarter kickoff 47 yards on the Jets final drive to set up the game winning field goal by Nick Folk at Indy in the 2010 Wildcard round.
At worst, he’d get beaten badly, the way he did last season by Steelers (and future Jet?) WR Emmanuel Sanders for a 55 yard TD during a disappointing 19-6 loss…in a tight game where neither team could afford being gashed and back when the 3-2 Jets were even making themselves believe. Let’s also not forget the days when yellow flags would rain from the sky on his side of the field. Some of the tugging and holding calls saving big gains, others just hard to stomach unnecessary fouls.
The stakes always seem high when he’s involved in a play, and there will be those who won’t miss him I’m sure, but I liked rooting for Cro. He was human. Fallible yet capable. Colorful. Quotable. My favorite Cro moment in Green and White was when he called Brady an A-hole during the week leading up to the upset in Foxboro in the 2010 AFC divisional round.
Those Goddamn Snack Jets were dysfunctional but fun. Cro was an integral part of that swagger. Teamed with Darrelle Revis and lining up against opponents second best receivers he was a great compliment to a great corner.
Cromartie is not the player that Revis is and never will be, but he sure loved being a Jet. Maybe more than Revis ever did. Cro took pride in being part of the Jets. He never took the disruptive and failed Asomugha chase personally in the summer of 2010 as it was happening. He always stuck up for his team even while the club was being painted as a circus. As it often was while he was here. If the Jets inquiry about CB Alterraun Verner leads to the recent Titan replacing Cromartie then let me just say best of luck 31 and thank you for caring the way the diehards do.
What is this 2009? It better not be! If you caught this one Sunday I’m sure it made you wonder the same thing. “Acoording to TFY Draft Insider’s Tony Pauline, the Jets intend to “lessen the load”on Geno Smith in his second NFL season, and hope to keep Smith “under 20 passes per game.” I have no patience for this comment having an iota of truth to it. You don’t draft a quarterback and start him as a rookie to handcuff him with a twenty pass pitch count. Well, unless you are the New York Jets. Hence the fear that this one may have some truth to it.
In Rex Ryan’s first year as HC, soon to be ex-Jet Mark Sanchez was a handoff machine game manager. However the team was built up front to pound the rock while the defense was ready to hold teams to under 21 points per game. The current Jets are building up front on defense but have to solidify the line backing corps and secondary first before they can rely on shutting teams down every week. The new NFL is also one that has rules in place favoring the air attack. This is no time or place for scripted limitations.
You want to make the run game a bigger focus than most teams have right now for the offense? Fine. Do not proclaim that you would be doing so primarily to ease up life for your latest young QB. Sit Smith and let a vet handle things in that case. If the Jets didn’t learn from the restrictions they put on themselves as an offense through Sanchez, then shame on them.
Stop Trying to Read John Idzik
” The Jets are interested in” a lot of free agents. As they should be. Yet every time we see that heading these days, let’s keep in mind that with poker faced GM John Idzik we won’t know who or where the pieces will come from. That’s a good thing.
Talk is cheap, rumors fly and smoke screens work in the free agency wars. Especially here with a ravenous local media that breaks news even when the claims stem from unnamed sources in untraceable locations. No folks, House of Cards season two is not making me paranoid. It’s just that it’s not worth chasing most of these loud above ground reports. Especially when the new GM works best in the shadows.
- The backup update: Josh McCown wants to start somewhere I hear. So does Michael Vick probably. If either ends up a Jet, they’ll get a shot, but no guarantees. Both will just have to do the Tim Tebow and land here believing that this is their best shot at unseating a shaky starter. Given the talk about a twenty pass pitch count for Geno Smith, if I were them I might inquire more with Jets brass about any truth to that chatter.
- Let’s also keep in mind that McCown looked better last year than he ever did with Brandon Marshall, Alshon Jeffrey, Matt Forte and a big TE in Martellus Bennett around him. With an offensive minded HC in Marc Trestman.
- Former GM Bill Polian said that it’s hard to find top receivers in free agency. I don’t care how they are found, just find two please. Free agency, draft, trade. Know what types you seek and grab them. No excuses will suffice. Most quality teams have good receivers. Follow their blueprint for acquiring some if needed, just get it done.
- The Jets want to re-sign sign Austin Howard. Good. Be swift though, others will want his services too. Grab another offensive guard this month while you’re at it Mr Idzik. Keeping the offensive line intact and adding quality to it is the key foundation for rebuilding this offense. As much as we all hear about the quarterback position.
- Manish Mehta reported that the Jets are eying Maurice Jones Drew. Manish has angered fans in the past with his questionable sources and pot stirring, but leaving opinions of MM and the report aside, if MJD is being brought here under the notion of the Jets going ground and pound to hide Geno, boo.
- The Titans are reportedly making Chris Johnson available through a trade. If I had a choice, and the price of compensation was the same, I’d rather trade for DeSean Jackson. Stretch the field and draft a young fresh running back in the later rounds if you must.