New York Jets Running 2017 Free Agency Blog – Day One (3/9)

A running blog on the first day of the NFL league year, covering any moves made by the New York Jets and other news around the NFL…

Despite a flurry of moves during the tampering period (none made by the New York Jets), the league year officially opens today. Keep checking this article throughout the day for news and analysis on all moves around the league. Whatever writer leaves an update, he/she will follow with a link to their Twitter handle for more thoughts…

8:15 PM – Jets re-sign OLB and special teamer Josh Martin…

The Jets special teams were terrible again last year. So keeping Martin, 25, makes sense. He led the team in special team’s tackles with 14 while adding eight additional tackles and a half sack on defense. – Mike McLaughlin

6:30PM – To recap the Jets “interest” so far on the day:

  • Smokin’ Jay Cutler – Bridge Quarterback From Hell
  • Benny Cunningham – Mediocre 3rd down back and okay kick returner
  • Andre Holmes – Quality #4 or #5 wide receiver

There is no to need to overreact three hours into the league but remember the Jets were not major players in free agency last year either. I wouldn’t expect a huge rush. It will be interesting to see what second and third tier FAs the Jets target tonight and throughout the weekend.

One other note, they brought back Ben Ijalana for 11 million dollars over 2 years. Could they envision him as a starting left tackle or will he more appropriately be a swing backup and provide depth? As of now, the Jets starting OL is

  • RT: Brandon Shell
  • RG: Brian Winters
  • C: Wesley Johnson (tendered at 2nd round level)
  • LG: James Carpenter
  • LT: Ben Ijalana

4:45PM – A swirling of Jets rumors…

  • Could the Jets ACTUALLY sign Jay Cutler?
  • Could the Jets be involved in a trade that nets them Trevor Siemian?
  • Could the Jets be one of the team’s inquiring about recently traded Brock Osweiler (the horror).
  • How much longer will Sheldon Richardson be around?

Right now it is all quiet on the Jets front but many are speculating about how they will fill the quarterback position. I’d rather pay Geno Smith or Nick Foles pennies than give up capital to acquire Siemian or Osweiler. Cutler is a completely illogical move.

Overall, the Jets are clearly focused on the second and their tier of free agents. – Joe Caporoso 

2:00PM – It took about five seconds after the Jay Cutler release for Adam Schefter to drop this nugget:

Before I go on about how this is probably a bad idea, I’ll just say this – any move the Jets make at quarterback has to weigh the player’s ability and age versus cost and long-term commitment. The Jets showed restraint in the Glennon pursuit, and didn’t appear to come after Hoyer with an aggressive offer. So if the Jets decide to let the market play out – a market that is also about to introduce Tony Romo as the premier short-term fix – there’s a chance that the musical chairs stop spinning with Cutler left without a team interested in a short-term fix willing to pay him good money to be it.

But let’s be real here. This is also the same team that bid $12 million against themselves for Ryan Fitzpatrick last year. And if they’re interested, there is no sense of adding him at the likely price just to be a one year holdover for a rebuilding team. His signing could well signal another desperate attempt at a quick fix. Or even more comically, maybe there is interest in signing Cutler for the foreseeable future – not just as a stopgap, but as a starter to build around over the next few seasons. QB coach Jeremy Bates is Cutler’s #1 fan, after all.

Sit tight. It’s going to get interesting.

David Aitken

1:30PM – It looks like AJ Bouye will be heading to Jacksonville (IDZIK). Meanwhile, Jay Cutler will likely remain at the center of many Jets rumors due to his connection with Quarterback Coach Jeremy Bates. Cutler brings a big name and a big arm but there is not much logical about putting him on a rebuilding team as a theoretical mentor to Christian Hackenberg.

A few lesser exciting names to watch: Zach Line (FB), Marcus Cooper (CB), John Simon (OLB), Bradley McDougald (SS), Ryan Griffin (TE), Zach Brown (ILB), Kevin Minter (ILB), Carlos Hyde (S/CB).

Your yearly reminder: Big spending early in free agency rarely equates to winning

And now a Geno Smith GIF…

– Joe Caporoso

11:00AM – A few more hours have passed with a few more league wide surprises. It sounds like Brandin Cooks may be headed to New England in exchange for Malcolm Butler. Cooks feels like the kind of guy who will catch 120+ passes in that offense, which is just….great.

Cleveland has signed Kenny Britt to a monster deal, likely signaling the end of Terrelle Pryor’s time there.

As for our Jets, they appropriately gave future starting center Wesley Johnson a second round tender. They have handled the position right this offseason by moving on from Mangold to him. There is also apparent interest in depth, vertical receiver Andre Holmes (meh) and rumors of them talking Sheldon Richardson trade with Denver and Cincinnati.

AJ McCarron and Trevor Siemian are becoming popular names with the Jets fans. I’d still rather see them put a pick towards Watson or Patrick Mahomes than either of those guys. – Joe Caporoso

8:00AM – Rumored targets for the Jets that are off the board: Brian Hoyer, Tyrod Taylor, Tony Jefferson, Patrick DiMarco, Jack Doyle and Ricky Wagner. The largest outstanding question remains, how will the Jets handle quarterback? Jay Cutler? Nick Foles? Ryan Mallett? Chase Daniel? GENO SMITH?

Here is a thought, Deshaun Watson is the best quarterback in this class and a strong prospect overall, if he is on the board at #6, why not just take him?

Outside of quarterback, the Jets were rumored to have interest in pass rusher Nick Perry, who is 26 years old and coming off a 11 sack season but it now appears the Packers have locked him down to a long term deal. Jabaal Sheard, John Simon and Alex Okafor could be fallback targets on the edge. The Jets should also be poking around the corner market, with names like Marcus Cooper, Prince Amukamara and Dre Kirkpatrick being prospective targets.

Oh and the Jets are likely to bring back long snapper Tanner Purdum! – Joe Caporoso


Photo Credit: 

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