Nobody actually thought that the New York Jets could possibly be interested in trading one of the most dominant defensive players in the game today, right?
Well after this week’s NFL combine, the idea is turning into a reality as it became known that the Jets were actively shopping Darrelle Revis to other teams.
The Jets’ camp of owner Woody Johnson, general manager John Idzik, and head coach Rex Ryan ignored the Revis camp all week, making it very clear that Johnson isn’t crazy about the best cornerback in the NFL today. At least not crazy enough to offer Revis $16 million dollars a year over the next six years, which many believe is what he will be asking for in his new deal.
His current deal is seven years long, but turns into four if Revis does not hold out during those first four seasons. Essentially, Revis will be voiding the final three years by being a good sport and not repeating his hold out that took place for the world to see on HBO’s Hard Knocks in 2010.
This particular contract is broken down by $7.5 million dollars in 2010, $6 million in 2011, $4.5 million in 2012, and $3 million for each of the final four years. Revis will receive $46 million of the $55 million dollar deal over the first four years with a $27.5 million dollar guarantee.
The problem with this contract is that it was simply a band-aid deal just to get him on the field for the 2010 season. Mike Tannenbaum had to know that after year four Revis would want a new deal, because of how low his yearly salary would become.
Well the fourth year will take place in this upcoming season which means the Jets were expecting to re-work the contract during this off-season. But Revis tore his ACL last season and now it would be a big risk to throw more money his way.
It seems that Johnson had no plans on giving Revis a Mario Williams type deal anyway, but now while rehabbing a torn ACL theres a minuscule chance.
Because of this, and the amount of holes the Jets have on their roster, new general manager John Idzik appears to want to rebuild the team. This rebuild can be fast forwarded by trading Revis, because of what the Jets can demand in return.
But do the Jets really have any leverage? As mentioned before, would any team want to trade significant assets for a potential one year rental that may not even be himself after a torn ACL?
Even if Revis is still Revis which could very well happen, after seeing how Vikings running back Adrian Peterson returned from the same injury, would said team want to shell out that Mario Williams type deal for a cornerback?
As great as Revis is, as legendary as Revis is, he plays cornerback. Offenses may need to eliminate their number one receiver from the game and not throw to him, but they can exploit other weaknesses of a defense. There’s just no way to build a defense around one lock down cornerback, because their responsibility is dictated by the opposing teams offense week in and week out.
Although it’s valuable to make one side of the field almost impossible to pass on, it’s not worth nearly $100 million dollars for a guy who may only need to defend two passes a week.
For the Jets, Revis is just a liability on a team with many cap issues looking to re-tool their weakened positions.
These reasons lead into the final conclusion of it making sense for the Jets to trade Revis before this years trade deadline, or else he will walk into free agency and the Jets will get nothing in return.
Imagine Revis signing in New England with the Patriots who have a weak secondary? You can bet that Robert Kraft would pay anything to take Revis right from the Jets.
It’s up to Idzik to find a team that will roll the dice on Revis, and this has to be a Super Bowl contender. That’s the type of team that could give Idzik what he wants just because the glory of a Super Bowl is so close.
For example, picture Revis on the San Francisco 49ers’ defense. This is one of the better and most likely fits because that defense is already the best in the league right now. The 49ers only weak point is at the cornerback position, as seen when Anquan Boldin did as he pleased in the Super Bowl.
It’s easy to argue that the 49ers win that game with Revis in the secondary.
It also helps that the 49ers have 15 draft slots in this upcoming NFL draft. It’s easy to see the 49ers trading their first round pick or second round pick from the Chiefs. They also have the cap space to make the move more than a one year rental, so look for the 49ers to be players in the Revis sweepstakes.
Other teams that could make a run would include the Denver Broncos who don’t have many years with Peyton Manning remaining. Do you think they give up a 70 yard touchdown with a chance to win a playoff game with Revis playing deep?
In the end, only proven teams would fit the Revis mold. Revis isn’t a player you can re-build a team around because he’s so expensive and if other parts of the defense are weak they’ll be exploited.
On a contending team with an already great defense and dynamic offense, Revis is the final piece to the puzzle. It’s not clear what type of deal the Jets want, but as the deadline approaches come October, they’ll be forced to take the best available offer.
In that case they’ll need rivals to out-bid another. Maybe the Seahawks make a splash and offer corner Brandon Browner and a first round pick plus a little more to pair Revis with Richard Sherman and keep him from the 49ers.
Or maybe the Chiefs offer some draft picks to keep Revis from Denver and pair him with Brandon Flowers. Keep in mind that their draft picks would be much more valuable than any other teams would. To the naked eye it may look condescending as I said he wouldn’t fit in a rebuilding team, but I don’t consider them in that class as they’ve already improved the QB play and have a talented defense, so Revis would be a big addition there.
Many don’t think there’s much of a trade market for the great Jets cornerback, but it’s to early to tell. Once Revis begins to show he’s healthy, and teams start to play regular season games, demand will heat up.
For that, Idzik will need to be patient and let this go until the very end. Revis will be traded, but it will take some more time unless presented with an offer they can’t refuse.
Either way, the Jets will come out winners. As hard as it is to imagine, the future of the Jets has more promise without the headache that has been Darrelle Revis.