Should the rumored reports that the Jets are looking to trade three-time All-Pro cornerback Darrelle Revis be true then the Jets are making the tough, but wise, decision. Why? There are a number of reasons:
1. Rex Ryan is good enough to put together a good defense with or without Revis.
Revis, arguably the league’s best corner, missed nearly the entire season last year yet Ryan was still able to field a good defense despite having to substitute in Kyle Wilson for him. Part of the reason for that was the improved pass rush created by his youthful defensive line with Muhammad Wilkerson and Quinton Coples. Still, Ryan is one of the best on that side of the ball. Should he get a capable offense, watch out.
2. The Jets have annual salary cap problems, and a new Revis deal won’t help that.
Revis is a free agent after 2013, a season for which he’ll be paid $6 million—well below his market value. After that he’ll certainly command a salary double the size. If the Jets are having cap issues now, it certainly won’t get easier next offseason if Revis is still on the books at a much higher rate.
Besides, the other option is to renegotiate highly paid players contracts so that the team pays more in the future. That didn’t work so well with Mark Sanchez last offseason as the team is on the hook for more than $8 million to him in 2013.
3. The team (mainly the offense) has a number of holes, and Revis is its best trade bait.
Naturally the Jets can address their shortcomings the same way everybody else does—through the draft and/or free agency—but should they trade Revis for some draft picks it gives them a great way to start over with new general manager John Idzik. The more picks he has the better he can maneuver around the draft and get the players he wants.
While there is some worry about Revis’s trade value coming off major knee surgery, he’s still only 27 and after the way Adrian Peterson returned this past season, those concerns may be minimal.
Plus, there is precedence for dealing your best player to improve the team. When Dallas traded away star running back Herschel Walker to the Vikings back in 1989, they ended up getting the draft picks that led to their domination of the league for much of the ’90s.
Should Idzik make the right deal it could quickly put the Jets back on course.
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