Ryan Spadola declines offer to return, signs with Dolphins

The Jets cut Ryan Spadola to set up the roster the way they wanted it for the Monday night game, but it looks like the Jets might have played with fire if they really wanted Spadola to stay with the team.

Ryan Spadola

According to Kim Martin in Newsday, the Jets were serious about bringing Spadola back, but maybe to Spadola not serious enough.

The Jets apparently wanted Ryan Spadola back.

But instead of returning to Florham Park, the New Jersey-born wide receiver decided to join the Dolphins’ practice squad instead.

Brian Bassett, TheJetsBlog.com

This is one of those moves that I wonder what we will think about two years from now.

Spadola was the most consistent and productive undrafted receiver for the Jets in the preseason, so the Jets must feel pretty good about Michael Campbell to have kept him over Spadola.  Could the Jets use this opportunity to bring back a player like Zach Rogers?  Rogers had a rough end to the preseason, but he’s still an intriguing prospect who had some bad breaks due to some lapses in concentration.

The Jets might say they wanted to bring Spadola back, but Spadola took only a practice squad spot with the Dolphins.  This leads us to think that Miami paid him more (there’s a $6K minimum per week on squad players) or the Jets offer was simply no better than a similar squad spot.  

Through five weeks, Spadola has been down the depth chart and the team’s signing of a player like David Nelson instead of promoting him could have made Spadola question the team’s intentions.  Spadola is a player who knows that every opportunity could be his last and might have felt that his path to playing time looked better with the Dolphins.  Consider also that right now the Dolphins only have four active receivers on their roster and it would be easy to see why Spadola and his agent would think that the grass is greener in Miami.

The Jets could theoretically bring Spadola back, but it might take a grand gesture and there are rules about signing a player off another team’s practice squad.  The Dolphins could make a matching offer, which Spadola might take anyway.  Regardless, should the Dolphins cut Spadola, the Jets would be wise to figure out a way to bring him back.

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