Antonio Cromartie will sign with a one-year deal the Arizona Cardinals, according to SNY’s Jeane Coakley. Cromartie wanted to stay with the Jets, Coakley said.
The Jets released Cromartie on March 9, avoiding a $5 million bonus and saving $9.5 million against the cap (TJB, March 9).
From 2010-2013 with the Jets, Cromartie had 51 passes defended, 140 tackles and 13 interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown. He also had two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
Cromartie was traded to the Jets in 2010 for a 2011 draft pick. He signed a four-year, $32 million contract with the Jets in 2011. He went to the Pro Bowl in 2007, while playing with the Chargers, 2012 and 2013, representing the Jets.
Brian Bassett, TheJetsBlog.comNot unexpected news for the Jets, but this feels like a tough blow for Jets fans after a disappointing free agency. While the Jets obviously have the money to retain Cromartie if they like John Idzik has been disciplined, if not ascetic, in his spending.
Cutting Cromartie, with some semi-pursuits of many of the free agent class’s best corners doesn’t give a settling feeling. Everyone knows Rex Ryan loves cornerbacks and Dee Milliner, Kyle Wilson, Ellis Lankster and Darrin Walls is a promising, but mixed bag from spots one to four. There might still be ways to cornerbacks to the team. There is the draft, players will be cut between now and then or the Jets might look to trade for a player. Today’s roster is not the opening day roster. Even so, the opportunities for finding veteran contributors to come in as starters is much more limited than it was a week ago.
Cro seemed destined to part ways with the Jets no matter what came next and we wish him the best. The Cardinals play in the NFL’s toughest division in 2013, and were one of the league’s best teams to not make the playoffs. Paired with Patrick Peterson, Cromartie could have a chance to extend his career in the desert under Bruce Arians.