Opinion: Why the Jets Interest in Chris Ivory is a Microcosm of Goodness
Brian Bassett , TheJetsBlog.com
What can I say? I love that the Jets are interested in Chris Ivory, but it goes much further than just adding another running back to this roster and I will get to that in a little bit. While nothing is done as of yet with the Saints running back, according to multiple reports it seems as if a deal with the Saints is an expected outcome and if so, it’s an outcome that is a sign of good things to come in the next week for the Jets and their fans when the NFL Draft starts next Thursday night.
Everyone knew that the Jets were going to have a lot of changes to make to their roster this offseason and the big question was whether or not the Jets could fill all the holes adequately before the season starts. To me, the move to add Chris Ivory is a perfect microcosm of the good and sensible moves the Jets have been making over the last two months.
As far as what it does for the Jets at the running back position? The move would give them everything they need as they head into the season and do so at a bargain compared to what they would need to “spend” in the draft to get a similarly talented player to Ivory in LeVeon Bell or the like. While it’s true that I really liked what I saw from Bilal Powell in 2012, there has been a lot of speculation that the Jets were still serious about upgrading the running game through the draft. Chris Ivory would be a perfect early down compliments to Mike Goodson and give the Jets a battering ram who can gain signficant yards after contract, a scat back with explosive breakaway speed and then the versatile backup who could be used (albeit to lesser effect) in either capacity or to help break tendencies of defenses.
So beyond what the jets might gain from adding a player like Chris Ivory for a day three draft pick, why do I like this move? I like this move because it’s an indication that the jets have made some moves in the last month that truly allow them much more flexibility as they enter the draft. Signing players like Calvin Pace, Dawan Landry, Antwan Barnes and Antonio Garay aren’t the kind of moves that will be debated by Smith and Bayless on ESPN First Take, but they’re the kind of moves that allow the jets to not reach for players in the draft. They’re the kind of moves that allow the jets to be confident in the way they set up their board and take the players who will either be the most talented, were best help the team when it comes their time to pick.
Could the Jets still stand to upgrade at outside linebacker? Could the Jets still draft a safety? Could the Jets upgrade their defensive tackle spot? Could the Jets even add a running back if they traded for Ivory? Absolutely they could do any of those things, but the cost of doing so won’t be dictated by who the team has or doesn’t have on the roster at present. The Jets still have some holes to fill next week on their roster, but the urgency and the number of them has been greatly decreased based on some very strategic and modest signings.