How soon did Darrelle Revis’ season-ending injury play into Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik knowing there might have been an opportunity to make a play for him?
According to Dominik himself, it was immediate. After Revis suffered the injury last year, Dominik began to think through the possibility that the Jets could trade Revis and Dominik did what he could to be in the right place to acquire him.
“Quite frankly, it started when he blew out his knee,” Dominik told NFL Network. “I actually went into our director of player personnel Dennis Hickey’s office and I said, ‘That could be a reason why he could leave the Jets.’ Because I knew what his contract situation was, and so when he hurt his knee, I thought, ‘That’s going to be an out possibility’.”
Dominik was right and the Jets ended up working closely with the Buccaneers to come up with compensation to trade the All-Pro cornerback. Dominik is pleased with what he got in return for his risky investment. “I think we’re getting the No. 1 cornerback in the National Football League,” Dominik said.
Brian Bassett, theJetsBlog.com
No one will know the truth of it, but Dominik and Revis’ agents have worked on blockbuster deals before, most notably the Vincent Jackson contract from 2012. As the story unfolded, it was obvious that the Bucs were the team who was willing to feed information to the media anonymously about their interest in Revis and how the Jets were holding up the team’s ability to work out a framework for the deal.
As Dominik now admits, he was working on a framework back in September, and it’s hard to imagine that he didn’t have some general structure worked out already with Revis’ camp, and which would have emboldened the Revis camp in their dealings with the Jets.
Either way, we’ve all moved on. The Jets traded their best player and got some help on the defensive side of the ball to help cushion the fall of Revis leaving. Revis got what he wanted in his new deal, and Dominik got the player he was admittedly looking for since the injury occurred.
John Idzik has made it clear that the Jets would look to field roster spots this season through undrafted rookie free agents. Former Tennessee WR Zach Rogers went undrafted and the Jets added to the competition at one of the team’s depth-challenged units … we’ll take a look at Rogers in this post.
Height: 6’0″ Weight: 182 lbs
Hands: 9 3/8″ Arm Length: 30 1/2″
40 Yard Dash: 4.49 Vertical Leap: 32″
BIOGRAPHY: Rogers grew up in Nashville, and was a touted NCAA prospect. He was selected to many awards list and was named his region’s top scholar-athlete as well as being selected to the Knoxville News-Sentinel’s Top 20 Prospects in Tennessee following his senior season in high school. At Tennessee, his playing time increased over his career, starting with three receptions his freshman year, 14 in his sophomore and junior seasons and then 32 receptions with 491 yards and seven touchdowns as a senior. Rogers had to compete for playing time against the likes of Cordarelle Patterson, Justin Hunter and Da’Rick Rogers (before he transferred).
STRENGTHS: Rogers’ biggest strength is his hands and his smarts. The former Vol has a solid release at the line and great awareness of the sidelines and defenders. He can make tough receptions look easy, even passes that force him to change direction or to extend out of his body range. Rogers has good short-area quickness and footwork that give him a deceptive quickness in the open field that allows him to make plays and gain some extra yardage after the catch. Rogers thrived in the slot and displays a willingness to cross the middle of the field and can hold onto the ball after contact.
WEAKNESSES: At just 182 pounds, Rogers will need to add some more weight for fear of lacking size to not be re-routed when jammed by receivers. In his routes, he can have some trouble with his footwork and the fluidity in his breaks, making it easier for defenders to take him out of the play. Rogers can be a solid slot player because of some of the concerns about his athleticism. Rogers will need to improve his blocking in the NFL.
CONCLUSION: The best way for Zach Rogers to make an NFL roster is as a slot receiver. The Jets have some talent at that spot already, between Jeremy Kerley and then last year’s draftee Jordan White, so Rogers will have to demonstrate how he can help an offense, but more importantly how he can help on special teams. Rogers doesn’t mind contact, but he needs to become more physical to play the slot in the NFL and to beat blockers on punts and kicks.
Rogers has great hands and has proven to be fearless in making receptions in the middle of the field … that’s not to be forgotten, but even for a roster that doesn’t seem to have the same depth as other areas, Rogers is going to have to scratch and claw to make cutdowns. That said, should Rogers not make the active roster come fall, he would be a great candidate for the practice squad as a potential investment player for the Jets.
Mike Goodson will have his pre-trial hearing on June 12, at Morris County Superior Court.
Goodson was arrested early Friday morning and charged with possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, unlawful possession of handgun, possession of a loaded handgun and possession of hollow-point ammunition.
This falls during Jets minicamp, as the team has scheduled an open practice that day at their Florham Park facility.
Mike Goodson’s status with the Jets is uncertain, but what’s not is the State of New Jersey’s stance on hollow point ammunition. Rich Cimini of ESPN NY spoke with a professor at Seton Hall on the subject.
New Jersey also has some of the strictest sentencing requirements in the nation for possession of hollow point bullets. If convicted of the charge, Goodson could face a five-year mandatory minimum sentence according to Jenny Carroll, an associate professor of law at Seton Hall Law School, where she teaches criminal law. The gun charge could be dropped for either Goodson or Evans if the police determine who it belonged to, but Carroll said both occupants of a vehicle can still be found guilty of charges relating to one gun or hollow point bullets under a clause called constructive possession.
The NFL mandates that each team has a preseason meeting with players where team officials and law enforcement go over local gun laws. The NFL discourages all players from owning guns but stipulates that all players who do choose gun ownership must have them legally registered.
Brian Bassett, theJetsBlog.com
That’s pretty serious stuff. The point here is to show what is at stake for Goodson, not get into a whole debate about politics. Obviously, five-year prison sentences are not handed out without a lot of court proceedings, so that should be kept in mind in terms of how long this legal process might be.
While it wasn’t always perfect for the first year football player Hayden Smith of the Jets, the tight end has come a long way in just a year.
“It’s not even close,” Smith told Brian Costello of the New York Post on coming back for a second season. “The main thing is not having to learn about the game of football and actually being able to concentrate on learning the offense. It takes a lot off your plate. It definitely allows things to be a lot slower and come to you a lot quicker.”
“It was overwhelming at times,” said the former professional rugby player from Australia. “You had to try to break down the most important bits and relate that and become comfortable with that. Most of that really has sunk in now. I’m in a much more comfortable spot.”
Granted, it is Smith’s second offense in as many seasons. Last year Smith was charged with learning Tony Sparano’s system, this year it is Marty Morhinweg’s West Coast system that thrived in Philadelphia for years.
“I’ve really enjoyed it,” Smith said of getting to know Morhinweg’s system. “Whether it’s me being more comfortable with football in general or Marty’s offense, I’ve found it a light year’s difference to my experience last year. I’m thoroughly enjoying it. I really enjoy the offense itself as do all the guys.”
While he enjoys it all the more, Hayden Smith knows that he’s got to remained focused and executing as best as he can to make the squad again in 2013.
“I’ve got to approach it the same way I did last year and that was just to get better every day,” he said. “I need to continue to get better than I am today tomorrow and give myself the best chance really to compete for a position. There’s obviously opportunity there. It’s just a matter of what you do with that opportunity.”
Brian Bassett, theJetsBlog.com
With Keller gone, there’s an opening for some of the tight ends who are on the roster. I know the Jets were serious about adding a player through free agency or through the draft, but I like the upside that the Jets have in guys like Josh Baker and Hayden Smith and unless the Jets sign a player who is an undoubted starter or pickup a similar player right at cutdowns, there will be another opportunity for Smith in 2013.
Since Smith is still eligible for the practice squad, he might be made to start the season there and then chip in on the 53 man roster as the roster shifts over the course of the season. Hayden Smith showed promise in his first year, but there’s still plenty of room for growth. He’s an excellent athlete and he’s a willing blocker, and his speed will improve with his knowing where he needs to be on the field and not having to think about it. The Jets will be closely evaluating the tight end spot during spring practices, and Hayden Smith could be a key piece to their plans this summer.