Sunday, April 21, 2013
Time was right for Jets to exit 'Revis Island'
By James Walker
The New York Jets were not going to the playoffs this season with or without star cornerback Darrelle Revis. That is why moving Revis on Sunday was the right move for New York.
The Jets traded Revis to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a 2013 first-round pick and a conditional third- or fourth-round pick in 2014. The compensation is a little light for a player of Revis' caliber. I would have preferred New York to get at least two picks -- if not three -- in this year's draft. However, Revis is coming off a season-ending knee injury and entering the final year of his contract. Revis was no longer part of New York's plans, and everyone knew it. The Buccaneers had a lot of leverage in this negotiation.
It was time for the Jets and Darrelle Revis to part ways.
Mild compensation issues aside, this was the perfect time for the Jets to get off "Revis Island." New York selected Revis in the first round in 2007 and got his prime years. Revis, who will be 28 in July, may or may not be the same player he was before his knee injury as he enters the second phase of his career. But that is Tampa Bay’s problem now. The Buccaneers also announced a six-year contract extension for Revis, which is something the Jets simply could not afford when Revis became a free agent next year.
The Jets have always had a contentious relationship with their best player. New York and Revis had three contract disputes in six years -- one as a rookie in 2007, another in 2010 and one more in 2012. The Jets gave in the first two times but held their ground last year. That turned out to be the beginning of the end for the Revis era in New York.
Both sides were past the point of no return, and it was time to move on. Revis will go down as one of the Jets’ all-time great players, but they won’t miss him much this year. New York has a Pro Bowl cornerback in Antonio Cromartie and former first-round pick Kyle Wilson proved last year that he’s ready to be a starter. New York was second in pass defense in 2012 without Revis for 13 games. Only Buffalo Bills receiver Steve Johnson had a 100-yard receiving game against the Jets last season.
New York's pass defense will be fine without Revis in 2013. But the rest of the team has a lot of holes to fill under first-year general manager John Idzik. With two picks in the first round on Thursday, the Jets have a good opportunity to start anew.