Jets should give Stanton his freedom

March, 22, 2012
3/22/12
2:14
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The Jets have a quarterback controversy, but it's not what you think. It involves recently-signed backup Drew Stanton, who understandably wants to be released or traded in the aftermath of the Tim Tebow trade.

Stanton signed last Friday to be the No. 2 quarterback; that's the primary reason he chose the Jets over other opportunities with the Bucs and Chiefs, among others. Sure, he received a $500,000 signing bonus on a one-year deal, but he took the job because it represented a promotion after years of being the Lions' No. 3.

When the Jets landed Tebow, they immediately declared him the No. 2. Stanton? Sorry, kid, maybe you can stick as our No. 3. GM Mike Tannenbaum said he'd assess the situation in the coming weeks. Stanton is none too happy about this turn of events.

Do him a favor, just release him now. The backup jobs around the league are filling up, so a prompt pink slip would allow him to find another job. The Jets, of course, would have to eat the $500,000, which would stay on their salary cap. Oops.

This is an awkward situation, and I don't believe the Jets purposely tried to screw Stanton, but they promised him a specific role and demoted him before he had the chance to take a snap. Obviously, they don't have to do anything -- a contract is a contract -- but the good-faith move would be to part ways.

Imagine that: A marriage shorter than the Kardashian-Humphries union.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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