Keller: Contract talk 'hasn't moved much'

June, 11, 2012
6/11/12
7:22
PM ET
Darrelle Revis isn't the only player on the Jets with a newsworthy contract situation.

Tight end Dustin Keller, entering the final year of his rookie contract, wants the security of a long-term extension, but he said Monday night the Jets have yet to make an offer.

"We've tried to approach them, but it really hasn't moved too much," Keller said at his charity bowling event in Manhattan.

Keller, due to make $3 million this season, said his goal this offseason is to secure a new deal. He wants to be a Jet "for a long time." He said the lack of activity is "a little frustrating," but he added that he's still hopeful a deal can be struck by the start of the season. He indicated he has no plans to stage a holdout.

The Jets have a track record for re-upping with their young, core players before they enter their final year -- i.e. Nick Mangold, David Harris and D'Brickashaw Ferguson.

"Obviously, I'd like to be one of those core guys .... that's going to help them win," said Keller, who last season became the first tight end in 25 years to lead the team in receptions. "I feel I am, but still you want to get that contract done. That pretty much makes it official."

The tight-end market was rattled last week with the news that the Patriots' Rob Gronkowski signed a six-year, $53 million deal -- and he had two years left on his rookie contract.

Keller said he's happy for Gronkowski, but he wouldn't say if that deal gives him any additional leverage. It's the possible the Jets could let Keller play out his contract and hit him with the franchise tag. This year's tag for a tight end was $5.5 million.

Keller is Mark Sanchez's longest-tenured target, and he'd hate to break up a good thing.

"His weapons are always changing; that makes it tough on him," Keller said. "He always has new receivers, new guys he's throwing to constantly. You want a constant, somebody who has been there, done that. That would be ideal."

Keller was hoping to raise about $150,000 at his annual bowling event at Chelsea Piers, which drew about a dozen teammates. Part of the proceeds go to Keller's foundation, which raises money for underprivileged kids.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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