- Rich Cimini, ESPN New York Jets reporter
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Notes and observations on the Jets and the NFL:
1. DUSTIN THE WIND: Four of the Jets' six first-round picks between 2006 and 2009 have been rewarded with new contracts. The exceptions: Vernon Gholston (no explanation needed) and Dustin Keller. They have no immediate plans to make Keller the fifth. The Jets are taking a wait-and-see approach with the talented tight end, and they're planning to wait until after the season, when Keller's rookie contract expires. Keller isn't making a stink, but he'd like the security of a long-term extension. He deserves it, but with the change in direction on offense, the Jets want to see how he fits into Tony Sparano's system before making that kind of commitment. If Keller has a big year, he'll get a new deal or get slapped with the franchise tag. If not, they'll probably let him walk. And that would be too bad.
2. MONEY NEVER SLEEPS: Several other Jets are entering their final year, namely RB Shonn Greene, RG Brandon Moore, LG Matt Slauson and DT Mike DeVito. They also have a lot of players on one-year contracts -- LB Bryan Thomas, S LaRon Landry, S Yeremiah Bell, LB Aaron Maybin and WR Chaz Schilens. In other words, GM Mike Tannenbaum will be awfully busy next offseason.
3. BEAT THE CLOCK: One of Sparano's points of emphasis is tempo; he wants the offense to play fast, fast, fast. Got me to wonder how his offenses performed in Miami. In fact, the Dolphins had the second slowest offense in the AFC last season, averaging one play every 29.46 seconds. A methodical offense isn't necessarily a bad offense. The Steelers and Texans -- playoff teams -- also ranked among the slowest three offenses. The Jets finished ninth at 28.72 seconds.
4. STUNT MAN: Watching daredevil Nik Wallenda walk a tightrope across Niagara Falls on Friday night, I couldn't help but wonder if that's how Mark Sanchez will feel all season.
5. DEFENSIVE SHIFT: Nice observation by ESPN.com AFC East blogger James Walker, noting the shift toward 4-3 defenses in the division. The Patriots mixed in some 4-3 last season, the Bills and Dolphins are implementing the 4-3 and, as everybody knows by now, the Jets used it a lot in minicamp. The question is, how much will the teams use it against each other? Defenses are playing a lot of nickel and dime packages because of the growth of spread offenses, replacing LBs with DBs. The Jets are the only AFC East team planning to take an old-school approach, emphasizing run over pass. Even the Dolphins, with new coach Joe Philbin and his West Coast offense, figure to throw more often.
6. THAT'S SHOWBIZ: "That's My Boy," an Adam Sandler comedy that includes three scenes with Rex Ryan, is getting universally hammered by critics. The metascore on IMDB.com, which combines 22 film reviews, rates "That's My Boy" a 27 on a scale of 100. In football parlance, that would be akin to getting beat by the Patriots, 45-3. New York Post critic Kyle Smith even rips Ryan, saying he "acts about as well as Tim Tebow throws a football." Ouch.
7. EYE IN THE SKY: The NFL has announced it will release coaches film to fans, as part of its "Game Rewind" package on NFL.com. (Yes, there's a subscription fee.) This is a cool thing for hardcore fans and sports writers who love the Xs-and-Os aspect to the game. Coaches film -- a.k.a. "All-22" -- shows what you don't see on TV, all 22 players on every play. In other words, there's no place for players to hide. Everybody will be watching, all the time.
8. SILVER LINING: If Darrelle Revis decides to stage a training-camp holdout, it might not be the worst thing in the world for the Jets. It would take some of the spotlight away from Sanchez and Tebow. Hey, I'm trying to take the half-full approach here.
9. CRIME DOESN'T PAY: Something tells me Adam (Pacman) Jones isn't going to receive an $11.7 million appearance fee from the NFL to speak at the rookie symposium. That's would it would take to cover the amount he was ordered to pay victims in a 2007 Las Vegas shooting.
10. R & R: Now that most of the minicamps are over, the NFL is about to get very quiet. Good. We could all use a break.
Notes and observations on the Jets and the NFL:1. DUSTIN THE WIND: Four of the Jets' six first-round picks between 2006 and 2009 have been rewarded with new contracts.