Ellis trial could effect residency in U.S.

July, 11, 2011
7/11/11
10:44
AM ET

Kenrick Ellis isn't a U.S. citizen, and a finding of guilty in his pending felony assault case could have wider implications, reports Rich Cimini, aka the hardest working beat writer on vacation. The Jets' third-round selection could ultimately face deportation if convicted in a trial that has been moved back to November 28. Read the entire story here.

The Jets have become more willing under coach Rex Ryan to take a chance on players with legal baggage, and the team knew about Ellis' upcoming trial stemming from an altercation, the details of which are still pretty murky. But if the Jamaica native is guilty, it could violate a morality clause of his permanent resident status.

A couple of things factor into any risk assessment when it comes to a 6-foot-5, 345-pound nose tackle. Ellis could be a possible replacement for Kris Jenkins, who had two season-ending ACL injuries as a Jet, was released in February.

But, given the NFL lockout, the Jets have yet to get any of the rookies in, meaning that valuable time is lost getting fresh players worked out and up to speed in the system.

In the best case, Ellis pleads to a lesser charge or is not convicted and can contribute to the Jets 3-4 defense for years to come.

Jane McManus has covered New York sports since 1998 and began covering football just before Brett Favre's stint with the Jets. Her work has appeared in Newsday, USA Today, The Journal News and The New York Times. Follow Jane on Twitter.

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