Sunday, January 1, 2012
Dolphins look to 'shatter' Jets
By Rich Cimini
Happy New Year. Some thoughts and observations on the first day of 2012:
1. This is what the Dolphins are reduced to -- trying to make it a miserable offseason for the Jets. "As a Dolphin, that's all you want to do is shatter their dreams," Dolphins DL Kendall Langford told the Miami Herald. The Dolphins eliminate their longtime rivals with a win Sunday in Miami.
2. Two Jets changed agents recently. NT Sione Pouha, heading into free agency, hired Brian Mackler and James Ivler of the New York-based Sportstars group. RG Brandon Moore, who has one year left on his contract, changed to Deryk Gilmore of the Chicago-based Priority Sports -- an indication he might be looking for a new deal this offseason.
3. I talked to Jets OL Bill Callahan and asked him to evaluate RT Wayne Hunter. "Wayne would be the first to tell you he wants to do better," Callahan said. "He's had a few bumps in the road." Bumps? Try Himalayas. Hunter has a $2.45 million base salary next season; he'll probably have to take a pay cut if he remains.
4. If Colts beat the Jaguars (very possible), and the Rams lose to the 49ers (very, very possible), the Rams get the No. 1 overall pick. The Colts would be out of luck -- QB Andrew Luck -- and it could change the dynamic of the Peyton Manning situation.
5. Now that the Lions are playoff bound, the Bills have the longest playoff drought in the league. They haven't made it since 1999. Did they use leather helmets in those days?
6. The Jets (namely Brian Schottenheimer and Mark Sanchez) get ripped for not trying enough long passes. Well, consider Drew Brees. He broke Dan Marino's yardage record last week, yet he's averaging only 7.64 air yards per attempts, fifth-fewest in the league, according to ESPN Stats & Information. It's not how far you throw, it's how well you throw.
7. Here's a positive Jets stat: They've intercepted or defended 10 passes in the end zone, tied for the third-highest in the league, per ESPN Stats. What does it mean? I'm not really sure.
8. Jets WR Santonio Holmes, a team captain, blew off the media this week -- a week dominated by Schottenheimer stories. I guess that's Holmes' way of sending a message.
9. Meanwhile, G Matt Slauson received the Eskenazi Award, presented annually by the beat reporters to the most media-friendly player on the Jets. It's named after former longtime New York Times beat writer Gerald Eskenazi. Slauson got it because he gets it.
10. Nice nugget from Connor Orr of the Star-Ledger: Dustin Keller is set to become the first tight end since Mickey Shuler in 1985 to lead the Jets in receptions. Good timing for Keller, who's in line for a lucrative extension as he heads into the final year of his rookie contract.