Sunday, March 11, 2012
Jets prepare for LaSafety dance
By Rich Cimini
Sunday notes, thoughts and observations on the Jets and the rest of the NFL:
1. Now that the Jets have some cap room to be serious players in free agency, I expect them to show interest in S LaRon Landry. They need a safety and Landry probably is the best one in a market watered down by three franchise tags. The Redskins' former first-round pick (sixth overall in 2007) is coming off two injury-plagued seasons, so maybe his asking price won't be crazy. He's a beast as an in-the-box safety, but there are questions about his coverage ability -- and that's where the Jets need help.
2. Quarterback-turned-analyst Chad Pennington is worth a listen because he makes a lot of sense. The other day, I asked him if the Jets should chase Peyton Manning. His response:
"I don’t think so. I don't think he's the right fit for New York. Both New York teams have their quarterback. For crying out loud, over the next three years, if you knew (Mark Sanchez) would take you to two AFC championship games and an 8-8 record ... come on, now. You'd take that. He's been one or two plays away from the big dance. He's right where he needs to be.
"The key is stability at quarterback, and stability around the quarterback. Look at (Tom) Brady and (Eli) Manning, (Drew) Brees and (Aaron) Rodgers. What's the key? Stability, that's the key."
3. Peyton Manning now has blown off the Jets twice. The first time occurred in 1997, when the Jets owned the No. 1 pick in the draft. He could've been the first Manning in New York, seven years ahead of his brother, but he wanted no part of the Jets and opted to stay in school. I'd say it worked out for him.
4. The folks in the Florham Park bunker are Bronco and Cardinal fans this week. They do not want Manning with the Dolphins in the AFC East. My prediction: He chooses 'Zona.
5. Now that Sanchez has his contract extension, what other players are coming up soon? Players with one year remaining on their current deal: TE Dustin Keller, RB Shonn Greene, RG Brandon Moore, LG Matt Slauson and DT Mike DeVito. Players with two years remaining: CB Darrelle Revis, LB Calvin Pace, RB/KR Joe McKnight and FB John Conner.
6. When Rex Ryan shows up on a college campus for a pro day, it's news. Reporters seek him out, prospects seek him out. The other day at Clemson, former Clemson QB Willy Korn made sure to tap Ryan on the shoulder and introduce himself. "Of course he didn't know who I was, but maybe he'll remember my face," Korn told the Charlotte Observer. For the record, he's a draft-eligible QB from Division II North Greenville (S.C.).
7. Nothing new on the Bart Scott situation. He's had several conversations with Ryan, according to a source, but they've yet to come to any sort of resolution. I can imagine the conversation. Bart: I want to play more. Rex: No, and we want you to take a pay cut. Bart: No way. End of conversation. I still think there's a good chance he's not back with the team.
8. The Redskins gave up three No. 1 picks and a No. 2 pick to move up four spots to draft their new quarterback, presumably Robert Griffin III. Mike Shanahan is a desperate man, having won only one playoff game since John Elway retired after the 1998 season. And now we know why Jeff Fisher picked the Rams over the Dolphins.
9. Peyton's classy farewell press conference in Indianapolis was a rarity in professional sports. How many guys show up to talk about their own firing? Got me to thinking about firings in Jets history. Of all the coaches I've covered, Joe Walton is the only one who agreed to a press conference after his ouster. Rich Kotite also had a presser, but it came before his final game. Of the quarterback firings, the classiest came from Pennington, who spoke via conference call the day after getting unceremoniously dumped in favor of Brett Favre.
10. Hearing positive reports on WR Michael Floyd (Notre Dame). Maybe the Jets should consider him at 16, because their passing game needs a jolt. Consider: Sanchez averaged only 6.5 yards per attempt last season to his wideouts, which ranked 32nd in the league, according to ESPN Stats & Info.