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Thursday, January 24, 2013
Jets introduce new GM John Idzik

By Jane McManus
ESPNNewYork.com

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Amid reports that star cornerback Darrelle Revis could be on the trading block, new New York Jets general manager John Idzik held his introductory news conference Thursday.

John Idzik
New Jets GM John Idzik declined to discuss the situations of Darrelle Revis and Mark Sanchez at his introductory news conference on Thursday.

But whether it was the fate of Revis or that of quarterback Mark Sanchez, Idzik wouldn't lend substance to reports that he was already considering roster changes.

"I can't comment really," Idzik said. "I'm literally hours into the building. That we're going to save for our evaluation process."

Pessimistic about his chances of re-signing Revis before he becomes a free agent next year, owner Woody Johnson is open to trading the cornerback, a person familiar with Johnson's thinking said Wednesday night.

Given the opportunity to throw his support behind Revis after Idzik's news conference, Johnson did not.

"I'm going to go right back to (Idzik)," Johnson said. "I think he had the same answer that I would have. First of all we don't discuss contracts, but second of all, you got to give John a chance to really do what he talked about. He has to go through and evaluate what he has and how that plays into what he and Rex talked about in terms of strategy for the future."

After making the announcement that Idzik had the job, the team made it clear that he would have the final say on all personnel matters. Given the Jets' salary-cap issues, Idzik's degree in scientific mathematics could come in handy.

"We're going to develop those plans in the days to come," Idzik said. "I never saw the cap situation here as a hindrance. It's something you research, pour through and evaluate."

Idzik bristled at the idea that he is primarily a cap guy and detailed a childhood around the game given his father's coaching jobs, which included two years as the Jets' quarterbacks coach.

"Football is at the root of who I am," Idzik said.

After spending the last three years in Seattle, Idzik is taking on his first GM job. It comes after reports that the Jets couldn't give the job away given the on- and off-the-field difficulties of the last two seasons. Asked about the Jets' "circus," Idzik said it didn't come up in the interview process and that wasn't how he saw the team.

"There seem to be a lot of misperceptions," Idzik said.

One of those might be seeing coach Rex Ryan as a liability. Clearly, Johnson backs Ryan and kept him despite losing or firing all three coordinators and former general manager Mike Tannenbaum. Idzik said he hoped to lead a collaborative environment, in which he signed off on collectively agreed upon decisions.

"I look at Rex Ryan as a very accomplished coach," Idzik said, and then he turned to Ryan, who was in the front row for the news conference.

"I look forward to our time together, I'm excited about it," Idzik said. "To me, that was a plus."

"And I feel that here in New York, that we're going to be all-in, all together."

Johnson said he hoped Idzik's hire would lead to a championship.

Idzik went to Alabama for the Senior Bowl this week and spent time with Jets front office personnel Terry Bradway and Scott Cohen, "so we can hit the ground running when we get back," he said.

The next step for Idzik is a review of the current roster with an eye toward the salary-cap issues. He plans to create a short-term plan to manage the salary cap before the draft. He seems to think the team's problems are manageable despite outside perceptions.

"I don't deal much with perception, I deal with reality," Idzik said. "And the reality is this is one of the most fabulous infrastructures you can have."

Information from ESPNNewYork.com's Rich Cimini was used in this report.