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May 6, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Rich Cimini

Rich Cimini
  (1:00 PM)

Hi, everybody. Thanks for pulling up a chair, so to speak, and joining the chat. Lots of topics to discuss in the locked-out, post-draft world of the Jets. Let's get started.

Mike (Boca Raton, FL)

Hey Rich,What do you hear about the felony charges against Kenrick Ellis? Is there an expected outcome? Any plea negotiations? Will he be available come training camp?Thanks!

Rich Cimini
  (1:04 PM)

All good questions, Mike. Obviously, the Jets wouldn't have picked him if they weren't confident of a favorable outcome, but as of right now, this is scheduled for a jury trial July 12 in Hampton Va. Circuit Court. Every man is innocent until proven guilty, although I've noticed some Judge Judy wannabes out there predicting he will be deemed not guilty because it was self defense. I prefer to let the legal process play out. He was indicted by a grand jury in March; evidently they found enough evidence to proceed to a trial.

Markus Farmer (Pittsburgh,PA)

If I had to choose a player on offense that the jets could really use would definitely be another WR or QB..reason why I say this is because the Jets don't seem to have that elite Quarterback just yet..and Sanchez is not one of them do you agree?

Rich Cimini
  (1:06 PM)

Dude, have you watched the Jets the last two Januarys? Sanchez is 4-2 in the playoffs. No, he hasn't reached the Super Bowl, but at least he's knocking on the door. A lot of good QBs don't even get within knocking distance.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

What did you think of the Jets selecting Alabama QB Greg McElroy in the 7th Round?

Rich Cimini
  (1:08 PM)

It was a good choice. I think he was projected to go as early as the 5th, so the Jets got good value. He has all the intangibles. The question is, is his arm good enough? We won't know until camp, whenever that is. To me, his arm looked decent, not overpowering.

Greg (North Jersey)

Is Steve Weatherford really not returning?

Rich Cimini
  (1:09 PM)

I'd say the chances of him returning are remote. I mean, they decided in early March not to give him an RFA tender; that was a pretty telling indication right there.

Evan (Farleigh Dickinson University )

We've been hearing a lot of Jets chatter surrounding big names, but not necessarily big talent anymore wide receivers, (Moss, Ochocinco, Owens). Is it a probability that the Jets would sign any of these WR's. Should we, as Jet fans, want them to sign any of these WR?

Rich Cimini
  (1:11 PM)

Personally, I think Moss and Ochocinco are done. Kaput. Moss isn't worth the aggravation. The Jets would be absolutely insane to sign him. Insane! Owens, I think, can still play. He's a handful, too, but he usually plays hard. I wouldn't rule him out if the Jets lose Edwards or Holmes.

Steve (Bilitzky)

What type of role do you expect Jeremy Kerley to have in the offense this coming season?

Rich Cimini
  (1:13 PM)

Excellent question, Steve. Wish I knew the answer. If I knew the WR depth chart, I could give an answer, but there are big question marks. He's a slot receiver, usually Cotchery's position. If J-Co is the 3 again, I could see Kerley as the 4. He's very quick and looks very fluid. Some scouts I trust tell me good things about him. He'll be your new Brad Smith, if the old Brad Smith leaves.

Rich Cimini
  (1:13 PM)

Excellent question, Steve. Wish I knew the answer. If I knew the WR depth chart, I could give an answer, but there are big question marks. He's a slot receiver, usually Cotchery's position. If J-Co is the 3 again, I could see Kerley as the 4. He's very quick and looks very fluid. Some scouts I trust tell me good things about him. He'll be your new Brad Smith, if the old Brad Smith leaves.

Steve (Flushing)

How serious are these assault charges against Kenrick Ellis? Is there a significant chance that he will be convicted?

Rich Cimini
  (1:15 PM)

All I know is that he was indicted by a grand jury in March and is due to stand trial for a class-3 felony in July. To me, that's serious. I'm not a lawyer, so I'm not going to make predictions. The Jets aren't dumb, and I know they investigated thoroughly, but there's some risk involved.

Josette (Long Island)

Rich, what are the team's (and your) expectations this year for Big Vlad?

Rich Cimini
  (1:17 PM)

Right now, I'd say he's the man to beat at RT. This lockout is really hurting guys like Vlad and Kyle Wilson, the second-year players. If Vlad doesn't work out, I absolutely would not rule out a return by Damien Woody.

Sean C (Glenmont, NY)

Hi, Rich. Were you surprised that Tanny made six picks in the draft? Also do you know if the Jets tried to move up in the first or second round to acquire a certain player. Once Cameron Jordan fell into the low 20s, I thought Tanny was going to move up to get him based on what you reported about the Jets being very high on him.

Rich Cimini
  (1:18 PM)

Tanny said he expressed some "cursory" interest in moving up. Yes, I know for a fact they really liked Jordan, so I'd have to guess either him or Phil taylor was their target.

Max (Illinois)

Rich, what does the powell pick say about the team's feelings about McKnight? I was shocked the team drafted an RB just a year after trading up to get McKnight. Also, does this mean the team will move forward with 4 RBs plus the Terminator? That seems a bit excessive.

Rich Cimini
  (1:20 PM)

You were shocked? Imagine how McKnight felt. At Jets West, he was pretty candid, saying he was "pissed and motivated." Yes, I think they'll keep all 4 RBs, plus Conner. Yeah, it is excessive, but the Jets always like to look a year ahead. LT will be gone, leaving Greene (contract year in '12) and question marks.

Evan (New York)

Hi Rich, great job on your Erik Ainge piece a ways back. Is it fair to say that, when the Jets drafted Ainge, they had no idea about his drug/addiction issues?

Rich Cimini
  (1:21 PM)

Thanks, Evan, I appreciate that. I asked Erik if the Jets ever asked him about it during the pre-draft interview process, and he said no. to the best of his knowledge, he never failed a drug test at Tenn because he had a prescription for the painkillers.

Tone Time (NJ)

Rich, Great work as always. I know you wrote that Kenrick Ellis faces up to 20 years and I know the Post columnist quoted a source as saying the case won't go to trial. But have you talked to any legal experts or other people about what type of penalty he's realistically facing? Doubt he'd get the maximum and doubt the case is just going to disappear.

Rich Cimini
  (1:24 PM)

Unlike my Post colleague, I'm not going to try this case in the papers. Naturally, you're going to get the pro-Ellis side when you talk to people in Ellis' camp. As I said earlier, he was indicted by a grand jury and is scheduled for trial in July. Is he going to get 20 years if convicted? I seriously doubt it, but who really knows how it's going to turn out? Let's let the legal process play out.

kev (nyc)

mo wilk was a projected top 10 pick by kiper in 2012. this kid kenrick ellis looks like a beast on game film. your thoughts on bypassing a rush OLB (ayers/reed/heyward) and getting younger on the DL, where age was certainly an issue?

Rich Cimini
  (1:27 PM)

OLB still is a need, but I was never sold on Ayers and Reed at No. 30. Ayers is going to be a solid pro, but based on the scouts I talked to, I don't think he's going to be a double-digit sacker. Wilkerson was the right choice given the way the board fell. Heyward is going to be a solid player, but he's a two-down run stuffer; he's not going to get many sacks. Wilkerson, at least, has the potential to develop into a good pass rusher.

Ben (London)

Hi Rich, great work at Jets West. Having failed to acquire a pass rusher via the draft, what's the Jets plan at that position? I would be a bit nervous if we just stood pat with our current personnel.

Rich Cimini
  (1:30 PM)

Well, Ben, get ready to be nervous. There isn't much out there in the free-agent market, so it looks like Tannenbaum will have to swing a trade if they want to acquire a veteran OLB. If not, you go with Pace, BT and Westerman, hoping Wilkerson can give you something on 3rd down. if that fails, blitz like hell.

Sal (San Diego)

Hi Rich!...Thanks for the in depth coverage you gave us on the draft...question about draft pick Kerley...I was reading that there is already "polish" to his receiver skills and he is a very good return man. As crazy as this may sound, do you suspect that in the long run, he could possibly be a better option for us than Brad Smith given that Smith is more of kick off and wild cat specialist and not much of a receiver? Perhaps Kerley can bring more to the table than Smith does?

Rich Cimini
  (1:33 PM)

Thanks, Sal. Actually, it's not so crazy. Kerley has the ability to contribute as a receiver. Remember, Smith came to the Jets as a QB and had to learn the WR position. That isn't easy. So, yeah, I'd say Kerley has more upside as a WR, but it'll be hard to match what Smith does as a Wildcat QB and KOR. He has made a LOT of huge plays for the Jets over the years, and I don't think you can assume a kid out of college will be able to match that.

Adam (NYC)

Rich, was a bit disappointed they Jets drafted Scotty McKnight, when it appeared likely that he would not be drafted by any other team, and we could (seemingly) easily sign him as an undrafted free agent. Did the team draft him just to pacify Sanchez?

Rich Cimini
  (1:34 PM)

There's no doubt in my mind that Sanchez factored into it. I talked to a GM from another team that was surprised the Jets drafted him because everybody assumed they'd get him as an UDFA. I mean, the Jets drafted a 5-9 WR in the fifth round, so they didn't absolutely have to have a 5-11 WR in the 7th.

Lou (Woodside)

Rich, you've never been known for your ability to admit your mistakes, so can you explain how it was acceptable for you, a member of the media acting in official capacity, to call a Jets draft pick a "druggie" on Twitter?

Rich Cimini
  (1:35 PM)

Maybe you didn't see it, Lou, but I did apologize on twitter.

David (Paramus)

Rich- Thanks for doing this and keeping us well informed on all things Jets. Is there a potential problem with the Jets not letting their assistant coaches interview elsewhere? It is my understanding that the Jets are only compelled to do so if the new position is a clear cut promotion, but do you thnk there could be an effect (even though Rex says he has the best staff in the league)? Thanks

Rich Cimini
  (1:38 PM)

Thanks, David. I'm assuming you're alluding to the Callahan/Tenn situation, which broke right after the season. The rule is, a team can block an asst coach from interviewing elsewhere UNLESS it's for a HC position. All other moves are considered lateral. Callahan's move to Tenn would've been lateral by definition. There are two ways to look at it ... Pro-Asst coach: Rex is risking with staff morale because he's prohibiting asst's from seeking employment elsewhere. Pro Rex: If an asst coach signs a contract, he should honor his contract to the team. And Callahan has a contract with the Jets.

wvJETSfan (West Virginia)

Rich, now that we have heard a little bit out of Edwards about a "hometown discount" and we heard the comments from Santonio what do you think the chances are the jets resign them, also what about Cromartie? Thanks for taking my question. And thanks for covering jets west.

Rich Cimini
  (1:40 PM)

My hunch is that Holmes returns as a RFA and Edwards leaves as a UFA. Edwards appears willing to be flexible, but is he going to accept a below-market deal to stay? I don't think so. Cromartie, I think, stays as a RFA -- if 2010 rules are in place.

IRA (Staten Island)

Rich, Braylon for sounded like i thought he felt. He wants to be back with the Jets. Why can't they give him a deal and wait until 012 to deal with Holmes if the 010 CBA rules are in affect?

Rich Cimini
  (1:43 PM)

This is a valid question, Ira. OK, let's supposed you sign Braylon for 5 yrs/35 mil. Do you think Holmes is gonna be happy with 1 yr/3.5 mil? Then what happens next year? You'd have to sign Holmes for at least as much as Braylon, and then you're talking $14 mil per year for a team that considers itself a run-first offense. Does that make sense? this is a tricky, multi-faceted issue.

Pete (Nashville)

Do you see Vlad Duchasse being able to step in and start this year? I would like to see them bring Woody back in case the kid isn't ready yet.

Rich Cimini
  (1:45 PM)

You're preaching to the choir, Pete. Unless Ducasse blows them away in camp (if there is a camp), I'd bring Woody back -- assuming Woody has recovered from his Achilles' surgery.

Danny (New Jersey)

Hey Rich, It was a pleasure to meet you at the memorablia show in Somerset NJ last month. In talking to Santonio do you think he wants to be a Jet for life and is he Mike T's #1 priority

Rich Cimini
  (1:46 PM)

If Holmes wants to be a Jet for life, he has a funny way of showing it. He's the anti-Braylon when it comes to contract posturing -- not that it means he doesn't want to be a Jet. Santonio, I think, is just playing it coy. He doesn't want to show his cards. And, yes, I think he's the No.1 priority.

big dawg (philly)

The draft tells me if one WR is on the out it's Brad Smith... You read it the same way or am I just wishful thinking BE and SH both come back?

Rich Cimini
  (1:47 PM)

Yeah, I could see Brad Smith on the way out. Even though he has a 2nd round tender as a RFA, that doesn't mean he's a lock to return. The Jets could trade Smith. I know of one team that already is sniffing around Smith.

Douglas (NYC)

Is Greg McElroy guaranteed to be the 3rd QB? Will the Jets simply cut Kellen Clemens and Kevin O'Connell? Any chance they keep one of those two over Brunell?

Rich Cimini
  (1:49 PM)

The Jets have enough QBs to fill 3 rosters. I don't think you can say Mac is guaranteed a spot, but he'd have to be pretty awful not to make it. Brunell will be the No. 2 in large part because of his calming effect on Sanchez. And you know what? I was watching Brunell at Jets West. For an old guy, he still throws a good ball.

neil (nj)

rich, after watching jets west, is the terminator j. connor a legitimate starting fb right now and how good could he be this season, if they play that is?

Rich Cimini
  (1:51 PM)

Oh, he's legit. He has the skills and his one-year "internship" under Richardson will serve him well. Conner doesn't get enough for receiving; he actually has pretty good hands.

Brian (Hazlet, NJ)

In reality what are the chances the Jets actually make a run for Nnamdi Asomugha?

Rich Cimini
  (1:53 PM)

The weekly Nnamdi question ... Here's a different answer. If the 2010 rules are in place, and the Jets are restricted by the Final Four rules, they can't sign Nnamdi if they re-sign Edwards. The rule is, you can sign a UFA unless you lose one. Even then, the first-year salary can't be more than the guy you lost. Other than Edwards, the Jets don't have another UFA that would command that type of money. So I ask you, who would you rather have, Edwards or Asomugha?

matt (new yotk)

How come you always focus on the negative?

Rich Cimini
  (1:55 PM)

If that's how you interpret things, then YOU must be someone who focuses on the negative.

Ben (Fairfield, CT)

Why do people rip mark sanchez, especially your fellow ESPN collegue Matt Williamson who trashes him every week he may not be elite yet but its only going to be his 3rd season.

Rich Cimini
  (1:57 PM)

I had an spirited debate with Williams on a podcast last season. I don't understand why he feels that way, but everyone is entitled to his opinion. Is sanchez an elite passer? Of course not. But does he win? Yes.

Matt B (White Plains)

Are the Jets players at Jets west just working out to stay in shape or are they doing football drills? Also has Sanchez considered trying to get some defensive players to workout with them to get team drills in or has any defensive player on the Jets tried putting something similar to Jets west together?

Rich Cimini
  (1:59 PM)

Very good question, Matt. No, I don't think they considered defensive players at Jets West. They wanted it to be a passing camp strictly. I know Revis has talked about bringing some DBs to Arizona to train with him at his training center, but I don't know if that's happened. Brandon Moore said he and Nick Mangold were going to get together to discuss the possibility of having an OL get-together; they might be waiting for the outcome of the latest court ruling.

Joe (NJ)

Rich, Can we read into anything with the Jets not adding an O lineman in the draft? Think it might mean they are happy with what they have or that might make a push for Woody? Also, was Drew Willy at Jets West?

Rich Cimini
  (1:59 PM)

They're happy with OL, knowing they can call Woody from the bullpen. No Willy at West.

Jason ( Pearl river ny)

thought the draft went ok. I would have liked to have that 2nd round pick to grab a LB.. Which leads me to this question - why grab that RB? he seems like a reach, especially when it really want a position of need. LB are more difficult to get quality that late, but was there no other defensive players ti look at?

Rich Cimini
  (2:01 PM)

Powell wasn't a reach, but one GM told me he's the kind of back you only if you have a need. Obviously, the Jets put a premium on RBs more than most teams.

Adam (New York)

Hi Rich I know wilkerson and Ellis came from smaller schools and dominated the competition but just how much of an i,pact do you expect Ellis /Wilkerson to have in the next 2-3 years.

Rich Cimini
  (2:02 PM)

I wouldn't expect them to have Suh-like rookie years. Ellis will take time because of his small-school background. Wouldn't be surprised if he contributes very little as a rookie.

Adam (New York)

Gun to your head - Will we have football this year?

Rich Cimini
  (2:03 PM)


Luke (North Carolina)

Hey Rich, I enjoy your writing.Could you give summary on how everybody at Jets West is looking? Thanks.

Rich Cimini
  (2:04 PM)

Well, I think Mehta dropped some weight and looked sharp. Cannizzaro looked a step slow. Vrentas always competes hard. Oh, did you mean the players?

Anna (Merrick)

Rich, Tannenbaum has said that Rex gets one draft pick every year. do you know who tat was this year?

Rich Cimini
  (2:05 PM)

Ha! Good question. I'd bet Kenrick Ellis.

Nick (Edison, NJ)

Rich, with the Eagles drafting Alex Henery, it seems that David Akers' time in Philly is over. Do you feel the Jets would have an interest in bringing in Akers, rather than bringing back Nick Folk?

Rich Cimini
  (2:06 PM)

That would be a definite possibility.

Charles D (Bethpage, NY)

Rich, You do any awesome job. Do you think they will go into the season with S. McKnight, will he make the cut?Met Rex at the Book Revue in Huntington, NY and gave him a 1973 yearbook showing his fater. He seemed suprised. Go Jets

Rich Cimini
  (2:07 PM)

My guess is practice squad for McKnight.

Tony B. (Raleigh, NC)

Hi Rich,I loved the Jets West coverage. Jets West shows that while Sanchez might not be one of the top 15 quarterbacks in the NFL skill-wise, he's in the Top 5 percent in the Leadership and Teammate category.Switching gears, do you think that lack of depth at the Safety position is going to hurt the Jets this season (assuming there is a season)? Rahim Moore may not have been good enough to draft 30th, but Leonhard, E. Smith, and Pool alone don't leave a lot of wiggle room should an injury befall one of them. I'm looking at you Jim Leonhard.

Rich Cimini
  (2:08 PM)

Thanks, Tony. I think the Jets are fairly confident they can re-sign Pool and/or Smith. Leonhard seems to be doing well.

Jason (Bmore)

As a Steelers fan, I found it funny that Braylon was working out with Sanchez, but Santonio was nowhere to be found. What a team player the guy is!

Rich Cimini
  (2:08 PM)

A month ago, Holmes said he wouldn't be able to make it because of a family issue.

Steve (Flushing)

Assuming Cromartie is back, do you think Kyle Wilson will have the number three spot

Rich Cimini
  (2:09 PM)


wvJETSfan (West Virginia)

If Ellis's background never becomes a problem was he a steal in the 3rd round???

Rich Cimini
  (2:10 PM)

Yeah ... if he can play. I've heard good things. Massive size, good athlete and plays hard. Not a lot of 350 lb men play hard every snap, but he does, from what I'm told. But it's still a huge leap from Hampton to NFL.

Anthony (NYC)

Rich I know this would be a reach but with the Jets not being able to address the DE/OLB position with the draft, could they bring in a FA like Merriman on an performance base contract? And would it be worth it?

Rich Cimini
  (2:11 PM)

Not sure, but didn't Merriman re-sign with Bills? Plus, his knees are shot.

Rich Cimini
  (2:12 PM)

That's a wrap for me. I think we set a record for most questions in an off-season week. I appreciate that, and the questions were sharp, as always. Thanks and have a great weekend! Rich