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Jane McManus of The Journal News on the Jets.

Archive for February, 2009

Boomer on Jets

February
28

The good thing about being at the Rangers tonight is that so is former Jets quarterback Boomer Esiason. So I went over to his season seats and invaded his privacy for a few minutes before the second period, and he was very nice about it. Then again, he is a member of the media now with theĀ  Boomer & Carton show on WFAN. Here’s a preview of what you might hear on Monday’s show.

Mike Tannenbaum is a star this time of year,” Esiason said.

Boomer really liked the Lito Sheppard trade and getting Bart Scott in free agency. “They knew they had to have him,” he said.

He said the Brandon Moore renegotiation ended up being a better deal for the Jets, and “You sign a guy you know you are comfortable with.”

The one question mark is the quarterback. Not having one could scare off a Class A wide receiver if one were available. That said, Boomer said if there’s anyone who knows how to win without a great QB, it’s Rex Ryan.

And now, back to hockey.

Posted by Jane McManus on Saturday, February 28th, 2009 at 8:52 pm |
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Updated: Moore to Jets, Part II

February
28

The deal is done, and Brandon Moore sounded pretty laid-back about the 48-hour frenzy of his cut, free agency and now resigning with the Jets as the team’s right guard.

“When it was said and done, who did they come back to?” Moore asked.

Moore said he wasn’t mad even though the Jets flirted and were spurned by another guard, Chris Kemoeatu, who went back to the Steelers.

This is the business part of it Moore said, but he didn’t want to hold out with a grudge and is glad to be back with the team.

“I’ve never had a season where the whole line starts 16 games and the same guys return the next season since I’ve been (with the Jets),” Moore said. “I just sat back today and realized that and got excited about it. To be able to walk in the room with the right tackle (Damien Woody) that I played with for 16 games and a guy next to me that I’ve played next to for three seasons (C Nick Mangold), that stuff goes a long way when it gets down to playing football. I’m really excited about this group of guys. I like the guys in the room and I’m just really excited. I feel real good about the group.”

UPDATE 5:30: The Lito Sheppard trade is complete as well. The cornerback was acquired from the Eagles.

“We acquired a veteran corner with Pro Bowl ability,” said Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan. “This young man has already gone to two Pro Bowls. He is a great athlete with the top end speed that we look for to play that position. We think he can match up with some of the best receivers in the game.”

Posted by Jane McManus on Saturday, February 28th, 2009 at 1:25 pm |
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Updated: It’s official

February
27

Jets GM Mike Tannenbaum was on the call and Bart Scott is signed, and they are close on re-signing Brandon Moore… Did I hear that right? Yes… Moore will be the Jets new right guard.

To paraphrase Tannenbaum, some times you know when people leave they might not come back, but other times you’re cautiously optimistic you’ll see them back. Apparently that’s how they feel about Moore.

With Scott, the terms are six years and $48 million for the 28-year-old linebacker. Of those dollars, $27 million are in the first three years and $22 are guaranteed. Scott wanted to return to Jets coach Rex Ryan, who was Scott’s defensive coordinator in Baltimore. When things got tense this afternoon, Ryan, Scott and defensive coordinator Mike Pettine went shopping at Short Hills mall.

“I’m hoping to get a discount now that I’m mentioning it,” Ryan joked.

If the deal had taken longer, they were going to watch an ultimate fighting DVD.

By the way on Scott, his agent Harold Lewis is a native of Rockland County and used to deliver The Journal News.

Tannenbaum wouldn’t comment on the interest in a trade for Lito Sheppard with the Eagles.

He would say he was excited to see what David Clowney can do this season. “David’s a personal favorite of mine,” Tannenbaum said. “He’s earned the opportunity for more playing time.”

I asked if the Jets D would be Baltimore North and Ryan said, “I think it will in production.”

Update: On the delay between agreeing to terms in the morning and not finalizing the Scott deal until late this afternoon, Lewis said the only holdup was a locked-door meeting he had on behalf of another client, Jason Brown, who went from the Ravens to the Rams today.

Lewis said they did not take the offer back to the Ravens to drive the price up, and at no point was Scott looking to walk away from the deal. Scott wanted to be a Jet to be close to the New York media market with an eye toward his post-football career, and a family visit two weeks ago convinced him the New York area was a place they could call home.

And lastly, the time stamp issue was fixed on the 5:36 post. So I’m accurate until we spring forward.

Posted by Jane McManus on Friday, February 27th, 2009 at 9:16 pm |
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Still no official word on Scott

February
27

Bart Scott, the Raven LB for those Jets fans just waking from their coma, has been inches from a deal with the Jets all day. Various outlets have said it’s done, even naming terms, but it’s not a deal until the Jets admit it.

Being first with a story is nice, but it’s also good to be right. Sometimes when everything is flying out it’s hard to tell the latest rumor from ink drying on a contract.

Not to say I’m always perfect, but Scott is clearly one free agent still in play, and the Jets are still saying Scott is not a Jet.

As for other updates, other Ravens LB Ray Lewis is reportedly not getting the looks in free agency he hoped to, and if you want him to be a Jet, that’s good news. If you don’t, you might say the market is reflecting his actual worth right now.

NFL Network is reporting that the Saints have re-signed former Jet Jonathan Vilma.

Update 6:00: Multiple outlets and my own sources confirm a deal is done, but Jets still haven’t confirmed.

Update 7:53: Sound of crickets chirping. It’s still not O-fish.

8:45: Mike Tannenbaum conference call in 10 minutes…

Posted by Jane McManus on Friday, February 27th, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
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Updated: Baker to Pats

February
27

Chris Baker is a Patriot. Details to come. Sent 10:15 from my iPhone.

Update: Former Jets tight end Chris Baker has signed with the Jets division rival this morning. Baker was a hold out last training camp, but the team came to terms with the veteran a few weeks in.

There were still hard feelings after Baker didn’t get what he felt was promised, and the contract was restructured such that Baker needed to meet performance markers. He did, playing 50 percent of the offensive plays, but the relationship between Baker and the Jets had deteriorated. In many ways, the release was inevitable, but the Jets might value him more when they see him twice a year with New England.

Update II 1:00 p.m.: Bart Scott is not a Jet yet, despite the reports. The team is still working to negotiate the contract with Scott—possibly $8 million per and multiple years—but it is not finalized. Also, the Ray Lewis reports are dead on, I’m getting confirmation that this year the Jets defense could easily be the Baltimore North franchise next season.

Update III 3:45 p.m.: Laveranues Coles is going to visit the Bills according to the Buffalo News. That would mean a TE in Baker with the Patriots, a former QB in Chad Pennington with Miami and LC in Buffalo—hows that for stoking AFC rivalries?

Also, Scott still not a done deal. The Ravens are reportedly raising each counteroffer. I would venture that it’s not a good sign it’s taking this long.

And it’s been widely reported that the team is looking at Chris Kemoeatu to replace Brandon Moore at RG.

Posted by Jane McManus on Friday, February 27th, 2009 at 11:14 am |
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Clowney status quo

February
27

Since The Jets Blog addressed the David Clowney situation last night, I’ll add what I know here. He still hasn’t heard from the Jets. But as an exclusive rights free agent, the third year wide receiver (AP photo) is not going anywhere.

The Jets do not have to address his situation until they decide whether or not to go for a wide out in free agency or through the draft. With Laveranues Coles hitting the market as a free agent last night at midnight and a wallet full of cap space, the team is waiting to see how the next few weeks change the roster before addressing a player already in pocket.

One thing is certain, Clowney is ready to get in the game more this season. He stretches the field for the Jets and, when he was put in the game in the preseason and he was active for one game late in the season, made some impressive catches.

Posted at 7:31, by the way, still an hour off and I’m going to have our IT dept. fix that today.

UPDATE 7:43: By multiple reports, free agent Ravens LB Bart Scott is coming to visit the Jets facility, where he has said he wants to play, and the speculation is that he will have a contract with the Jets to play under his former defensive coordinator and new Jets head coach Rex Ryan before he leaves.

If that’s the case, Eric Barton will almost certainly be in another uniform next season. Barton’s agent spoke with the Jets this week, but after midnight last night Barton confirmed to me that he is a free agent.

Posted by Jane McManus on Friday, February 27th, 2009 at 8:31 am |
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Tony Richardson signs, Barton free agent

February
27

12:08: Fullback Tony Richardson will be back in green this year, agreeing to a one-year deal with the Jets just before the stroke of midnight would have made him a free agent, said a source close to negotiations.

Update 1:10 a.m.: (Not sure why my time stamp is an hour off, but The Jets Blog linked to me just after midnight, so it was up). To add to the Jets free agency situation, LB Eric Barton and his agent talked this week but no deal was done and Barton is now technically a free agent.

Posted by Jane McManus on Friday, February 27th, 2009 at 1:08 am |
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Moore released

February
26

Everyone who called me crazy when I first reported this could happen on Feb. 9 can send me a brief email apology and we’ll call it even.

RG Brandon Moore was released this afternoon. There are numerous reasons why this could backfire—the importance of keeping the integrity of the offensive line, the cap space that was cleared surely gives the Jets room to resign him—but the team announced his release in the same sentence with two guys signed to futures contacts in the last six weeks.

So add to the Jets needs right now a competent right guard. And those don’t usually come cheap.

Here’s Moore’s offical bio.

Moore (RG, 6-3, 295, Illinois) originally signed as an undrafted free agent defensive lineman in 2002 and was converted to an offensive lineman during training camp. He made his regular season debut for the Jets in late 2003 at left guard. The Gary, IN native started 73 consecutive regular season games at right guard since missing three games in the middle of the 2004 season due to injury.

(RB Noah Herron and waived DE Sean Conover were the two others, for those of you scoring at home.)

Posted by Jane McManus on Thursday, February 26th, 2009 at 7:03 pm |
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Coles will be a free agent

February
25

Laveranues Coles will be a free agent this time tomorrow night. The Jets will save the $6 million hit on the salary cap this season, and Coles, 31, will try to better his compensation on the free market. There is still a chance that the wide receiver could be with the Jets this season if he doesn’t like the options in free agency and wants to renegotiate with the Jets.

“I have had the pleasure of getting to know Laveranues since he entered the league in 2000,” Jets GM Mike Tannenbaum said. “He is a fierce competitor, a great teammate and a good friend who has always given his best to the New York Jets. I spoke with him today and expressed my appreciation for his contributions both on and off the field. This move will allow Laveranues to explore his options, and we both agreed to keep the lines of communication open.”

From the Jets PR department come these stats:

631 career receptions (tied for 41st all time in NFL history with Raymond Berry) for 8,095 yards (70th all-time) and 44 touchdowns. In 2008, Coles finished with 70 receptions for 850 yards and seven touchdowns.

Those are the facts. It probably explains why Tannenbaum hasn’t been rushing to get WR David Clowney cozy (even though Clowney won’t have the option to test the market unless he is released.) Coles didn’t exactly seem happy with the Jets this year. When long-time friend Chad Pennington went to Miami, Coles refused to speak publically for a month. His chemistry with Brett Favre never seemed to fully develop. Perhaps this is a good move for both, particularly if they can keep it amicable.

Posted by Jane McManus on Wednesday, February 25th, 2009 at 11:51 pm |
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At heart, this is a people business…

February
25

Rex Ryan has been winning over the Jets he has spoken to, but Eric Mangini apparently isn’t having that effect on the Browns.

The NFL.com is reporting that Pro Bowl DT Shaun Rogers has asked his team not to pay the $6 million option he is owned, which would make him a free agent. The update on 1050 ESPN Radio said Rogers was unhappy that his new coach did not smile at him when they passed.

In real life, Mangini (AP photo) is a personable guy, but when he puts on his Coach Suit he can be prickly to the point of rudeness, and several Jets said that it was tough dealing with someone who was is inaccessible as a person.

Ryan is the total opposite. In fact, team owner Woody Johnson joked when they introduced him that it was like getting out of a relationship when you ask out someone who was nothing like your ex.

Posted by Jane McManus on Wednesday, February 25th, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
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A team of Journal News reporters share their thoughts on the Jets with the Lower Hudson fans.

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About the author
Jane McManusJane McManus joined The Journal News in 1999, after working at The Daily News and Newsday. Since she's been here, she's covered everything from girls basketball to the Final Four, the U.S. Open of both golf and tennis and recreational sports from rock climbing to roller derby (which she liked so much she joined the team). READ MORE
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