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Jets cut Bryan Thomas, team's longest-tenured player

New York Jets linebacker Garrett McIntyre played like a man with something to prove last Sunday.

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For McIntyre, the two-sack, six-tackle performance against the Pittsburgh Steelers showed he deserved a role in Rex Ryan's defense. For Bryan Thomas, it again reminded us how tenuous job security can be in the NFL.

In a surprising move, the Jets released Thomas on Saturday, cutting ties with their longest-tenured player. In a corresponding move, the team added cornerback Donnie Fletcher from the practice squad.

A first-round draft pick in 2002, Thomas has played in 146 games for the Jets, totaling 439 tackles and 31 sacks. He played in 11 postseason games with the Jets, the second-highest total in franchise history. Thomas missed the loss to the Steelers with a hamstring injury. He was doubtful to play Sunday against the Miami Dolphins.

Because of his status as a fully vested veteran who was on the Week 1 roster, Thomas' $920,000 base salary is guaranteed. He's now a free agent who can sign with any team. It's widely been speculated the Jets could bring back Thomas as early as Monday.

Of course, Bill Belichick obviously is sitting in his office right now, staring at the ceiling as he strokes his chin.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @danhanzus.

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