New York Jets  

 

New York Jets believe GM John Idzik can clean up their messes

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Welcome to the New York Jets, John Idzik. Are you going to trade Darrelle Revis?

The answer: Who knows?

The conclusion: Once the Jets -- led by Idzik, their new general manager -- have the chance to evaluate the roster, including their All-Pro cornerback, they'll get back to us. Rex Ryan suggested that Idzik will have to "watch tape" before being able to adequately address Revis, or anybody else.

Ok, we'll play along. Maybe Google Maps can provide directions to Revis Island. Sheesh.

And so begins another chapter in the life of the Jets, who presumably have hired Idzik to straighten out their messes, including a busting-at-the-seams salary cap figure, a depleted roster, the turnover-prone quarterback and a league-wide perception that they are a laughingstock.

Even if Idzik, who arrives at 1 Jets Drive after serving as vice president of football operations for the Seattle Seahawks, doesn't exactly see it that way.

At his introductory press conference Thursday morning, Idzik was as advertised. He is respected in league circles. At the Senior Bowl this week, fellow executives described him thusly: Smart, serious, studied, guarded. And a heck of a nice guy.

He makes eye contact, firmly shakes hands. He thanked his family -- his wife, Carol, and their three children -- and he wished his parents a Happy 60th Anniversary. He came across as the college professor who dropped by the Jets' frat party and decided to stay; hey, someone has to clean up the place.


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In terms of vision, Idzik offered few specifics, talked about "the power of we," and emphasized his belief in actions speaking louder than words. The last part, especially, would represent a significant change for the chatty Jets, but the 52-year-old Idzik -- a Dartmouth man -- appeared unfazed.

"Misperceptions," Idzik said, unemotionally explaining away the chaos that has so often surrounded, and swallowed, his new operation.

"I don't deal with much in perception to be honest. I deal with reality," Idzik said. "The reality here is, I think this is one of the most fabulous football infrastructures anyone can ask for."

Idzik might be the right man for the job. He promised to value draft picks. He vowed to uncover talent. He emphasized his commitment to a "collaborative effort" in decision making; that left us -- and Jets fans -- a bit queasy, but we have to assume he understands how much these Jets need a strong, definitive leader.

About personnel, Idzik mostly declined to comment, saying, "I'm literally hours into the building." He does know a little about Mark Sanchez from being in Seattle with Pete Carroll, who coached Sanchez at USC. And surely he remembers the Sanchez interception by Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, one in a long list of Sanchez turnovers that doomed the 2012 Jets.

"(Sanchez is) an athletic guy; he was accomplished at USC," Idzik said. "He's done some nice things here, but I think we just need to take our time and evaluate Mark with everybody else on the roster and see how we can move forward and improve."

For his part, Ryan now says he believes Sanchez needs "to erase his hard drive," which might be a newfangled way of suggesting that since the Jets are stuck with their $8.25 million QB, they will continue to cross their fingers and hope he stops giving the ball to the other team.

Sanchez does get new coaches in 2013: offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg and quarterbacks coach David Lee. "He has to be popping out of his skin," Ryan said. "I think as any quarterback would."

So, there's that. And there was this: Amid reports that owner Woody Johnson will dangle Revis, the Jets' best player, as trade bait, there was clearly an organizational decree to offer a resounding no comment.

"I think it's way premature to say anything specific," Idzik said. "I think it would be presumptuous to say anything about that right now."

Said Johnson: "We've got to evaluate it and look at it both now and medium and longer term."

And Ryan, who used to talk about Revis as if he were his agent: "I'm not going to get into any of those specifics right now. Let's let the process run its course."

Line drawn. On Revis, who is coming off a torn ACL, is due $6 million in 2013 and can be a prickly sort when it comes to contracts. On Revis, who is a proud player who changes games. Every game.

On Dec. 31, Baggie Day, Revis stood at his locker and said: "I definitely want to be here. This is where I live. This is the team I got drafted by. I owe a lot to them as much as they do. I'm here. I don't want to go anywhere else. If anything, all the stuff that's been going on, I'm here to fight through it and help this team to be positive and win games. That's all I want to do."

On Thursday afternoon, a tweet from @Revis24 indicated that the cornerback was rendered "speechless."

At some point, Idzik might decide that it is in the best interest of the Jets to deal Revis, who will be a free agent after the 2013 season. He will be difficult to sign; the trade return could help Idzik rebuild the roster. But all of that is for another day.

The Jets, with their silly decision to no-comment the situation, needlessly inflamed the trade-bait question and provoked Revis. They were misguided, again, for no good reason.

Yes, the Jets need John Idzik. But he has to be the adult in the room. He has to be the one to say "no" to how things used to be. And "not anymore" to how they still are.

Follow Kim Jones on Twitter @KimJonesSports

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