Jets doing their homework on McFadden

For all the enormous off-decisions the Jets have made, none is any more franchise-altering than the one they are now contemplating with the sixth overall pick.

New York could be staring straight at the possibility of drafting Arkansas running back Darren McFadden, who some teams have as the top-rated player on their boards.

If nothing else, the Jets will have enough experience with McFadden. The Jets sent a contingent of officials to Arkansas last month to meet with the running back.

Less than a week later, more Jets officials returned to Arkansas to attend McFadden's pro day, then met with the running back again.

And if that weren't enough time together, the Jets flew McFadden into New York on Wednesday night and spent much of Thursday huddling with him. It was one final meeting with McFadden, one final opportunity for Jets coach Eric Mangini and general manager Mike Tannenbaum to study the player who could find his way to New York this season.

There now is every chance McFadden will be available to the Jets at No. 6. Should McFadden get past the Oakland Raiders at No. 4 -– and the hunch here is he will -– the Jets will be presented with the chance to draft the player that some teams have rated as the top prospect in this draft.

McFadden has undeniable abilities but he also has character questions.

New York needs a workhorse running back to lessen the pressure on whichever quarterback it starts, Chad Pennington or Kellen Clemens. It poured $65 million worth of contracts into its offensive line this offseason, signing Alan Faneca and Damien Woody. Now it could add a player to run behind them.

If McFadden is available -– which is the way Oakland Raiders coach Lane Kiffn prefers it to be -- then New York will become the favorite to draft him.

And the Jets will go from investing time in McFadden to investing millions in him.

The price of 1

Bill Parcells is through devising coaching game plans. But he has one for the Dolphins' No. 1 overall pick.

Parcells is attempting to sign Michigan offensive tackle Jake Long to a contract that is worth three percent less than the six-year, $62 million deal that last year's No. 1 overall pick, quarterback JaMarcus Russell, signed with the Oakland Raiders.

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