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Peace at last: Revis agrees to new Jets deal, ending holdout

NEW YORK -- Revis Island is open for business again - just in time for the New York Jets to start what they hope will be a Super Bowl run.

All-Pro cornerback Darrelle Revis and the Jets agreed in principle to a four-year contract Sunday night, a week before the team's season opener.

He wrote on his Twitter page Monday afternoon that he arrived in New Jersey after flying from his home in South Florida. Revis was not at practice, but was expected to be in uniform Tuesday after signing the deal later Monday.

"It not has only been hard on u guys, but it has for me too," Revis wrote on his Twitter page early Monday morning. "I just want to tell yall that I'm sorry for this process and I can't wait to get back on the field." 

The Jets wouldn't disclose financial terms of the deal, but the Daily News reported it was worth $46 million, including $32 million guaranteed.

"Barring something unforeseen, we expect Darrelle to be here (Monday)," Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum said during a late-night conference call with reporters.

Revis, nicknamed "Revis Island" for his ability to routinely shut down opposing receivers, planned to fly from his home in South Florida to New Jersey on Monday, and he is expected to finalize the deal and end a 36-day holdout.

"This is an intermediate step to what we hope is an entire career of Darrelle as a Jet," Tannenbaum said, "for him to retire a Jet, for him to hopefully go to the Hall of Fame one day as a Jet and for him to be in our ring of honor."

Revis, who didn't make any public statements about the sometimes-acrimonious negotiations since minicamp in June, used his Twitter account to thank his family and his agents, Neil Schwartz and Jonathan Feinsod.

"To my family, neil, & john I love u guys I'm comin home baby!!!" Revis wrote. "Revis Island LET'S GO."

Jets owner Woody Johnson and coach Rex Ryan flew to South Florida on Saturday and met with Revis; his mother, Diana Gilbert; and his uncle, former NFL player Sean Gilbert, over the weekend to try to get a deal done.

"I think that was an important step in the process, but there was still obviously more work to be done," Tannenbaum said. "We spent all day looking at it and probably about (11 p.m. Sunday), we made a very significant breakthrough to finding a landing spot that was good for both sides."

Ryan was scheduled to have a conference call with reporters Saturday night to discuss the Jets' roster cutdown, but Tannenbaum handled it instead. A team spokesman said Ryan wasn't available because he was at an "appointment."

That turned out to be a visit with the man whom Ryan has repeatedly called the best cornerback in the NFL.

The new contract means Revis likely will be back on the field in time for the opener next Monday night against the Baltimore Ravens at the New Meadowlands Stadium.

"That'll be Rex's call," Tannenbaum said.

The GM said he "had no idea" what corresponding roster move the Jets would make once Revis was signed, sealed and delivered.

"I'm sure Rex will be able to figure out what to do to get Darrelle on the team," Tannenbaum quipped.

Revis' holdout began Aug. 1, when the Jets reported for training camp in Cortland. Tannenbaum said the nearly $600,000 in fines that Revis accrued for sitting out would be handled internally by the team.

Revis was scheduled to make $1 million in the fourth year of his six-year rookie deal, but he said he wanted to become the league's highest-paid cornerback. While he didn't get that this time around, Revis is receiving the guaranteed money that he sought during negotiations over the last several months.

With NFL Films cameras following the Jets all summer for HBO's "Hard Knocks" series, Revis' holdout was a major story line, even though he hadn't appeared in an episode.

Revis certainly will be a major focus in Wednesday night's series finale, especially since Tannenbaum acknowledged he wasn't sure the deal would ever be done and said the Jets looked into trades for other cornerbacks over the weekend.

"This was one of those things where I really wasn't optimistic," Tannenbaum said. "I really wasn't. I'm an optimist by nature, but this was really hard. There was a lot of heavy lifting, a lot of work put into it."

Since early August, the Jets and Revis' agents agreed to keep all negotiations confidential after things turned testy through the media.

There were some accusations made by both sides, with Johnson saying he was "rebuffed" by Revis' agents when he asked if he could be part of a meeting at the Roscoe Diner in Roscoe, N.Y.. Schwartz responded by saying that was "a blatant lie" and that Johnson was given "incorrect" information. Schwartz also said he'd meet Johnson "any time, any place."

Ryan even got into it, suggesting he give the team a day off from practice so the entire organization could sit down with Revis, his agents and anyone else the star player wanted in an effort to complete a deal.

Then came a code of silence from both sides -- and the fear that Revis could sit out the entire season, as his uncle once did. In the end, though, Revis will be back with the team in time to begin a season that Ryan and the Jets are convinced will be special.

"I'm happy, I'm relieved," Tannenbaum said. "Obviously, Darrelle's a great player. He's our guy and he's an important piece to what we're trying to accomplish here. ... I don't think anyone wanted it to take as long as it did, but it did. Now we can put it behind us and move on to Baltimore."

Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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