The New York Jets traded star cornerback Darrelle Revis to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. The Jets traded Revis, who is arguably their best defensive asset, for two picks in the NFL draft this upcoming Thursday. One of those picks being the No. 13 overall pick to complement the No. 9 pick they already have. With the concept of rebuilding the franchise the next step for the Jets organization, their fans is wondering what is next for the team.
Revis is headed to sunny Tampa Bay, Fla. with a monster paycheck in his back pocket. After completing a physical and the trade announcement, Revis signed a six-year, $96 million deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, according to reports by ESPN. This contract makes him the highest-paid defensive back in the history of the NFL. The money in Revis’ contract is not guaranteed, however, as the Pro Bowl corner is recovering from a season-ending injury after he tore his ACL early last season.
With the NFL draft approaching and training camps beginning in just a few months, the Jets will look like a completely new ball club. The Jets have lost key players of a once stingy defense including veterans like Bart Scott, Calvin Pace and now Revis.
Jets fans are up in arms at the moment, but the statistics do not lie; the defense that was their cornerstone in consecutive AFC Championship runs has steadily depleted. Since the 2009 season, they have progressively slipped down the charts of the top ranked defensive teams, falling from first to eighth over four seasons. They still had a top ten defense last year but it could not hold the team above water with one of the worst offenses in the NFL.
“I think they are already looking ahead to future seasons and trying to get young talent for years to come,” said Ramapo College sophomore Anthony Drago.
With two picks early in the draft, the Jets seem to be revamping their roster with hopeful talent. There has been much speculation into who they will pick with the ninth and 13 picks this year. Big defensive names such as Louisiana State University defensive end Barkevious Mingo and University of Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones have been thrown around.
Recent reports by ESPN analysts have also indicated that the Jets, who have five quarterbacks on their roster, are not overlooking the idea of drafting another quarterback for their offensively challenged team. New offensive coordinator, Marty Mornhinweg, has been reportedly talking and working out with Gino Smith, the big arm passer from West Virginia University.
Smith had admitted in an interview with ESPN that the Jets did in fact “show some level of interest” in taking his talents to the Big Apple. Even the hometown kid, Ryan Nassib of Syracuse University, has been noted as a possibility for the Mornhinweg offensive scheme.
Regardless of whom the Jets pick up this year, or if they trade both high picks, they will be a new team without Revis in their corner. In the NFL’s opening weekend, Revis will return to New York to face the new-look Jets on Sept. 8 for a chance at redemption for both sides.