CB market could make Darrelle Revis' next contract less lucrative

Darrelle Revis looks on from the sidelines late

Darrelle Revis looks on from the sidelines late in the game against the Giants at MetLife Stadium. (Credit: Jim McIsaac, 2011)

While the Jets stand pat on a possible Darrelle Revis trade, NFL cornerbacks are flying off the market.

The Chiefs, Saints and Eagles bolstered their secondaries Thursday by signing Sean Smith, Keenan Lewis and Cary Williams, respectively. Those moves came on the heels of cornerback Chris Houston (who happens to be represented by Revis' agents) signing with the Lions and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie inking a deal with the Broncos.

But unlike the past, when top-market cornerbacks fetched hefty per-year deals with big-money guarantees, the current free agents have inked contracts for a fraction of those dollar amounts. Denver signed Rodgers-Cromartie to a one-year, $5-million contract, the Chargers signed former Jaguars cornerback Derek Cox to a four-year deal worth $20 million and former Cardinals corner Greg Toler signed a three-year, $14.25-million deal with the Colts.

Then again, none of those cornerbacks comes close to Revis Island. Then again, Revis isn't 100 percent healthy.

And with the way the free-agent cornerback market is shaping up, it could be tougher for Revis' camp to ensure that he gets a big-money payday (say, $16 million a year) from a potential trade partner with the Jets.

Though the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have had internal discussions about Revis and are open to trading for him, according to a source, the Jets are being patient in their proceedings. The holdup could be related to their draft compensation, according to a Yahoo! Sports report, which said the Bucs would be more willing to surrender their first-round pick in 2014 than this year's 13th overall pick.

Because of past contracts, the Jets are in no position to spend lavishly on free-agent signings. Instead, they've spent much of the offseason releasing veterans in an effort to clear cap space. Monday's release of nose tackle Sione Po'uha was the latest example of their cost-cutting maneuvers.

With a roster in disarray and little cap room to make vast improvement, it makes sense that the Jets would take a patient and deliberate approach in any trade dealings. But Saturday they'll have to fork over Revis' $1-million roster bonus. On the flip side, if new general manager John Idzik chooses to trade Revis before then, the cornerback's cap number will increase from $9 million to $12 million in dead money.

While the Bucs continue to make their own free-agent moves -- signing coveted free-agent safety Dashon Goldson and receiver Kevin Ogletree -- they haven't closed the door on adding Revis at some point.

"Everything's a possibility," Bucs coach Greg Schiano said in a Wednesday interview on NFL Network, adding that any player who can improve his team is on his "radar."

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