New Jets GM John Idzik doesn't defuse Darrelle Revis trade rumors
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Welcome to New York, John Idzik.
Hours after setting foot inside the Jets' facility for the first time, the general manager managed to upset the team's best player, Darrelle Revis.
Rather than temper the rumors regarding the Jets' reported interest in trading the star cornerback, Idzik's noncommittal stance on Revis' future only helped to fuel the speculation -- and stun Revis.
"Speechless !!!," Revis tweeted at 1:58 p.m. yesterday before deleting the message. A few minutes later, Revis, who is rehabbing his surgically repaired left knee, addressed his fans again via Twitter. "I'm speechless by far," he wrote. "But more importantly I feel more upset for the jet nation for having to go through this!!!
"I guess we'll see how this plays out."
Rumors involving Revis ran rampant Wednesday night, courtesy of a CBS Sports report that said owner Woody Johnson is "very interested" in trading the three-time All-Pro, considered by many to be the league's top cornerback. Revis can become an unrestricted free agent after the 2013 season, and his contract contains a clause that prohibits the Jets from designating him as their franchise player.
Asked about the report in a separate meeting with writers, Johnson said: "I don't know where that came from." But he didn't deny its veracity. Instead, Johnson deferred to the GM.
But Idzik, who spent the previous three days with coach Rex Ryan in Mobile, Ala., for the Senior Bowl workouts, said he was in no position to speculate on roster moves.
"I'm literally hours into the building," Idzik said, adding it's "premature to say anything specific" about any player.
Johnson did say, however, that Revis' recovery from an ACL tear suffered Sept. 23 won't have a negative impact on his trade value. "I saw Darrelle the other day," Johnson said. " . . . I think he's going to come back 100 percent. I don't think there's any question."
This is just the latest installment in the ongoing saga between Revis and the Jets. Revis, 27, was caught in a 21-day contract impasse as a rookie in 2007. He also staged a 36-day holdout in 2010 before signing a four-year, $46-million deal that expires after this season.
It paid him $32.5 million in the first two years and $13.5 million in the final two. General manager Mike Tannenbaum said at the time that the contract was "an intermediate step to what we hope is an entire career of Darrelle as a Jet, 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."
But now Idzik will have the final say on Revis' future with the Jets. When asked later about Revis on ESPN Radio, Idzik said: "Darrelle is a very talented player. He's a New York Jet. We love having him as a New York Jet."
During his introductory news conference, Idzik stressed that decision-making will be a collaboration, using the phrase "the power of we" several times. "Family, cohesion, teamwork are at my core," he said. "They're at the core of the New York Jets."
Idzik, 52, is the son of former Jets assistant coach John Idzik, who was on the staff of the Baltimore Colts when they won Super Bowl V. Idzik refuted the assumption that he's just a salary-cap guy, saying: "Football is at the root of who I am."
Although the Jets appear to be a franchise in flux, Idzik said their bloated salary cap was not "a hindrance" in his decision to take the job. "Every step of the way," he said, "I gravitated more toward the New York Jets."
Idzik cautioned against the "misperceptions" surrounding the Jets -- the biggest being their circus persona. "I don't see dysfunction," he said.