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Adalius Thomas: I'd play for Rex

New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez passes over

New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez passes over New England Patriots linebacker Adalius Thomas during the first quarter. (Nov. 22, 2009) Photo Credit: AP

While it seems likely the Jets would hold off on signing linebacker Adalius Thomas to a roster spot until after the first regular season game, it is at least apparent that Thomas will strongly consider playing for the Jets if asked.

Rex Ryan suggested over the weekend that he's open to signing Thomas, who used to play for him in Baltimore before going to the Patriots, but there was some uncertainty about whether Thomas wanted to continue playing.

He told SI.com's Peter King, however, that he'd play. King had suggested over the weekend that Thomas wasn't willing to return the Jets' calls.

"That is ridiculous,'' he said. "If they called me, I'd definitely call them back. All I know is [GM] Mike Tannenbaum called my agent [Bus Cook] a couple of days ago and they're interested in maybe doing something with me — but not until after the first game of the season.''

Why not sign him now, especially with Calvin Pace out several weeks with a broken left foot? Simple. If the Jets signed him before the first regular season game, his salary would be guaranteed for the entire season. If they wait until after the opener against the Ravens, the Jets have the flexibility to release Thomas if they feel he isn't contributing, or if he becomes unnecessary once Pace returns.

Thomas told King he spoke with Ryan over the weekend and was told nothing was imminent. Thomas seemed puzzled that there was so little interest in him after his release from New England.

"I don't know if teams are scared off about me now or if I've been blackballed," he said. "I do think there are teams out there that I'd be a good fit for — the Jets especially."

New York Sports