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Feely heads to Arizona

New York Jets kicker Jay Feely (3) celebrates

New York Jets kicker Jay Feely (3) celebrates with New York Jets tackle Damien Woody (67) after Feely kicked a field goal against the Cincinnati Bengals. (January 9, 2010) Photo Credit: AP

Jay Feely is officially a goner.

The unrestricted free agent kicker has inked a two-year, $4.8 million deal with the Cardinals. That deal includes a $1 million salary for 2010, a $500,000 signing bonus, and $1.5 million in other incentives.

Feely was a favorite of Rex Ryan, but it was evident when the Jets signed Nick Folk that his days with the Jets were likely over despite both sides saying there was the possibility Feely could be back.

Feely, who pocketed $1.5 million in 2009, spent the last two seasons with the Jets and made 54 of 64 attempts and all 71 PATs. He wasn't as steady against the Colts in the AFC Championship game, however, missing 2 of 3 attempts.

"I am truly sad to leave the Jets organization," Feely tweeted this afternoon. "The relationship I had with the fans was awesome. Thanks for all the support."

"My Jets teammates and coaches will be truly missed. There are a lot of great guys on that team and that atmosphere is phenomenal."

Feely will replace Neil Rackers, who was the Cardinals' main kicker the past seven seasons. Rackers, who could be someone the Jets consider, connected on 16 of 17 attempts in 2009.

But Rackers struggled a bit in the playoffs, missing 2 of 3 attempts including a potential 34-yard game-winning field goal in Arizona's eventual 51-45 wild-card win over the Packers in January.

The Cardinals were interested in bringing back Rackers, but weren't able to agree on a deal, which Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt said left the team with no choice.

“When you get to free agency and we have no kickers on the roster, that’s an unsettling feeling for the organization,” Whisenhunt said today. “We attempted to sign Neil. We were forced to move on to the next guy when we couldn’t get anything done.”

“We are certainly grateful to Neil for all his accomplishments and for all the work he did in the community, I am sure he will be missed,” Whisenhunt added. “But we had to protect ourselves as a football team at an important position.”

Since the Jets fall under the rules associated with being a "Final Four" team, Feely's departure actually gives them the opportunity to sign an unrestricted free agent, which could've been the team's thinking the entire time. The contracts of the player the Jets sign and Feely's would have to match monetarily, though.

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