Over the course of the offseason, I’ll be posting a series of articles analyzing statistics and data rather than game film. I’ll also be revisiting last year’s offseason articles to see whether the conclusions drawn were indicative of what was actually going to happen during the season and using that information to try and determine what 2011’s data tells us about what might happen in 2012. However, before the new league year gets underway, I’m going to address some issues on the salary cap, draft picks, contracts and free agency side of things. In a few days, I’ll try and set out a realistic projection for what cap room the Jets are likely to have available once the new league year gets underway, but today I’m looking at the draft choices the Jets will have in the upcoming draft.

After the jump, I’ll list out all the picks initially held by the Jets, together with details of outstanding trades and potential compensatory picks.

As ever, if you want to jump in with questions, corrections or speculation, feel free to do so. I am also open to ideas for things you’d like me to cover over the course of the offseason.

Introduction

Here, according to WalterFootball.com are the picks that the Jets should hold in the upcoming draft:

1st Round – 16

2nd Round – 15 (47th overall)

3rd Round – 14 (76th overall)

4th Round – 13 (109th overall*)

5th Round – 19 (147th overall*)

6th Round – 18 (178th overall*)

7th Round – 17 (209th overall*)

However, this does not take into account the outcome of any conditionally traded draft picks or UFA compensatory picks. Therefore, let’s see how they will affect the Jets’ haul.

* Note: The overall position of picks from the fourth round onwards does not take into account compensatory picks at the end of the 3rd-to-7th rounds.

Conditionally Traded Picks

The Jets made three trades during the offseason for conditional draft picks. Let’s look at each of these individually:

Derrick Mason:

Mason was traded to Houston five weeks into the season for a conditional seventh round pick. The conditions were that, in order for the Jets to receive the pick, Mason would need to catch 33 passes over the last 11 games of the season. He ultimately got nowhere near this mark. Outcome: No pick owed to the Jets.

Dwight Lowery:

Lowery was traded to Jacksonville before the season began for a conditional sixth round pick. If he failed to meet the conditions, this would revert to a seventh rounder. Unfortunately, the conditions have not, to my knowledge, been officially announced. Based on what the Jets usually do, it could be based on (a) playing time, (b) the Jags re-signing Lowery when his contract expires or (c) some team-based goal. If it’s (a) that’s good news for the Jets, because he started several games for them before getting hurt. The Jags struggled in 2011, so (c) would be bad news. If it’s (b) or a combination of (a) and (b) that will depend what happens. Even if Lowery goes back to the Jags, they can perhaps get around the conditions by letting him hit free agency and then signing him immediately, as the Saints did with Jonathan Vilma. Outcome: At least a seventh rounder, possibly a sixth owed to the Jets.

Caleb Schlauderaff:

Schlauderaff was traded to the Jets for a conditional seventh rounder, although once again the trade conditions have not, to my knowledge, been released. If the conditions are not met, no pick is owed. If this is based on playing time, it’s unlikely the condition was met, because Schlauderaff played just 14 snaps. He is under contract for three years, but I suppose the condition could be something like he still has to be on the roster on the first day of the 2012 league year. Outcome: Either the Jets don’t owe a pick, or they owe a seventh rounder.

Taking the three trades together, the best case scenario is that they get an extra sixth rounder and the worst case scenario is that they get nothing because two seventh rounders will cancel each other out.

UFA Compensatory Picks

Note: UFA Compensatory Picks are different from the compensatory picks awarded when a team signs a restricted free agent or a franchised player to an offer sheet that isn’t matched. This is highly unlikely to apply to the Jets.

UFA Compensatory Picks are awarded to teams who lost a lot of free agents in the offseason. This is based on a secret formula that teams aren’t given, but the process has been going on long enough that we’ve got a pretty decent idea of how to project (assuming the NFL has not elected to change the formula, which is theoretically possible). Courtesy of the excellent AdamJT13, we now have enough information to make an informed estimate of the extra picks potentially due to the Jets.

First, here are some of the main rules:

- Teams can receive a maximum of four compensatory picks

- The maximum value of a compensatory pick is a third rounder

- Compensatory picks are added at the end of each round

- Only qualifying UFA losses count towards the calculation of how many picks are owed

- Qualifying UFA gains are offset against UFA losses and picks are only awarded to the extent that losses exceed gains

- To qualify, you must be an unrestricted free agent whose contract expired (or, in some cases, was voided) at the end of the previous season. RFA’s, even RFA’s that became UFA’s as a result of not being tendered do not qualify and neither do players who were cut, waived or released.

- Players signed after the end of the free agent signing period (usually the last week in June, but the lockout pushed this to the end of August in 2011) and players released before week 10 by their new teams do not qualify.

- The draft round value of the players appears to be mainly based on the annual value of their new contract, but playing time and postseason honors factor into things as well. For example, a player failing to have the required amount of playing time could become non-qualifying or a player with postseason honors might get bumped up to a higher round if they are on the bubble.

So, which of the Jets’ free agency signings and losses were qualifying and where does it leave them when netted out?

In terms of free agent gains, the good news is that the Jets don’t seem to have any qualifying gains which would otherwise be offset against their losses. Most of their free agent dollars were spent on re-signing players they already owned, which has no effect on the compensatory pick calculation. Those that they did sign before the end of the free agent signing period did not qualify because they were cut by their previous team before their contract expired (Strickland, Mason) or were not with a team at the end of the previous season (Burress).

In terms of losses, there were plenty, but not all of them were picked up and retained by another team. Therefore the likes of Pryce, Richardson, Laury, Clemens and Gholston do not qualify. Some of their players that got picked up were cut or traded by the Jets rather than seeing their contract expire. Therefore, Cotchery, Taylor, Lowery and Hartsock do not qualify. A couple were RFA’s that they decided not to tender, so Steve Weatherford and James Ihedigbo do not qualify. That seems to leave four that potentially qualify, which is the maximum number anyway, as noted above. Let’s look at each of these in detail.

Before we do, though, let’s refer back to Adam’s post for the approximate 2008 annual salary thresholds he used to accurately determine the appropriate draft round for each qualifying player:

7th Rounders – $0.9m to $2.7m

6th Rounders - $2.7m to $4m

5th Rounders - $4m to $5m

4th Rounders - $5m to $6.5m

3rd Rounders – Over $6.5m

These numbers applied back in 2008, when the salary cap was $116m and Adam was suggesting that the increase in these thresholds from year to year was more or less in line with the salary cap. Since the 2011 cap was $120.375m, we can apply a 3.8% increase to these figures and hope to be accurate, but the cap in 2009 was $129M, so it’s possible that the numbers would have been increased by more than that and then may not have been adjusted back down again for the reduction in the cap last year.

However, it’s probably an accurate enough starting point, so our thresholds kick in at $0.93m, $2.8m, $4.2m, $5.2m and $6.7m. So, let’s see where the Jets UFA losses fell:

Shaun Ellis:

Ellis got a one year deal for $4m, so he seems to have fallen just short of being a 5th rounder. However, he did play in 14 games, starting 10, so maybe that would be enough to push that up to a 5th rounder. Given that he played less than a third of the total snaps, I’d say this seems unlikely, but there’s no reason I can see that he shouldn’t fetch a sixth rounder.

Brad Smith:

Smith got a $15m, four year deal, so his average annual salary comes in at $3.75m. That puts him in the sixth round range and it seems unlikely he’ll be bumped up a level because he only played 44 more snaps than Ellis and started five fewer games. This looks certain to be a sixth rounder.

Drew Coleman:

Coleman got a three year, $7.4m deal. That puts his average at just below $2.5m, putting him just short of sixth round status. Maybe it’s close enough for him to get bumped up a level due to his playing time – 16 appearances, four starts, 49.4% snap count – but that was the maximum value for the deal, so the base salary might be lower anyway. This looks like a seventh rounder.

Braylon Edwards:

Edwards is an interesting case, because it’s possible he might not qualify, for a couple of reasons. First of all, his base salary was widely reported as just $1m which is pretty close to our estimated threshold. Secondly, he was released before the season ended. Finally, he did not play much. However, his salary was reported in some places as $1.6m, which leads me to believe he probably had a roster bonus early in the year. Also, he was released before the end of the year, but after week 10, which Adam suggests hasn’t stopped players from qualifying in the past. Finally, although he didn’t play much, I was surprised to see that he did play 22% of the snaps for the 49ers this year and Adam cites examples of players who have qualified despite having playing time of less than 20% in the past. All this leads me to conclude he’ll fetch them a seventh rounder, although had he met his incentives, the return would be greater.

The actual compensatory picks are usually announced in the third week of March or thereabouts.

EDIT: Since compiling this article, I’ve found another site that did a projection here. The good news is that their take basically agrees with my best case scenario.

Conclusions

Overall, the Jets currently have one pick in each round and, based on my projections, they will have several additional late round picks. I would suggest that they will get three seventh rounders and two sixth rounders, although the best case scenario might see one of the seventh rounders improved to a sixth (based on Lowery meeting his conditions) and it’s not inconceivable that Ellis could be worth a fifth rounder rather than a sixth. The worst case scenario might see Edwards not qualifying, Lowery only earning them a seventh and Schlauderaff costing them a pick. Even this would still net them two sixths and a seventh in addition to the picks they already have in each round.

These picks could come in useful, like when the Jets drafted Slauson in 2009 or could be packaged to move up in an earlier round and target someone specific. Maybe they could even trade one for a veteran player, although I doubt they would want to add a player with a high salary in this manner. No matter how accurate the projections, it figures to be a busy offseason.

We will of course update you once more concrete information is known.

Tags: BGA, Bent Double

Jets defensive tackle Steve McLendon (99) sacks Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton (14) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium.  (Brad Penner (USA Today))
Jets defensive tackle Steve McLendon (99) sacks Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton (14) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner (USA Today))

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: The Jets exercised their options on two defensive starters on Tuesday, ensuring that defensive tackle Steve McLendon and linebacker Josh Martin will both be back for the 2018 season.

The Jets were facing a deadline of Tuesday on both players, but the decision likely wasn't difficult, especially with the team likely to have nearly $100 million in salary cap space to spend this offseason. McLendon is due a salary of $3.125 million this year and has a salary cap number of $4.25 million. Martin is due a salary of $1.8 million, with a cap number of $2.1 million.

The moves come one day after the Jets declined their 2018 option on tackle Ben Ijalana, making him an unrestricted free agent...

Tags: Steve McLendon, Ralph Vacchiano
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GEICO SportsNite: Cousins 00:02:18
The Jets hope to be in the mix to land highly touted free-agent quarterback Kirk Cousins in order to provide stability at the QB position.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The entire Jets offseason will be played out in the shadow of Kirk Cousins -- the biggest name on the free-agent market, and the franchise quarterback they so desperately need. And that's even true right now, as the NFL's 15-day "franchise tag" window opens on Tuesday.

The Jets aren't likely to use the tag, but the Washington Redskins are reportedly considering using it on Cousins.

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Demario Davis, Morris Claiborne, Wesley Johnson, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Kelvin Kuo)
(Kelvin Kuo)

It is no secret the Jets wants top free-agent QB Kirk Cousins on their roster next season, and it came out Monday that they are "willing to pay whatever it takes." But what if Cousins decides to sing elsewhere? What is the Jets' next move from there?

According to SI's Peter King, the Jets should be high on bringing back Josh McCown, and drafting Heisman Trophy Award winner Baker Mayfield ahead of next season. Though the jets are expected to have a pretty healthy cap situation, McCown could come back for cheap, and Mayfield will obviously be on a rookie contract. 

King doesn't deny that Cousins could certainly be a Jet, but this situation could also work with McCown mentoring Mayfield as he did Johnny Manziel back in 2014. 

Tags: Josh McCown
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New York Jets tackle Ben Ijalana blocks during the second half of the preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Jets tackle Ben Ijalana blocks during the second half of the preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA Today Sports Images)

The Jets made offensive tackle Ben Ijalana a free agent on Monday after they failed to exercise his player option.

New York did not exercise Ijalana's $500,000 option bonus that would have activated his $4.5 million base salary for the 2018 season. By doing so, the Jets will save a total of $4.6 million.

Tags: Ben Ijalana
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Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

The Jets know they need a quarterback, and in particular, free-agent QB Kirk Cousins. That is why the team is "willing to pay whatever it takes" to employ him next season, per ESPN's Rich Cimini

New York has failed to find their franchise quarterback for years now, as fill-ins, so to speak, continue to come to town with Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg failing to show they are the guy the Jets need. Josh McCowwas the latest of those rentals, and he had a career year before an injury unfortunately ended his season. 

This offseason, though, GM Mike Maccagnan has no excuse in Cimini's eyes. He currently has over $70 million in cap space, and could have more than that by the time they can grab Cousins. The Redskins can still franchise tag him, so they could use him in a trade, but that is unlikely. 

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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In 2017, the Jets' running game struggles probably had more to do with the offensive line being overmatched than the performance of the backs.

Tags: Bilal Powell, Elijah McGuire, Matt Forte
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Cincinnati Bengals quarterback AJ McCarron throws against the Chicago Bears during the second half at Paul Brown Stadium. (David Kohl/USA TODAY Sports)
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback AJ McCarron throws against the Chicago Bears during the second half at Paul Brown Stadium. (David Kohl/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets reportedly turned down a Cincinnati Bengals trade proposal that would have sent quarterback AJ McCarron to New York last season, according to ESPN's Rich Cimini.

Cincinnati, according to Cimini, called the Jets organization at the start of free agency and offered McCarron in a trade, however the Jets turned it down to focus on free agency. It is unclear what Cincinnati requested in the deal.

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 (Vincent Carchietta)
(Vincent Carchietta)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: The Jets started over last offseason and actually built themselves a nice core of talent. They have many young, inexpensive players they can build around this spring.

They certainly have the tools to build around them - perhaps as much as $100 million in cap room, the sixth overall pick in the draft, and some extra picks too. And that's good, because even though the Jets exceeded expectations last season, they were still 5-11, and have plenty of holes to fill.

Now, as they get ready to begin Phase 2 of their rebuilding project, here's a look at their biggest needs.

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Brian Winters, James Carpenter, Juston Burris, Leonard Williams, Morris Claiborne, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Sheldon Richardson, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Trevor Ruszkowski)
(Trevor Ruszkowski)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter: Cornerback is one position where the Jets obviously need to upgrade.

They opted not to pick up a corner from last year's deep draft class until they took two project players - Jeremy Clark and Derrick Jones - in the sixth round. The coaching staff claimed to like the upside of these players along with Juston Burris and Darryl Roberts as well as Rashard Robinson, who was added via trade at the deadline.

However, none of these players stepped up as hoped.

Tags: Derrick Jones, Jeremy Clark, Juston Burris, Morris Claiborne
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 (Kirby Lee)
(Kirby Lee)

"Broadway Baker" has a nice ring to top prospect QB Baker Mayfield

The 2017 Heisman Trophy Award winner sat down with The Post's Steve Serby to talk about the prospect of playing in the Big Apple, and if he has what it takes to succeed in a market that isn't friendly to anyone. 

Simply put: Mayfield loves the spotlight...

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New York Jets quarterback coach Jeremy Bates during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback coach Jeremy Bates during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets have officially announced the hiring of Jeremy Bates as offensive coordinator/QB Coach, and announced the hirings of Rick Dennison as offensive line coac/run game coordinator and Steve Jackson as assistant defensive backs coach.

"Jeremy is a talented coach who has a sound understanding of what it takes to build a successful offense," head coach Todd Bowles said in a press release. "Having spent last season with us, he offers continuity and has a good sense of what we need to do to improve. I look forward to him working together with our offensive coaches."

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: When Todd Bowles decided to fire offensive coordinator John Morton, he always had quarterbacks coach Jeremy Bates in mind as a replacement...

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 (Jeremy Brevard)
(Jeremy Brevard)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The Jets have been a team whose defense has been built around their interior linemen for a long time, but Muhammad Wilkerson's anticipated departure could be an opportunity to reinvent themselves by finding a difference-maker who can create constant pressure off the edge.

The Jets haven't really had an elite edge rusher since John Abraham, who was traded before the 2006 draft. They've tried drafting one high (Vernon Gholston), converting an interior lineman into one (Quinton Coples), and bringing in an established veteran (Jason Taylor). But none of these have been successful. None of their low-cost free agents, reclamation projects, or later draft picks have stepped up either.

Tags: Dylan Donahue, Jordan Jenkins, Lorenzo Mauldin
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Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan on the sidelines before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan on the sidelines before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Jets are in position to be the kings of free agency, with potentially more salary cap room to spend than any team except for the Cleveland Browns. They are already projected to have about $75 million in salary cap space, and that's if they don't make another move.

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New York Jets cornerback Morris Claiborne breaks up a touchdown attempt to Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry in the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets cornerback Morris Claiborne breaks up a touchdown attempt to Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry in the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

When the free agency frenzy finally begins, the Jets figure to be at the center of the storm. And all eyes will be on how hard they go after the quarterback they so desperately need.

But they have a ton of salary cap space to spend in other areas, including maybe on the 24 players they have on their roster who are approaching free agency. Here's a look at all their free agents-to-be, and their prospects of returning or finding potential riches somewhere else around the league:

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Brent Qvale, Chandler Catanzaro, Dakota Dozier, Demario Davis, Josh McCown, Morris Claiborne, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quincy Enunwa, Rontez Miles, Wesley Johnson, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Mark J. Rebilas)
(Mark J. Rebilas)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

There are always plenty of receiver prospects who make an immediate impact as a rookie, even in the later rounds. However, the Jets haven't had much success in recent years despite selecting seven wideouts in the last four drafts.

While four of those seven are under contract for 2018 and a fifth -- restricted free agent Quincy Enunwa -- also figures to be back, the Jets got just 15 catches of production from that group in 2017.

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Daily News Live: Jimmy Garoppolo 00:03:54
The Daily News Live crew discusses the impact Jimmy Garoppolo's new contract will have on the deal Kirk Cousins will want.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Jimmy Garoppolo just became the NFL's highest paid player, even though he's only started seven NFL games and thrown 12 touchdown passes in four seasons. He reportedly agreed to a monster, five-year, $137.5 million deal with the San Francisco 49ers -- a record average of $27.5 million per season. That record will be very short-lived.

It's a simple fact of the NFL that the price of franchise quarterbacks only goes up, and in less than five weeks another one will be on the open market. And when Kirk Cousins officially becomes free on March 14 you can bet his deal will eclipse what Garoppolo just got...

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 (Glenn Andrews)
(Glenn Andrews)

In NFL.com's latest mock draft, Chad Reuter forecasted the first three rounds for all teams. With the Jets first selection at no. 6 overall, Reuter has them taking Wyoming QB Josh Allen.

The Jets take Allen over Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield, who fell to the Cardinals at no. 15. USC QB Sam Darnold went no. 1 to the Browns and UCLA QB Josh Rosen went no. 2 to the Giants.

Allen threw for 3,202 yards with 28 touchdowns and 15 interceptions in his sophomore season. However, his production dropped this season to 1,812 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also suffered a shoulder injury, and was forced to miss the final two regular-season games this year...

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 (Chuck Cook)
(Chuck Cook)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Most of the draft discussions surrounding quarterback prospects have been focused on the consensus top five prospects: UCLA's Josh Rosen, USC's Sam Darnold, Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield, Wyoming's Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson from Louisville.

However, depending how the offseason goes, the Jets might end up in a situation where they're not in the market for one of the top prospects.

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Nov 26, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Darrelle Revis (24) (Jay Biggerstaff)
Nov 26, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Darrelle Revis (24) (Jay Biggerstaff)

The Chiefs have released former Jet Darrelle Revis, the team announced. 

Revis, 32, would have been owed a $10 million contract guarantee if he was still on the roster on March 18. He was signed by Chiefs in November, playing five games, including two starts. 

After the Chiefs' season ended, Revis admitted he wasn't at his best.

Tags: Darrelle Revis
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New York Jets defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers responds to questions from media during OTA at Atlantic Health Training Center. (Noah K. Murray)
New York Jets defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers responds to questions from media during OTA at Atlantic Health Training Center. (Noah K. Murray)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: Kacy Rodgers never got a chance to play in the NFL before he turned to coaching. But now he might be able to give his son the shot that he never had.

The Jets will be signing Kacy Rodgers II, the son of their current defensive coordinator, according to his agent, David Canter. Rodgers II will join the Jets for their offseason program, at least, after two years with the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League.

Rodgers II is a 6-2, 208-pound defensive back out of the University of Miami. In 2014 he was a tryout player at the Kansas City Chiefs rookie minicamp, but didn't stick. He then signed with the CFL's Edmonton Eskimos and spent a year on their practice squad before joining the Roughriders...

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Former Jets C Nick Mangold was thinking about starting his political career, and running in his local GOP primary, according to Politico's Matt Friedman.

However, Mangold said Thursday that he will not be running.

Mangold would've been running to replace the retiring Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, who represents the 11th District of New Jersey. Essex County Republican Chairman Al Barlas has spoken with Mangold, and he appears to be serious about running for the position.

Tags: Nick Mangold
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Jan 14, 2018; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell (26) rushes the ball against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the fourth quarter in the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Heinz Field. Jacksonville won 45-42. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
Jan 14, 2018; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell (26) rushes the ball against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the fourth quarter in the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Heinz Field. Jacksonville won 45-42. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

After saying he wouldn't join the Jets for $60 million, Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell, a pending free agent, told TMZ exactly what it would take to secure his services.

"A hundred Ms," Bell said, referring to $100 million. "Hey, listen to me: I play running back, but they've got to respect me like I am, man." 

Bell, 25, responded to a fan's tweet last week asking what amount of money it would take for him to join the Jets.

 

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Another year has come and gone without the Jets winning the Super Bowl. Even the Philadelphia Eagles now have ended their forever Super Bowl drought. If you're counting, that's 49 straight Super Bowls that have been played without the Jets.

Can the 50th time be their charm?

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Bilal Powell, Elijah McGuire, Leonard Williams, Matt Forte, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Sheldon Richardson, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Kirby Lee)
(Kirby Lee)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Two years ago, the Jets drafted Darron Lee with their first pick, hoping to shore up one of their inside linebacker positions for the foreseeable future. Over the course of his first two seasons, he's been up and down, but he has retained an every-down role.

Last year, he struggled initially, then played the best football of his career in the middle of the season, only to regress down the stretch. However, there are no indications that the Jets intend to move on from Lee.

Tags: Darron Lee, Demario Davis, Jamal Adams
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Jan 27, 2018; Mobile, AL, USA; North Squad quarterback Josh Allen of Wyoming (17) throw a pass during the second quarter of the 2018 Senior Bowl against the South Squad at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports (Glenn Andrews)
Jan 27, 2018; Mobile, AL, USA; North Squad quarterback Josh Allen of Wyoming (17) throw a pass during the second quarter of the 2018 Senior Bowl against the South Squad at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports (Glenn Andrews)

In his latest mock draft, Todd McShay changed his pick for the Jets, and has them taking Wyoming QB Josh Allen with the sixth overall pick. 

McShay originally had New York taking LSU DE Arden Key. However, he had a change of heart as the Jets desperately need to find their franchise quarterback. But he warns not to forget about free agency, where GM Mike Maccagnan will have about $100 million to go after high-profile QB Kirk Cousins.

"Yes, it's a running theme -- this is another landing spot for Cousins," McShay writes. "If the Jets don't sign him in free agency, Allen makes a lot of sense if Mayfield is off the board. There is a significant drop-off in talent after the first four QBs in this draft, so the Jets need to make sure they grab one here. Allen had an impressive performance at the Senior Bowl, showing off his arm and his mobility. There are still concerns about his accuracy and ability to make multidimensional throws consistently, but all the tools are there. And he has the prototypical QB build (6-foot-4 7/8, 237 pounds)."

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 (Matthew Emmons)
(Matthew Emmons)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Philadelphia Eagles would be absolutely crazy to get rid of Nick Foles now after he slayed the mighty Patriots, and was rightfully named the Super Bowl MVP. Yes, they have Carson Wentz, a legitimate MVP candidate, before he got hurt. And yes, Foles will likely be Wentz's backup again next season.

But didn't Foles just prove to everyone how valuable a backup quarterback on a contender really is?

Tags: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

In last year's draft, the Jets used their first two picks on safeties, and Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye started every game alongside one another in the secondary. Those starting roles seem settled for the next few years, but the Jets like to operate out of packages with three and even four safeties, so Todd Bowles may be keen to add some depth.

Last year, Rontez Miles and Terrance Brooks each saw regular playing time, often playing together as the Jets used a four-safety dime package in passing situations. Also, Doug Middleton, who missed the season due to injury, was expected to contribute. All three are now out of contract though, so the Jets may look to fortify their depth in the draft.

While it seems unlikely the Jets would select another safety with their top pick, Alabama's Minkah Fitzpatrick is a possible consideration due to his versatility. Could Fitzpatrick be like Jalen Ramsey -- a hybrid cornerback/safety who has developed into one of the league's better cornerbacks?

Tags: Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye, Rontez Miles
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GEICO SportsNite: Super Bowl 00:06:46
Nick Foles and the Eagles upset Tom Brady and the Patriots for the first Super Bowl win in Philadelphia's franchise history.

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) As their delirious fans sang their theme song and their owner lifted the Lombardi Trophy, the Philadelphia Eagles finally could breathe freely.

Tags: New England Patriots, Philadelphia Eagles
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Loud Mouths on the Super Bowl 00:05:06
Chris Carlin and Jon Hein host Loud Mouths from the Mall of America to discuss the Super Bowl and how they think it will play out.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

THE GAME

The NFC Champion Philadelphia Eagles (15-3) vs. the AFC Champion New England Patriots (15-3) at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis on Sunday, Feb. 4 at 6:30 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER

Thank goodness for domes! Outside the Super Bowl stadium the temperature won't even reach double digits, with a forecast high of 9 and a low of 0. Inside it'll be fine. Hopefully it'll be nice and toasty in front of your TV, too.

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 (Brad Mills)
(Brad Mills)

With the Alex Smith trade complete, it appeared the Redskins were going to allow Kirk Cousins to look for his lucrative deal in free agency. Now, they could have a change of heart.

Washington is considering placing the franchise tag on Cousins just so they could trade him, reports ESPN's Adam Schefter. The reasoning behind this decision would be for the Redskins to get back what they dished out in the trade with the Chiefs. So, instead of getting nothing in return by allowing the hottest free-agent commodity to walk, Washington is looking for something in return. 

However, if they do make that decision to tag him, it comes with a lot of risk considering Cousins is allowed to make his own decision. First, he can wait as long as he wants to sign the franchise tag, which would have the Redskins biting their fingernails as they watch the $34.5 million stay on their books.

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