Tuesday was proof once again that God doesn’t take away man’s free will as the number one free agent on the market Darrelle Revis became a New York Jet once more. Revis will reportedly be getting a 5-year $70 million dollar contract with $39 million guaranteed.
The deal makes Revis the richest corner back in NFL history, but it also begs the question for Patriots nation – who’s next up? After also losing Brandon Browner earlier in the day, the Patriots are now looking at a secondary that is led by Kyle Arrington, Alfonzo Dennard, Logan Ryan and Justin Green. In short, it’s not good enough, but it may be all they have heading into next season.
It was reported by Tom Curran that the Patriots highest bid stood at $35 million guaranteed and they didn’t budge. Darrelle Revis isn’t just a player. He’s elite at the corner position and the more alarming part is the lack of depth there now at corner. I would have gone higher, but that may not have even been enough.
Do the Patriots want a discounted Charles Tilman, who is 34 years old? They might want to take a shot on Antonio Cromartie. I would swallow my pride if I were the Pats and bring back Browner, but that’s unlikely. Either way, among free agents, there is no one close to the caliber player of Darrelle Revis.
The pain for Pats fans is there, but you have to understand – Revis wants to be a Jet:
So how does this move affect the Patriots? Well, regardless of who comes here in free agency I think you should ready yourself for the number 25th ranked pass defense again and I’m not kidding. I think the Patriots can limit the impact of the Revis loss most by going out and getting a few pass rushers. A good pass rush has proven tough for even Brady to handle and if you can consistently get to the quarterback without blitzing, the Patriots will be in better shape.
The Patriots filed tampering charges against the Jets back in January over Revis so the Pats might get some sort of compensation there.
With Revis now gone, the Patriots will save that $20 million on their cap and that will open up the possibility for multiple pass rushers to join Chandler Jones and Rob Ninkovich and that’s the Patriots best chance on defense in my opinion.
The real bread and butter of free agency this season is on the offensive side of the ball and some of what the Patriots saved in losing Revis should go to adding a consistent weapon for Brady: Andre Johnson, Percy Harvin, Michael Crabtree, Reggie Bush, CJ Spiller, etc. are all free agents and particularly Johnson and Crabtree would be appealing to add to this offense. Reports centered around Harvin earlier in the day, but Harvin is really more of what they already have.
These are just names out there. The truth is, no one is going to know for sure what the plan is because I think the plan was to keep Revis. Now, it becomes about retooling and figuring out who’s available via free agency and trade. Before 9pm today, they had no reason or money to.
I’m not going to kill the Patriots when the player so clearly wanted to be in New York. The Patriots and Bill Belichick are probably agitated about losing him within the division and furthermore the Jets. Life will go on without Revis for Belichick and company, who now find themselves among the top teams with money to spend.
Revis doesn’t make the Jets any more of a threat to you than before with an unproven coach and no quarterback. Time will tell the Patriots approach to replacing what Revis brought them, but I don’t think the AFC East is all the sudden up for grabs.