Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images
A speedy resolution to Darrelle Revis's status would help the Jets finalize their plans for the 2013 secondary.
The New York Post says the 49ers want Darrell Revis. Sporting News says they do not.
Next to quarterback, the personnel issue that is drawing the most attention for the Jets this offseason is the fate of Darrelle Revis. It's a complex matter that lacks a perfect solution. Here are Idzik's alternatives and their consequences:
Keep Revis long-term: On paper, the Jets will have two Pro Bowl cornerbacks. That assumes that Revis returns to pre-injury form and that Antonio Cromartie maintains his 2012 performance level.
Two shutdown cornerbacks might make losing safeties LaRon Landry and Yeremiah Bell easier to take. Again, in theory, corners of Revis's and Cromartie's caliber would require less help in coverage. The Jets might get by with starting safeties Josh Bush and Antonio Allen.
However, they'll have to make Revis the highest-paid defensive player in football. That will cost salary cap space that the Jets might need for other things, unless the higher payments are scheduled for the end of the deal.
Trade Revis now: Trading or releasing Revis means absorbing a $3 million salary cap hit. What's more, teams will offer less for him because he has yet to play after last year's injury. However, the Jets will spare themselves the expense of the long-term deal that Revis will inevitably demand. If they make the trade before March 17, they will save the $3 million cash outlay in reporting, roster and workout bonuses. The trade-off will be diminished cap space with which to rebuild the secondary.
Play Revis now: Revis can become an unrestricted free agent after 2013. If the Jets do not trade him quickly, they risk receiving no compensation from his next employer, who will benefit from the opportunity to evaluate him on the field.
If the Jets trade Revis soon, they can save out-of-pocket cash but receive less in exchange. If they delay, they risk losing bonus money. Plus, Revis's impending free agency might cause potential trading partners to wait until his contract ends.
It looks like the best thing for Idzik to do is to commit himself one way or the other before the bonus deadlines. It's time to let Revis go or begin renegotiating his contract. Otherwise, he becomes a new sideshow, which is not a good start at regaining football credibility.