Jets G.M. Mike Tannenbaum addressed with the media on Sunday the status of talks with cornerback Darrelle Revis. One thing Tannenbaum didn’t say, presumably because he values his job, is that his hands have been tied by a reluctance/refusal on the part of ownership to authorize making the kind of offer that would get Revis to end his holdout and report for camp.
things that we all agreed upon is that Darrelle outplayed his contract and it
needed to be addressed and that he has three years to go on his contract,” Tannenbaum said. “With
that said, we have to find something that works for both sides and we remain
committed to doing that.”
Tannenbaum also confirmed what Revis has contended throughout the offseason — that the Jets approached Revis about tearing up the final three years of his contract.
“The Tuesday after we lost
the Colts game [for the AFC title] we were in Mobile, AL [for the Senior Bowl] and we called his agent and said we have to
get something done,” Tannenbaum said.
Tannenbaum deftly avoided addressing the real problem that is preventing a deal (i.e., guaranteed money) by explaining only that the two sides can’t agree on total compensation. On the surface, it’s hard for anyone to dispute that contention, because Revis has made it clear he wants to be paid 50 cents more than Raiders cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha, who’s making $15.1 million per year.
As we understand it, the long-term offers that the Jets have made to Revis include the same tools utilized by the team when signing tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson to his long-term deal — namely, a hollow guarantee that does nothing to address Revis’ concern that a serious injury like the one running back Leon Washington suffered in 2009 would result in the Jets never paying him truly big money.
But there’s also a connection between guaranteed money and total compensation. To get to the average Revis wants, the 30-percent rule and the reallocation rule compel the Jets to utilize the ultimate form of guaranteed money. The signing bonus.
And that’s where Tannenbaum’s hands are tied. (It only took us six paragraphs to get to the point.) We’re told that owner Woody Johnson refuses to authorize Tannenbaum to extend the kind of signing bonus money necessary to get the deal done.
And so it all comes back to, in our view, a failure of communication at the time the Jets opted to let the renegotiation cat out of the bag. They didn’t say — and they don’t claim they said — that the Asomugha contract is an aberration or that the 30-percent rule and the reallocation rule will limit as a practical matter what the Jets can do.
Then again, maybe they did. And maybe the failure comes not from telling it to Revis, but from telling it to the rest of us.
Either way, it’s a mess. And as we pointed out last night, Revis and his family (including his uncle, Sean Gilbert) are dug in.
“Darrelle’s actions spoke volumes,” agent Neil Schwartz told us by phone last night after declining to discuss the details of the situation, “and his current silence is deafening.”
That’s the one key point that hasn’t been emphasized in connection with the Revis holdout. Though Revis did plenty of talking in June, he said nothing on Sunday. Our guess is that he won’t be saying anything more, unless and until he’s sitting at a table answering questions about the new contract he just signed.