With the NFL trade deadline set for Tuesday at 4 p.m., ET, the Jets surprisingly find themselves in the playoff hunt.
Sporting a 4-4 record, the team currently sits a half-game behind the 4-3 San Diego Chargers for the final playoff spot in the AFC. As tempting as it may seem, any deal made would likely be beneficial to them next year and beyond rather than help them make a postseason push for the current season. Whether they are willing to part with draft picks in either scenario remains to be seen.
While cornerback is a big weakness for the team right now, players expected to be available such as Nnandi Asomugha, DeAngelo Hall, and Asante Samuel are veterans viewed more as rentals than long-term solutions. Given the struggles of the defensive backfield in recent weeks, it can't hurt to make a phone call and see what their respective teams are asking for in return. But the Jets aren't going to break the bank for any of them.
The trade market is saturated with wide receivers and the Jets do have a need at the position. Gang Green is most likely going to release Santonio Holmes after the season and the roster currently lacks anyone who is a prototypical number one option.
Holmes is due a lot of money next year and injuries and underwhelming play have rendered him expendable. David Nelson has performed well since signing with the team a few weeks ago but he's more of a second or third option. Stephen Hill and Jeremy Kerley are still young but neither has shown much consistency.
Should the Jets want to pursue outside alternatives, Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Gordon is often mentioned in trade rumors. Gordon is a playmaker in his second season currently making very little money. If he were to get dealt, the price tag might be a bit too steep for the Jets. Any talks would probably involve a first round pick. Making matters more complicated, his next positive drug test will result in a one-year suspension.
Greg Little, Gordon's teammate, could be on the move and wouldn't require more than a late-round pick. Little has struggled with drops in his three seasons in Cleveland but possesses enough physical tools to remain an intriguing option at a low price.
Justin Blackmon would be an interesting addition for the Jets but he too comes with question marks. Blackmon was selected fifth overall in the 2012 draft and is gifted enough to be a big part of the team's offense for years to come. Unfortunately, he's already violated the league's substance abuse policy twice. Given his troubles and the fact the Jacksonville Jaguars are so devoid of talent, moving their star receiver for additional picks could be on the table. The Jags might be willing to listen if they received a good enough offer to help with their rebuilding efforts.
Receivers with local ties such as Hakeem Nicks of the Giants and former Rutgers standout Kenny Britt could be had but they're available for a reason and the Jets would be wise to stay away from them. Nicks is in a contract year and always seems to be injured. The Titans are practically willing to give Britt away at this point as he's worn out his welcome in Tennessee due to poor play and off-field issues.
Should a more tempting name become available, the Jets do have an additional draft pick, likely in the third round, from the Darrelle Revis trade to work with. The team doesn't appear to be in panic mode so they have the liberty of being patient and seeing how the market plays out.
General manager John Idzik has a reputation for being smart and salary cap savvy from his days with the Seattle Seahawks, which bodes well for the Jets at a time like this. If the right deal comes along at the right price, great. If not, the team will pursue other options in the offseason via free agency and the draft.