There was some good news on the Darrelle Revis holdout front on Tuesday: The Jets aren't going to trade their best defensive player.
Other than that, though, things were uniformly negative in the increasingly public and increasingly acrimonious standoff between team and player. Woody Johnson, doing a media blitz in recent days, claimed that Revis's camp turned down his offer to come to a negotiating session. That claim was called a "blatant lie" by Neil Schwartz, Revis's agent, and the Jets returned fire by calling Schwartz a blatant liar in return.
Rex Ryan, for his part, is doing his best to sell the notion that the Jets are going to be just fine without Revis in the lineup this season. According to Ryan, the guy who previously couldn't go five minutes without hyperbolic praise for his cornerback, the Jets have "everything we need here on defense." If that's true, it's pretty odd that the Jets are so opposed to trading him. Why not get rid of the headache if you're just as good without Revis?
Because they aren't and because Ryan, of all people, knows that they aren't nearly as good. You'd hope that Revis is smart enough to know that this kind of nonsense is just coachspeak boilerplate that ultimately means nothing but is kinda required as part of the team's unified front in the negotiations. If he wants to get upset about something, he should direct his anger at Johnson.
As part of his aforementioned media blitz, Johnson appeared on ESPN and addressed the previously agreed upon notion that the Jets approached Revis about a contract extension. Johnson claims that isn't true, despite G.M. Mike Tannenbaum being on record saying that Revis has outplayed a contract which needs to be addressed, and went even further.
"I don't think he was promised anything, as far as I know. And the wonderful thing about a contract is that verbals don't mean anything because that's the whole point of writing something down. So if somebody inadvertently said something -- which I don't think they did -- it really has no merit."
Ever hear the saying that a man is only as good as his word? If you have, please explain it to Woody Johnson. It takes a special kind of man to argue that what a man says has absolutely no bearing on how you view him.
If verbal communication from members of the organization have no merit, why should we believe a single thing that's come from the Jets since this impasse began? Why should we believe that they've made a competitive contract offer? And, most importantly, if the Jets have no interest in giving Revis a new contract, why are they making these offers in the first place?
Sounds like ignoring everything Johnson says is a pretty good rule to follow going forward. At least there's now a handy website to pass along the only information we need without any Johnsonian spin.
IsRevisSignedYet.com asks only that question. As long as the answer remains "No," no other words really matter.
Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City and is a contributor to FanHouse.com and ProFootballTalk.com in addition to his duties for NBCNewYork.com. You can follow him on Twitter.
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