Jets Owner Talks Smith, CBs, Ryan, Idzik

Jets owner Woody Johnson spoke to reporters today, and while he didn’t have any significant updates to provide, the session acted as a sort of state of the union session, with Johnson addressing a number of Jets-related topics and issues. Rich Cimini of, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, Brian Costello of the New York Post, and Newsday’s Kimberly Martin were among the scribes providing updates, so we’ve rounded up the highlights from the Jets owner below (all links go to Twitter). Let’s dive in….

  • Asked about the team’s lack of a splash in free agency, Johnson said that the Jets would prefer to build through the draft. “We’ll do an occasional free agent, but the free agent market isn’t a panacea,” the owner added.
  • Despite Geno Smith‘s erratic player, Johnson still has plenty of confidence in the young signal-caller, suggesting that he continues to believe Smith can be a “franchise quarterback.”
  • According to Johnson, he doesn’t regret not signing free agent cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, and thinks the Jets adequately addressed the CB position in the offseason. The owner cited injuries as one reason the secondary may have underperformed so far, and said he expects the team to be fine now that Dee Milliner is returning.
  • Johnson on the Dimitri Patterson debacle, which resulted in the cornerback being suspended and then cut by the team prior to the regular season, after he signed as a free agent in the spring: “Just like any portfolio, we have a portfolio of players. Some are going to be good, some aren’t.”
  • Asked if Rex Ryan has to lead the Jets to the playoffs this season in order to keep his job, Idzik replied, “We don’t look at it that way,” and indicated that a decision on Ryan will be made at the end of the year.
  • The Jets still have about $20MM in cap space, but Johnson said he doesn’t put any constraints whatsoever on the club’s spending, and that GM John Idzik has full autonomy to use that cap room. Johnson also said that he believes GM John Idzik is fully invested in winning this year.
  • According to Johnson, Idzik’s deliberate approach to decision-making is one of the reasons he was hired.
  • Johnson was noncommittal when one reporter asked if he’s cut or keep a player who was found guilty of domestic violence.
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