AFC East Notes: Fitzpatrick, Brady, Branch

Manish Mehta of The New York Daily News certainly doesn’t believe Ryan Fitzpatrick is the Jets‘ long-awaited savior at quarterback, but given Fitzpatrick’s performance in the team’s preseason win over the Giants on Saturday night, along with the Jets’ corps of talented wideouts and loaded defense, Mehta does think the Harvard grad could keep Gang Green in playoff contention all season.

Now for some more links from the AFC East:

  • Judge Richard Berman is set to meet with NFL and NFLPA reps in court again today regarding the Tom Brady case, and a source in the Patriots quarterback’s camp tells Josina Anderson of (TwitLonger link) that, barring a settlement, a decision is expected by week’s end. Meanwhile, Ian Rapoport of tweets that Giants owner John Mara is attending today’s hearing.
  • Ben Volin of The Boston Globe wonders if the Patriots regret signing Alan Branch to a two-year deal worth as much as $6.6MM this offseason. Branch played well for New England in 2014, but he skipped the team’s offseason workout program this year and arrived to training camp overweight and out of shape. Branch has a history of similar behavior, and since the Pats have some defensive line depth and only gave Branch $700K in guaranteed money, it would not be hard for the team to move on.
  • Armando Salguero of The Miami Herald would not be surprised if the Dolphins made the somewhat unorthodox decision to try and sign kicker Andrew Franks to the team’s practice squad. Salguero notes that Franks has tremendous upside. (Twitter link).
  • The Dolphins have their starting lineup mostly set as the regular season approaches, but the one exception is who will start at corner opposite Brent Grimes, writes Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald. Jamar Taylor was the leader before injuring his quadriceps, and Brice McCain hasn’t locked up the spot in his absence. Beasley writes that the great pressure the defense has gotten on the quarterback has made it difficult to evaluate the cornerback depth chart with the starting unit.

Rob DiRe contributed to this post.

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