Tom Brady, a Jet? It wasn’t far from happening, as a source tells Gary Myers of the New York Daily News. One scout — Jesse Kaye, now an advisor with New York — strongly argued for Gang Green to select Brady late in the 2000 draft. Even after the Jets drafted Chad Pennington in the first round, Kaye believed in Brady enough to lobby hard for head coach Bill Parcells to select the Michigan quarterback, and per Myers, almost stood on a table and yelled at Big Tuna. Ruefully, New York drafted North Carolina defensive back Tony Scott with pick No. 179; 20 picks later, the Pats selected Brady, and the rest is history. Here’s more from the AFC.
- It won’t be easy for the Patriots to replace running back Stevan Ridley, writes Ben Volin of the Boston Globe. While New England has Shane Vereen, Brandon Bolden, and James White on the roster, none is the type of power back that was Ridley. The Pats’ best bet, per Volin, might be to promote third-year running back Jonas Gray from the practice squad. At 230 pounds, Gray could act as the “thunder” to the other backs’ “lightning.”
- Before signing veteran offensive lineman Will Svitek yesterday, the Titans also worked OLs Guy Whimper and Martin Wallace, according to Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean (Twitter link). Tennessee is attempting to bolster its offensive depth following a season-ending injury to left tackle Michael Roos.
- Brandon Marshall looks back fondly at his time with the Dolphins, writes Adam L. Jahns of the Chicago Tribune. Marshall, who played in Miami from 2010-11, feels the Fins were just a solid quarterback away from being a contender. The star receiver was eventually traded to the Bears in 2012 for two third-round picks.
- In a video from the Cleveland Plain-Dealer, Browns general manager Ray Farmer discusses the differences between scouting college prospects and evaluating potential free agent fits.