As Muhammad Wilkerson begins another standout season, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News begins wondering if he could be the trade chip that lands the Jets a quarterback.
After noting the Jets prefer the skill set of currently troubled 2013 defensive rookie of the year Sheldon Richardson to Wilkerson, Mehta speculates whether Wilkerson’s contract-year campaign could still benefit the Jets down the road by allowing them to keep the defensive end around for trade purposes. Using the Chiefs’ 2008 trade of Jared Allen to the Vikings as an example, Mehta proposes the Jets use a non-exclusive franchise tag on Wilkerson after this season and dangle him in trade talks, as Kansas City did seven years ago.
He continues in saying the only way the Jets could keep both of their star ends is one agreeing to take far less than their value, which will not happen. Of course, this talk of trading Wilkerson is contingent on Richardson re-routing his career, which is far from a certainty at this point.
Here is some other news from around the league.
- Jimmy Graham‘s level of happiness with the Seahawks has been one of the key points of discussion in the NFL this week, and the sixth-year tight end might not experience a morale uptick, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk offers. While noting satisfaction could come in time as Graham and Russell Wilson increase their rapport, Florio suggests Graham is not a fit for what the Seahawks do. Graham’s begun to lobby for Wilson to not shy away from throwing his way, even if he’s covered. “Obviously, Drew (Brees) wasn’t running the read options, Graham told media. If (Wilson) is in trouble, he was going to read me, and I was the option. … I tell Russ every day, it don’t matter (if coverage is tight) and sometimes just throw it because sometimes it just doesn’t matter.”
- Sufficiently recovered from a high-ankle sprain, Eric Fisher will return to the Chiefs‘ starting lineup against the Packers, doing so at right tackle now, after sitting behind waiver pickup Jah Reid in the first two games, reports Kevin Patra of NFL.com. Although Andy Reid denied the speculation Fisher delayed his recovery in order to not have to face J.J. Watt in the Chiefs’ opener, Fisher hasn’t remotely lived up to expectations as a No. 1 pick and will begin a critical campaign in hopes of rescuing his career.
- Nick Toon‘s workout itinerary now includes a stop in St. Louis, as the Rams examined the former Saints backup, per Florio. The Rams also worked out wideouts Issac Blakeney, Kain Colter, DaVaris Daniels, Jordan Leslie, Tyler Rutenbeck and Taylor Washington. Florio opines that the Rams, who carry six healthy receivers presently, are sending a message to some in the unimpressive group. Toon also worked out for the Cowboys and Titans this month after being waived by the Saints.
- After news emerged on the timeline for the Tom Brady case, Michael Coyne of the Massachusetts School of Law explains to CSNNE.com how that will affect the 38-year-old quarterback’s season, should the Patriots return to the playoffs as expected. While distractions are inevitable given how this has unfolded, Coyne points out Brady will not have to be present for the appeal hearings.
- Johnny Manziel fumbling twice in each of the Browns‘ first two games was the driving force behind them opting to relegate him back to the bench in favor of Josh McCown, Terry Pluto of Cleveland.com writes. The Browns lost possession on both mishaps against the Jets and recovered each loose ball against the Titans. “The No. 1 thing when you play quarterback is you have to protect the football,” Browns OC John DeFilippo told media. “. . . If you don’t protect the football, then you’re not giving yourself the best chance to win.”
- A knee injury this week during practice will keep Trent Cole from traveling with the Colts to Nashville, Tenn., for their Week 3 tilt with the Titans, reports Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star (on Twitter). Robert Mathis‘ workload will increase as a result, Holder reports.