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Revis Named Best Defensive Player in All of Team Sports


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I'm not so sure 20 million for the 2011/12 seasons is the last thing Tanny wants to see, especially considering that Revis is currently looking for 30+ million for those two years.

Having an average salary of 15 mil does not mean he will be making 15 mil for '11 and '12 respectively.

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The problem is that the Jets agreed to the opt-out clause. Revis can force his way either to a 20mil payday or free agency if they don't come to an agreement. And that's seems like the last thing that Tanny (20mil for '11 and '12) and Rex (free agency) want to see.

If the teams are intent on forcing the cap down or extending to 18 games for the same cap, they still can't pay Revis 16 plus a year. It simply won't work without gutting the rest of the team. They may have to play it out this year under the existing terms?

It looks to me like the economy is in deflation and the teams are expecting revenue to fall. The Jets have already abandoned their PSL to finance strategy and may be faced with lower ticket prices next year just to fill the stadium? Don’t be shocked when people have to cancel Sunday ticket to make their rent or car payment.

People think they are in a vacuum to what's going on in the real world. Deleveraging is happening right before our eyes and yet we expect player salaries and NFL revenue to increase as if nothing has happened. The league, the TV networks and the fans are worried about revenue and their ability to pay for the first time in years.

I wouldn't be shocked if their were empty seats in many NFL venues next year and more teams will either take a hard line on salary caps or more teams will not spend to the cap.

The Jets are set to make a run this year and than it's all about league survival going forward.

Edited by Biggs
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I don't think this response qualifies you for admission into Mensa.

Chew on that for a while genius.

By Shaun Assael

ESPN The Magazine

Archive

Ask Dennis Thurman to describe the dance that Darrelle Revis does before games and the defensive backs coach of the New York Jets stammers. "Well, he kind of -- I mean, there's that -- oh, heck, what can I say? It's just goofy."

It takes a home video that Revis put on YouTube to understand what Thurman means. There, in a Miami hotel before this year's Pro Bowl, the cornerback does a bow-legged, crotch-grabbing, hip-hop jig that looks like something Jay-Z might do if he were learning to polka. It's the last thing you'd expect to see from a young legend in the making, a guy whose timing is so accurate that he has reinspired a cheeky catchphrase -- two-thirds of the world is covered by water; the rest is covered by Revis -- not to mention a Facebook page welcoming you to the Church of Revis Christ.

Jets coaches can't say enough about the fourth-year pro, who keyed a defense that held opponents to a league-low 252 yards per game last season. In fact, it's tough for anybody to categorize Revis, because while there are all sorts of ways to describe offensive success, the dictionary for defense is crude by comparison. To explain how dominating the 5-foot-11 Revis was in holding receivers to a 33 percent completion rate against him in coverage, while allowing a league-low 3.5 yards per attempt, the analysts at Football Outsiders had to reach across the line of scrimmage, declaring Revis' performance the equivalent of a wideout's breaking Jerry Rice's single-season record for receiving yards, or a QB's topping Dan Marino's iconic 1984 passing-yards total.

The Revis effect washes over the Jets. Rex Ryan's 3-4 defense is already the most intricate in the NFL, with linebackers always in motion, shifting between the strong and weak sides, so that offenses never know who's rushing on any given play. When defensive coordinator Mike Pettine says that Revis "helps us heavy up the box," he means that by shutting down the league's best playmakers, Revis frees the other Jets D-backs to crowd the line, which provides more blitzing power. No wonder Gang Green held opponents to just 215 yards a game over their final eight contests before their AFC title game loss to the Colts. "Most teams use their best corner on the second-best receiver and double-team the No. 1," Ryan says. "But with Darrelle we can man-to-man their best. It makes you feel like you're playing with 12 guys."

Ask Revis how he does what he does and he answers with a deep, rolling belly laugh that shakes his shoulders. "I'll show you," he says and lifts up his left shirtsleeve to reveal a tattoo of a robot attacking an alien with a football. It's a vision that came to him in a dream after he spent a night watching sci-fi flicks. "I'm the robot," he says playfully. Body snatcher is more like it. Take his second-quarter interception against the Bengals during a first-round playoff game last January. Chad Ochocinco's fade-stop route had been a money play for Cincinnati during the season, designed to get the ball safely to the receiver's right shoulder as he tiptoed along the sideline. But Revis ran body-to-body with No. 85 at full speed, eyes pointed upfield, waiting until the last second before he turned around and snagged the ball, as if seeing right through Ochocinco's face mask. "It's unusual for a defender to get to the ball, because it's so far out of reach," says Bengals receivers coach Mike Sheppard. "Much less intercept it."

Revis flummoxes offenses the way that Lawrence Taylor, Ray Lewis and Deion Sanders once did. At 24, he is already a household name in the NFL's biggest media market, where the negotiations to make him the highest-paid cornerback in history have vied for media attention with the BP oil spill. Revis waves off reports that he's demanding a $100 million deal, saying he just wants "50 cents more" than Nnamdi Asomugha, the 28-year-old Raiders corner who became the league's highest-paid defensive back last off-season, with a three-year, $45 million deal. But it's clear that Revis has history in mind -- the kind he studied to get here and the kind he wants to make.

Diana Gilbert, who ran track as a kid in the Pennsylvania steel town of Aliquippa, northwest of Pittsburgh, was a single mother who kept her oldest son off gang-infested corners by using the kind of one-liners that Darrelle still quotes with reverence: "Associate with successful people, and you'll be successful." But it was Diana's brother, NFL defensive lineman Sean Gilbert, who showed her boy the way to the big time. The third overall pick in the 1992 draft, Gilbert played 11 seasons; he is best known, however, for sitting out the entire 1997 campaign, to force a trade from the Redskins that got him a seven-year, $46.5 million deal from the Panthers, at the time a record sum for his position. Uncle Sean was at the top of his career in Carolina, and a fixture in his nephew's life, when Darrelle was at Aliquippa High. In those days, "Rell Rev" was a hoops star, the high scorer on his two-time state championship team. But the NBA wasn't really an option for a kid his height, and there wasn't much of a market for a drummer from the Sound the Alarm Ministries chorus. So Darrelle and his uncle watched football game films together, dissecting the one position they knew he could play at the next level: defensive back.

By the time Revis got to Pitt, he had modeled himself after Sanders -- "I loved the way Deion was always up in a guy's face," he says -- and another tough-as-nails Aliquippa alum, Pro Bowl corner Ty Law. Pitt defensive coordinator Paul Rhoads saw in Revis a hard charger who hated to get beat in practice. But what really impressed Rhoads, now the head coach at Iowa State, was that "nobody ever got separation from Darrelle."

Revis studied opponents like he studied jazz drumming, going as far back as their high school game films to get tips on their timing. "I watch how they stand when they're still," he says. "If it's a running play, are they more relaxed? If it's a pass play, are they tenser? Is the heel up or flat? Is the guy grabbing his gloves tight? If I'm in your timing, I'm in your DNA."

The Jets made Revis the 14th pick in the 2007 draft, and it took him time to find his rhythm. For one thing, he had to learn how to tackle (which he did with abandon, notching 87 as a rook). And he still remembers being stunned the first time Randy Moss gave him an elbow in the back while going up for a ball. "I was so bugged out," he says. "I was like, Wow, I got a lot to learn."

When Brett Favre came to town the next year, Revis was a bright spot in a dismal secondary. But he wasn't quite Revis Christ. Facing a barrage of Pro Bowl receivers -- Moss, Brandon Marshall, Larry Fitzgerald -- he allowed receivers a 45 percent completion rate against him. Good, but not elite.

What a difference a new coach makes. Following a late-season collapse, the Jets fired Eric Mangini and hired Ryan, who ushered in a system that makes Revis the most critical defender on the field. Ryan is fond of quoting his dad, Buddy, as saying, "It's easier to hit a guy than cover him." And Revis has made that his mantra. "As D-backs, all we have is those first five yards," he says. "My goal is to make those five yards the hardest I can on you with my hands. I want to be a master of those five yards, because free access is what makes receivers great. My game plan is to get up in their faces. But I also like the little things, whether it's getting in position to tackle or giving the defensive end a call where he goes into the C-gap and makes a play."

The Jets list Revis' weight at 198 pounds, but he's closer to 215, thanks in part to his annual July retreat to Phoenix, where he works out in the 120-degree heat at the Fischer Sports training center alongside Donovan McNabb and Titans corner Rod Hood. As Sheppard, the Bengals coach, puts it, "You can't move him, so you have to go around him." And that's when you know you've arrived on Revis Island, a place patrolled by hands as deceptively smooth as the blunt end of a butcher's mallet.

At a predraft party in Manhattan this spring, Revis ran into Jerry Rice, who said that if he were still playing, he'd lose Revis with a couple of shakes at the line. Revis nodded politely and thought, That's exactly what I'd want you to do. Because in the course of swinging wide and to the outside, Rice would be pinned between Revis and the sideline. In fact, Revis rarely runs more than a few inches away from his man. The Jets coaching staff has been nagging him to drop back a few yards, so he can have more time to react to the ball. But he can't do it. Being that far away dulls his senses, makes him nervous. To feel the hunt, he needs to be closer. "A lot of teams have started to put receivers in motion, so they can get me to back off," he says. "Which is kind of funny, because I'm not going to back off. I'm not going anywhere."

To show what he means, Revis pops a DVD into his MacBook. It's a play from the Jets' game with the Patriots early last season, when New York was down 3-0 in the first quarter and Moss was in motion on a first-and-10. Revis is playing two yards off the line, keeping Moss facing him. After the snap, Moss tries to juke, but Revis is too close, too inside Moss' pads, if not his head. The two end up running 35 yards upfield along the sideline, at which point an errant Tom Brady pass curls into Revis' outstretched hands.

In those moments, you have to marvel at what Thurman calls Revis' "natural balance," which lets him backpedal, pivot and run at full speed with poise. "A lot of guys who run fast lose control of their bodies," Thurman says. "Now, some can improve, but not to that level. At that level, it's just genetics." Adds Will Sullivan, Revis' speed and strength coach at Fischer Sports: "If he can't reach out and get a hand on you in those first five yards, he'll get a body on you down the field. In the NFL, position is power."

Revis coolly sums it up by saying, "When I'm in it, I don't freak out. Everything is like in slow motion." But when Bill Belichick refused to give him any credit for holding Moss to four catches and 24 yards that day, saying Revis was aided by "a lot of over-the-top coverage," it started a debate about whether -- gasp! -- Revis was truly indispensable or just a replaceable cog in Ryan's machine.

It's unlikely Revis would have had the same kind of season anywhere else. Since the Jets' pass rush forces quarterbacks into quick dumps, and he always lines up with the A-wideout, he gets a ton of action. "We don't want him to get bored," quips Pettine. Revis' 31 passes defensed last season were 15 more than he had in 2008, before Ryan arrived. And compare the 96 passes thrown his way with the 25 that Asomugha saw in Oakland. Asomugha was limited by the fact that his coaches lined him up on only one side of the ball, and his weaker teammates get thrown at more often. As a result, he only recorded four passes defensed.

The voters who choose the AP's Defensive Player of the Year presumably knew all that, but they picked Green Bay's Charles Woodson over Revis by a 28-14 vote. And they weren't the only ones offering a contrarian perspective. KC Joyner, the "Football Scientist" and a contributor to ESPN Insider, stirred the blogosphere in June by suggesting that the Jets could make do by putting Dwight Lowery and newly acquired Antonio Cromartie opposite one another, with first-round draft pick Kyle Wilson in the nickelback position, and still have "one of the best secondaries in the league." The resulting backlash -- Ryan blasted the AP vote, and one commentator at thejetsblog.com argued in response to Joyner that getting rid of Revis would be like "the Bulls getting rid of Michael Jordan because B.J. Armstrong and John Paxson were good" -- suggests that Revis has tapped into the local psyche in a big way. His shutdown of Moss (58 yards in two games), Houston's Andre Johnson (35 yards) and Indy's Reggie Wayne (88 yards in two games) last season puts him on a par with Yankees closer Mariano Rivera as a stopper in the minds of New York fans.

Curiously, Revis' jersey is still more recognizable than his face. When his friend Ice-T called recently to say that Snoop Dogg wanted to meet him, Revis grabbed the keys to his Dodge Charger and headed to Hoboken on his own, blending in with the crowd. But this is an off-season full of change for the Jets star, as he becomes more comfortable with his growing fame. He's building a house in Livingston, N.J., with a full-service recording studio, complete with mixing board and instruments, so that his friends can come over to jam. (He also bought a home in Fort Lauderdale last off-season to spend more time with the kids whose names are tattooed on his arms: Deyani Shavae, 4, and Jayden, 2. He's giving himself a new look, too, trading the Charger for a tricked-out Mini Cooper and his silk threads for preppy glasses and bow ties, so "I can go all Andre 3000."

But what were supposed to be low-key negotiations to extend a six-year rookie deal that has earned him $15 million so far, but will shrink to $1 million this season, went off the rails when he staged what appeared to be a sit-out protest one morning at minicamp in June. (For the record, he claimed to be lightheaded.) It was a curious statement from a player whose practice habits are so fierce. It also gave heartburn to a coaching staff that needs Revis to lead in the locker room. The Jets said goodbye to a trio of veterans: safety Kerry Rhodes and running backs Thomas Jones and Leon Washington. Meanwhile, the team has added Cromartie, who reportedly needed a $500,000 advance on his salary to deal with at least five separate paternity suits, as well as Santonio Holmes, the troubled former Steeler's wideout who spent the spring explaining why cops met with him at the Pittsburgh airport for refusing to shut off his iPod during a plane landing. "Darrelle has the respect of everyone in the locker room and the league," Ryan says. "Now he has to understand he can use that like Tom Brady does in New England. He has to make the players around him accountable."

When Revis was still in high school, his Uncle Sean took him to look at expensive watches in a Charlotte mall. "I love watches, but that wasn't the point," Darrelle says. "He wanted to show me the difference between being rich and having class."

With that lesson learned, Gilbert is trying to keep his nephew focused on history. "A lot of great players have 10-year careers, but just a few have awesome ones," Gilbert says. "How many guys get to have an impact?"

It seems hard to imagine that No. 24 can outdo himself this season. A couple of slips on the New Meadowlands Stadium turf, and he'll easily give up more than the 2 TDs he allowed in 2009. But of course there's always room for improvement. Thurman says that Revis tipped away four balls that could have been game-changing interceptions last season, and that by playing a little more off the ball, he'll improve his vision.

Looking at the new schedule, Revis picks out the matchups he's anticipating most. He has never faced Minnesota's Sidney Rice, or Donald Driver and Greg Jennings from Green Bay. "Oh, and Calvin Johnson," he adds, pointing to the Jets' date in Detroit on Nov. 7. "That's a good one too."

Does he worry that opponents won't throw at him as often this year? He starts that belly laugh until his shoulders are shaking again. "You know, the other guys trust their player too," he says. "That's their big playmaker. They're still going to throw at him. So am I worried? No. As long as I'm watching that guy, I'll get my chances."

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Having an average salary of 15 mil does not mean he will be making 15 mil for '11 and '12 respectively.

Granted, but there's two problems with assuming it would be less, (1) he's obviously looking for a bonus, which alone will greatly increase the cost of these next two years, and (2) given the circumstances do you really expect Revis to accept a back-loaded contract? That's quite unlikely.

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If the teams are intent on forcing the cap down or extending to 18 games for the same cap, they still can't pay Revis 16 plus a year. It simply won't work without gutting the rest of the team. They may have to play it out this year under the existing terms?

It looks to me like the economy is in deflation and the teams are expecting revenue to fall. The Jets have already abandoned their PSL to finance strategy and may be faced with lower ticket prices next year just to fill the stadium? Don

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Granted, but there's two problems with assuming it would be less, (1) he's obviously looking for a bonus, which alone will greatly increase the cost of these next two years, and (2) given the circumstances do you really expect Revis to accept a back-loaded contract? That's quite unlikely.

Why give him one big signing bonus up front when you can give him 2 in different seasons like the 49ers did with Patrick Willis?

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For the first time ever I'm not getting my usual 250-300 dollar seats on the 50 yd line behind the Jet bench this year when the Jets visit miami.. This is a killer economy that I haven't seen since the Carter years in the 70's.. Yet the players are blind to this?? It's important to get a reality check besides their paycheck for the NFL players..

The players do charity work and help the community, for the most part. Many of them donate a lot to charity. In most cases, that's more than Joe Taxpayer does during his daily grind.

But at the end of the day, they work in a thriving multi multi billion dollar industry and they get paid like it. If it bothers you that much, maybe you should just watch Arena Football. Those guys don't get paid crap.

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The players do charity work and help the community, for the most part. Many of them donate a lot to charity. In most cases, that's more than Joe Taxpayer does during his daily grind.

But at the end of the day, they work in a thriving multi multi billion dollar industry and they get paid like it. If it bothers you that much, maybe you should just watch Arena Football. Those guys don't get paid crap.

And why is the NFL a thriving business?? It's because of Joe Tax payer who covers the bills.. BTW Charity work to my knowledge gives players tax write offs unless thats been changed. And that arena football comment is really low class which I have come to expect from some posters on this board..

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If the teams are intent on forcing the cap down or extending to 18 games for the same cap, they still can't pay Revis 16 plus a year. It simply won't work without gutting the rest of the team. They may have to play it out this year under the existing terms?

It looks to me like the economy is in deflation and the teams are expecting revenue to fall. The Jets have already abandoned their PSL to finance strategy and may be faced with lower ticket prices next year just to fill the stadium? Don

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people talk about the economy but the NFL plays by it's own rules.

they have a multi year network tv contract worth billions.

they have a multi year sunday ticket contract worth billions.

they sell the rights to the super bowl... again worth at least a billion...

The Tim Tebow rookie jersey has sold more than any other rookie jersey... ever.

they aren't hurting for money.

This argument that the cap will go down is speculation.

It's never actually happened in the history of the league.

the Cap always goes up. There might not even be a cap in the new CBA. Especially if they expand to 18 regular season games there's no conceivable way the union would agree to more games and less salary.

there is no cap right now. People claim signing revis will kill the Jets chances of signing other players, but right now the Jets could sign all 4 core players to "max deals" and it doesn't affect anything - cause there's no cap.

The only limiting factor is Woody running out of money.

Edited by bitonti
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The economy has been in the toilet for a while, and all the NFL has done during that time was buy another building to stack their money in. The NFL is run by smart, greedy bast*rds. They will get their money even if the blue collar fan is edged out of the live experience, even if the blue collar fan is forced to buy their jerseys from some half-rate internet distributor hosted out of a bar in Taiwan. Because people love their product and find other ways to enjoy it.

8 NFL teams franchise value dropped last year. TV add revenue is on the decline, the Jets can't sell out the stadium for the first time in years.

You can't sustain a model that depends on increasing revenue every year to fund increasing salaries also known as operating revenue in a deflating economy that relies on the public for its funding. The public is tapped out.

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was the NYJ one of those eight?

Both the Jets and Giants were flat. Think about that a new 1.6 billion dollar stadium, new facilities, an AFC finals and franchise value hasn't increased at all year over year. Not to mention the PSL generated revenue to help pay off stadium financing is obviously going to be well under the projections from when the stadium was built and any real estate the Jets purchased for their offices and training facilities has significantly dropped in value.

Edited by Biggs
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8 NFL teams franchise value dropped last year. TV add revenue is on the decline, the Jets can't sell out the stadium for the first time in years.

You can't sustain a model that depends on increasing revenue every year to fund increasing salaries also known as operating revenue in a deflating economy that relies on the public for its funding. The public is tapped out.

What was the location of each of those 8 teams?

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in a deflating economy ... The public is tapped out.

by the way mr bernanke, :character0282:

deflation is defined as falling prices over a given period, the consumer price index is up 2% over the last 12 months.* the economy is volatile but it's not deflating, at least not yet or at any serious rate.

there are alot of uncertainties but it didn't stop the Saints from paying Evans, the Niners from paying Willis, the Texans from paying Ryans etc.

JMO no naming rights and Woody facing debt in the high 9 figures is why this deal isn't done.

there's no "economic uncertainty" argument that holds water.

* http://www.newsweek-interactive.org/2010/07/02/deflation-nation.html

Edited by bitonti
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by the way mr bernanke, :character0282:

deflation is defined as falling prices over a given period, the consumer price index is up 2% over the last 12 months.* the economy is volatile but it's not deflating, at least not yet or at any serious rate.

there are alot of uncertainties but it didn't stop the Saints from paying Evans, the Niners from paying Willis, the Texans from paying Ryans etc.

JMO no naming rights and Woody facing debt in the high 9 figures is why this deal isn't done.

there's no "economic uncertainty" argument that holds water.

* http://www.newsweek-interactive.org/2010/07/02/deflation-nation.html

For the full year 09 it was down .04% and while it has been up this year it was down substantially in May and we are clearly headed down right now.

By the way they calculate the cost to rent in housing not to buy. If you include the cost to buy a home obviously we are in deflation right now.

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