Santonio Holmes was causing rifts in the New York Jets‘ locker room at the end of last season, but that hasn’t prevented them from committing $15.25 million to him for the 2012 season and making him essentially a franchise player.
Holmes finished last season with 51 catches for 654 yards and eight touchdowns, but the Jets watched the playoffs from home. He was a really valuable pickup for the franchise before the 2010 season when the acquired him for a fifth round pick.
The former Super Bowl MVP has not been as productive as some of the elite wide receivers in the league, but the Jets had no reason to eat over seven million dollars and simply cut him loose. Rex Ryan is already somewhat of a ring leader, so why not keep the circus show going?
I don’t think Holmes was the reason this team didn’t make the playoffs, but certainly having so many personalities like his is somewhat detrimental to a locker room, especially when teammates are allegedly researching his contract to see if cutting him is feasible.
With so much money committed to Holmes, the Jets are going to need to make sure he can be effective. Picking 16th in the draft, they have a shot to get one of the top receivers in the entire draft to supplement his abilities. Getting Plaxico Burress was a solid move, but the Jets could also use another target on the outside to make Holmes that much better.
It’s also possible that the Jets go running back early since that is what their offense is based off of, and LaDainian Tomlinson is a free agent this offseason. Not to mention, Shonn Greene has also been somewhat of a disappointment as a former third round pick.
Either way, this is a really big investment for the Jets, and if they can’t capitalize this season, Rex Ryan could be on the hot seat.