NEW YORK — RGIII in NYC?
Free-agent quarterback Robert Griffin III was visiting with the New York Jets on Friday, two people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press.
Griffin was cut by the Washington Redskins on Monday, ending a tumultuous tenure in which the No. 2 overall draft pick immediately became an NFL star in 2012 before his career spiraled to the point where he spent all last season on the sideline because of injuries and inconsistency.
The people spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the team does not announce player visits.
Griffin’s visit was first reported by ESPN.
One of the people told the AP that the Jets’ focus remained on re-signing Ryan Fitzpatrick, who set a franchise record with 31 touchdown passes last season, and the move to give Griffin a look is simply the team doing its due diligence.
It could also be leverage for the Jets and general manager Mike Maccagnan, who are locked in a stalemate with Fitzpatrick over his value. The veteran quarterback said last season he’d like to return to New York, something coach Todd Bowles echoed from the team’s standpoint.
But the question has become: at what cost?
The 33-year-old Fitzpatrick has been mostly a journeyman throughout his career, with the Jets being his sixth NFL team. But he thrived in New York after being reunited last year with offensive co-ordinator Chan Gailey, with whom he had his previous best years in Buffalo.
Fitzpatrick could be seeking considerably more than what Philadelphia gave to the unproven Chase Daniel, who got a three-year deal worth $21 million with incentives. It’s unclear if the Jets are willing to go much higher than that.
Griffin, who is only 26, could come cheaply considering his stunning decline in Washington.
He was the Heisman Trophy winner at Baylor in 2011 and Washington traded three first-round picks plus a second-rounder to St. Louis to move up to No. 2 overall and draft Griffin. He won the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year award in 2012 while leading the Redskins to the NFC East title. But he tore a knee ligament late that season, and he hasn’t approached the success he had that year.
Griffin spent all last season on the sideline behind Kirk Cousins and even Colt McCoy, and didn’t take a single snap in a regular-season game. By cutting Griffin, the Redskins saved $16 million off their payroll for this season.