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10 Answers from Mike Maccagnan

Posted Jan 14, 2016

Jets GM Responds to Questions About Ryan Fitzpatrick, Muhammad Wilkerson, the Draft & His 2015 Team


Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan sat with the team's beat reporters early this afternoon for a half-hour debriefing following the Jets' season coming to a close at Buffalo with a 10-6 record.

He demurred on giving himself a grade for his first season in the GM's office as well as providing specifics on several player personnel questions. But he did expand on some points about the Jets, their quarterbacks, their defense and their future heading toward Season No. 2 for both himself and head coach Todd Bowles. Here are excerpts from his answers to 10 questions from reporters:


On if he wants to bring potential free agent Ryan Fitzpatrick back as QB...

"We’d like very much to get him back, based on how he played this year. But I don’t really want to get into the speculation aspect of it. I would simply leave it at we’ll see how this thing works out."


Bowles on Fitz: "We want him back...If he comes back, he'll be the starter."

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On how he sees Geno Smith's and Bryce Petty's futures with the Jets...

"Bryce has made a lot of progress and we're kind of excited to have another offseason with him. ... I would say with Geno, he's under contract, we like the progress he's made and how he even handled the situation in the summer. Right now, I would say going forward we're going to see how Geno and Bryce progress with the offseason and go from there, and that's assuming we're able to re-sign Ryan."


On if he will target quarterback or any other position in the draft...

"It’s such an important position that I think every NFL team probably goes into the draft, with maybe a few exceptions of people who have really well established quarterbacks, of always looking at that position as a position of interest. We’ll be no different than them. I don’t want to sit there and say, 'With the 20th pick we're going to be targeting a quarterback.' Two things. One is you don’t want to tell the 31 other teams what you’re going to do. But I also think that’s kind of a flawed approach to a certain degree."


On if he thinks he got a good return on the investment to bring Darrelle Revis back to the Jets...

"I think so overall. ... I think Darrelle is a very good corner. As Todd said, sometimes they have good games and bad games and it comes with that position, the style of defense we play, too, but I’m very happy we have Darrelle back in the organization, not only from his ability as a player, but also from what he kind of brought to the team. ... There are a lot of areas where you can look at stats and we actually got better at, which I felt was a positive thing. So from my standpoint, I know it was a very aggressive move on our part for what we did, but I’m very happy with the results from it."


On if he wants to sign DE Muhammad Wilkerson to a long-term deal…

"Needless to say, Muhammad played very well this year. I think with him, and all of our players that we had on the team last year, we’re going to try to figure out ways to keep as many of them as we can. But I don’t want to go too far down that road because, like I said, it’s early. In a perfect world, we’d keep everybody on the roster, but we have to see how this thing unfolds. ...  At the end of the day, yes, we would very much like to have Muhammad back in the organization. Now how we manage to do that, time will tell."


On if the franchise tag is something he would consider using this year…

"It’s at the discretion of every team to use, I think to kind of hold things together and to protect things. Absolutely we would consider using the franchise tag. I know it always pertains back to Mo [Wilkerson] and not to get too far ahead of ourselves, it’s one of those things, for the most part, if we get to that point, we’ll do what’s in the best interest of the team."


On if Wilkerson would be one of the players he would consider using the franchise tag on…

"We would, potentially, yes. It’s not a big secret or anything like that."


On if it is financially possible to keep the defensive line together with Damon Harrison and Wilkerson being free agents…

"Hypothetically or philosophically, it’s not impossible. Those are determinations we’re going to work out ourselves with our team going forward. Quite frankly, you can do many different things in terms of how you manage your money with the salary cap."


On assessing last year's draft class after one season in the NFL...

"The guys we took we're excited about. Leonard [Williams], obviously, I thought played very well and has a very bright future. Devin [Smith] got hurt, which is unfortunate and he was doing better before he got hurt. ... [Lorenzo] Mauldin showed some things as a pass rusher and we think he has a bright upside. ... Bryce unfortunately didn't play, but we liked working with him as a potential prospect. Both [Jarvis] Harrison and [Deon] Simon, those guys will have the biggest jump after their first offseason where we'll really know what they can do. ... I think at the end of the day I'm a bit of a perfectionist, like a lot of people in my business ... but for the most part we liked the guys we took."



On how he evaluated the Jets as a team this season...

"We came up short in six games, but the one nice thing about our season was watching the team kind of come together in the locker room, and that’s some of the stuff, those intangible things, that are hard to judge and so I felt we made progress. I thought at the end of the season we came together as a team, we were doing some nice things, and statistically we did some good things and stuff like that. But I felt good that we maybe started to come closer to being a team that could go in there and compete for a playoff spot every year."



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