This just in: When the Jets say they aren’t going to do something, what they actually mean is that they will.
As was first reported by ESPN, the Jets have traded recently demoted RT Wayne Hunter to the St.Louis Rams in exchange for former first-round pick OT Jason Smith.
Both teams have confirmed the trade and both players will take physicals tomorrow.
Hunter was benched last week in favor of Austin Howard, who performed well in last night’s preseason game vs. the Carolina Panthers. According to Rich Cimini, ”the Jets wanted to fortify the weakest spot on their offensive line,” adding that the Jets plan to use Smith as a backup.
Austin Howard will remain the starting right tackle.
Demotions are something Hunter and Smith share — Smith, the Rams second overall pick in 2009, also recently lost his starting job to Barry Richardson after concussions and poor play kept him off the field.
For those curious about how this move effects the cap, Hunter was owed $2.45 million guaranteed salary from the Jets this year. Smith is fully guaranteed for $4 million, so the Jets actually lose cap space with this move.
Outside of the $1.5 million dollar cap hit the Jets will take, the trade is basically considered to be “even.” However, Hunter, whom Rex Ryan recently called “the best back-up offensive lineman in football” needed a change of scenery after a tough offseason. Perhaps a change of scenery will also benefit Smith.
Meanwhile, Brian Schottenheimer is collecting old Jets, including Matthew Mulligan, Robert Turner, Michael Campbell, Kellen Clemens and draft “bust” Vernon Ghloston.
- Nick Folk has won the kicker job. Josh Brown broke the news via his Twitter this morning.
- The Jets have completed the first round of roster cuts, leaving the roster at 74.