NEW YORK (Feb. 28, 2007) -- The New York Jets released running back Derrick Blaylock and defensive end Bobby Hamilton, a person familiar with the moves told The Associated Press.
The moves came two days before the NFL's free agency period was set to begin. The source spoke on condition of anonymity because the team hadn't yet announced the moves.
Michael L. Huyghue, Blaylock's agent, said the veteran running back could still return to the Jets during the offseason.
"They did indicate that if things don't work out with another team that they would be interested in re-signing him," Huyghue told the AP.
Blaylock, who signed with the Jets as a free agent before the 2005 season to back up Curtis Martin, was rarely used last year. After starting the first two games for New York and gaining 44 yards on 25 carries, Blaylock was active for only two other games.
He was injured for most of his first season with the Jets, missing nine games with a broken right foot.
The 27-year-old Blaylock spent his first four NFL seasons with Kansas City, primarily as a backup to Priest Holmes. He has 820 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns in his career.
The Jets released veteran Kevan Barlow on Feb. 21 after the least productive season of his career. He ran for a career-low 370 yards -- third on the team -- and gained 2.8 yards per carry.
With Barlow and Blaylock gone, and Martin all but retired because of a knee injury, the Jets have only two running backs on their roster: playmaking Leon Washington and bulldozing Cedric Houston.
It's uncertain whether the Jets think either could be primary ballcarriers; coach Eric Mangini used a rotation of backs throughout last season. New York has been rumored to be interested in San Diego backup Michael Turner, and could add another back through the draft or free agency.
The 35-year-old Hamilton signed with the Jets before the season, largely because he was familiar with Mangini and the 3-4 defensive system the coach installed. Hamilton had 30 tackles and a fumble recovery last season in his second stint with New York.
He played his first two seasons with Seattle, followed by four years with the Jets. He then helped New England win two Super Bowls from 2000-03 before playing the next two seasons with Oakland.
The Associated Press News Service
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