HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (Aug. 8, 2005) -- Ty Law agreed to a contract with Jets, giving New York a Pro Bowl cornerback who helped the New England Patriots win three Super Bowls.
The deal for the free agent was contingent on a physical, scheduled for the afternoon at the team's training camp.
"And if everything goes well, he'll be a New York Jet," coach Herman Edwards said.
Law will give the Jets a shut-down defensive back who will start at left cornerback, which was vacated when Donnie Abraham retired shortly before training camp.
"He's an excellent player and helps us get better," said Edwards, who met with Law the night of Aug. 7.
The 31-year-old Law was in the final season of a seven-year contract with the Patriots, and was due a sum this season that would have taken a big hit on New England's salary cap. Law reportedly wasn't willing to restructure his contract, so New England released him in February. He was sought by a number of teams, including Detroit, Kansas City and Pittsburgh.
"The thing he brings to the table is he has great instincts," Edwards said. "He understands angles very, very well and he's a physical guy, too. He has great hand-eye coordination and he's a student -- he studies the game, studies receivers."
To make room for Law, the Jets released Ray Mickens, who had been listed as a starting cornerback during the first week of camp. The team also let go of safety Derek Pagel, guard Dave Yovanovits, running back Delvin Joyce and cornerback Roosevelt Williams.
Law missed the Patriots' third championship with a broken foot. The 10-year veteran needed surgery in January to repair ligament damage after a season-ending fracture during an October loss in Pittsburgh that ended New England's record 21-game winning streak.
Law has four Pro Bowl appearances and holds Patriots records with 36 interceptions and six regular-season touchdowns on interceptions. He also scored on an interception when New England beat St. Louis in February 2002 for its first NFL title.
"He's a competitor," Edwards said. "He wants to play the best guy every week."
Mickens, who played nine seasons for the Jets and was a fan favorite, missed last year with a torn knee ligament but looked good in camp. He started 14 games in 2003 when Abraham was injured and had been a key part of the Jets' nickel package.
"Ray will be somewhere else," Edwards said. "He's a good player and he'll play in this league with another team. It's tough when you have to let go of a player when you know you'd like to keep him."
Second-year cornerback Derrick Strait will step into Mickens' spot as the main nickel back.
Pagel, a fifth-round pick in 2003, played in 19 games in two seasons with the Jets, mostly on special teams. Yovanovits, a seventh-round pick in 2003, appeared in four games in two seasons.
Joyce was signed by the Jets in April after playing two seasons with the Giants. Williams joined New York on Aug. 2 after being released by Washington.
The Associated Press News Service
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