The Jets checked another item off their to-do list early Monday morning when they agreed to terms on a new contract with free agent cornerback Antonio Cromartie, according to a league source. It’s believed to be a four-year contract, according to a source, and the Daily News reported it is worth $32 million.
After the news broke, Cromartie tweeted “Cro is back” as well as “headed home glad 2 B a Jet. . .let’s go win a Superbowl.”
It was the second significant player move for the Jets in a span of about 16 hours. Early Sunday morning, they signed free agent wide receiver Plaxico Burress to a one-year, $3.017 million deal. The team chose not to re-sign Braylon Edwards, who led the Jets in receptions last season, and signing Burress instead resulted in a savings that helped enable them to re-up Cromartie.
Cromartie played right cornerback for the Jets last season after being acquired from San Diego in a March 2010 trade. He had a solid season, but reports were that he was miffed by the Jets’ very public dalliance last week with free agent Nnamdi Asomugha, who eventually signed with Philadelphia on Friday. But as usual, some money likely helped smooth over the hard feelings.
Cromartie had said in a radio interview last month that there was “no such thing” as a hometown discount, but he also had made it clear he wanted to return. Oakland, which lost Asomugha to free agency, was reported to be the other major suitor. The Jets also had interest in free agent Phillip Buchanon as a fallback option at corner, but wound up not having to go that way.
The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Cromartie has 18 interceptions in his five-year NFL career, including three last season. He played for the Chargers for four seasons before coming to the Jets.