As panic spreads throughout Patriots Nation with the news that the Patriots have declined Darrelle Revis' $20 million option, there is an explanation for it, and along with that, hope for a new deal. The option was never expected or intended to be picked up, meaning this latest development is going along according to plan.
Patriots not picking up $20 million option in Darrelle Revis' contract; now set to become free agent Tuesday.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 9, 2015
With Devin McCourty being signed yesterday to a five year, $47.5 million dollar deal, the first step was taken towards getting Revis to come back. Despite McCourty's average per year of $9.5 million, his cap hit is merely $6 million, as patscap.com predicted. This will bring the Patriots cap to $10.5 million in available space.
According to @FieldYates, DMC's cap # will be $6M, w/ a signing bonus of $15M.Gets $18M in total in year one. Helps get to cash spending #.
By declining the option, the #Patriots are now $16.5M under the cap according to @ClaytonESPN. That's without the McCourty deal.
— Adam Bogdan (@PatriotsInform) March 9, 2015
The biggest cause for declining the option is so that Revis can be legally tampered with by the Jets. While at first glance this may sound like a bad thing, it will allow Revis to know what they are willing to pay him so that he can feel confident with his decision one way or another.
Darrelle Revis was informed he will not have his $20M option picked up, but two sides will continue to try to negotiate a deal, source said
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 9, 2015
#Patriots will continue to negotiate with Darrelle Revis despite not picking up option. They are NOT done talking. They're still working it.
— Charles Robinson (@CharlesRobinson) March 9, 2015
With the Patriots and Revis remaining in constant contact, here is what I believe will be the course of action going forward. The Jets will talk to Revis and offer him a contract that will likely break some records and drop some jaws. With that number in mind, Revis will return to the Patriots and give them his number based on taking a likely reduced rate in order to play for a winning team. If the Patriots need to clear room, they can cut one or more of the following players: Michael Hoomanawanui, Danny Amendola, Alfonzo Dennard, or Brandon Browner. Other options include extending Nate Solder, or restructuring Kyle Arrington/Amendola.
Revis is far from long gone people. It is far from over. This is just the next step in the process of re-signing him. Things are expected to wrap up tonight, but may push into tomorrow if talks get complicated. Regardless, the Patriots will not easily let Revis walk away, especially to the New York Jets.