The New York Jets have been dangling Darrelle Revis for nearly a month now, but the team will eventually have to play ball to get a deal done.
Even if they want to keep him.
On Monday, Revis and new Jets general manager John Idzik met for the first time. A source close to Revis said he expected that Idzik would want to hold some cursory talks over a long-term deal, but that's unlikely to move Revis to stay.
The Jets have known for nearly a year that Revis would want around $15-16 million annually, but the team doesn't appear ready to offer him anywhere near that kind of money.
That means the focus will again turn to trading Revis. According to two sources, the Jets will likely need to have an agreement in place by early next week if New York hopes to get a 2013 first-round pick out of the trade.
"Because of the knee injury, this isn't a really simple transaction," one source said. "No matter what the MRI on Revis' knee showed Monday, any team that picks him up is going to want to do its own work and some very thorough work. There's a lot at stake."
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Or as another source said: "This would be almost impossible to pull off on draft day if people are thinking it's going to happen that way."
In all likelihood, the team trading for Revis is going to be Tampa Bay, which appears willing to give up both its first-round pick (No. 13 overall) and pay Revis what he wants, according to multiple sources.
To fully check Revis before signing off on the deal, expect the Buccaneers to want at least a full day.
Revis was examined Monday morning by Dr. Russ Warren at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York. Warren, who is also the New York Giants team doctor, is considered one of the top orthopedic surgeons in the country.
The exam of Revis' repaired anterior cruciate ligament showed that he is progressing ahead of the usual conservative schedule given to athletes. Revis missed 14 games last season with the injury.
That said, the Bucs, or any other team that deals for Revis, are going to want their own evaluation before making such a huge commitment of resources.
"Once you start this transaction, you can't go backward on it, so everything is going to have to be in place," a source said.
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