The New York Jets’ decision to sign Mike Goodson seemed logical 15 months ago, but it has sure gone downhill since then. The running back was signed to a 3-year, $6.9 million contract last offeason, with the idea that he would give the Jets an explosive third down back and return man. However, Goodson was arrested on drug and weapons charges and suspended for the first four games. Goodson then tore his ACL in just his second game with the Jets missing the remainder of the season. He still faces prison time for the drug and weapons arrest, leaving his future very much in doubt.
Making matters worse, Goodson has been doing nothing to help himself lately, skipping all of OTAs (which are technically voluntary) without giving the team a reason. Now, Goodson has failed to appear for the Jets’ three day mandatory minicamp that began today.
This has to be the final straw for Rex Ryan and John Idzik. Goodson’s legal troubles are a significant problem, and many observers believe the Jets should have cut him a long time ago. However, they have given him the chance to work his way onto the roster, but he doesn’t seem interested. Goodson is still rehabbing his knee, but there is no reason he can’t appear at team activities, or at the very least give a reason for not attending.
Goodson is a long shot to make the team, as Chris Ivory, Chris Johnson, and Bilal Powell look likely to have three running back spots locked down. Given that he doesn’t appear to have any value to the Jets on the field, there is simply no reason to keep Goodson around. His legal troubles are a black mark for a team that has gone to great lengths to change their culture and reputation over the last few years, and it is in the Jets’ best interest to simply cut ties with Goodson.
Releasing Goodson would also send the right message to the rest of the locker room by showing that the Jets expect commitment to the team on the field and good behavior off it. Also, releasing Goodson would save the Jets a little more than $2 million against the cap over the next two seasons. The Jets don’t need the cap space, but there’s no sense in continuing to stay tied to Goodson. His signing was clearly a mistake, and his failure to attend mandatory minicamp should be the end of his time in New York.