The ball is now in Nick Folk’s court. Make that on his foot.
Jay Feely is now an Arizona Cardinal. The Cards made it official on their team Website this afternoon, saying that Feely agreed to a two-year deal late Thursday night. And Feely, of course, made it official via his Twitter account. Here are some of his tweets this afternoon:
I am officially an Arizona Cardinal!! Very excited to head to the desert with former teammates @kerryrhodes and Joey Porter.
I am truly sad to leave the Jets organization. The relationship I had with the fans was awesome. Thanks for all the support
My Jets teammates and coaches will be truly missed. There are a lot of great guys on that team and that atmosphere is phenomenal.
Feeling I got from the Cardinals organization is that it is filled with the same kind of people and atmosphere as the Jets.
Feely, who came to the Jets after the 2008 season opener, when Mike Nugent got hurt, and kicked almost the entire past two seasons for the Green & White, had said he wanted to remain with the Jets. General manager Mike Tannenbaum said the Jets wanted to keep Feely as well. But when a player leaves a team as an unrestricted free agent, all bets are off. And because it became clear that Feely would test the free agent market early last month, Tannenbaum and the Jets brought in Folk, the free agent formerly with the Cowboys, on Feb. 23.
Folk spoke with Eric Allen during the locker room media availability period Thursday, before word of Feely’s signing was out. About signing with the Jets, Folk said:
“My agent and I were in contact with Mike and Rex for quite a while. I ended up getting a workout right before the combine. It was a Friday and I flew back to Dallas and then we finalized everything on Monday, so it was a good weekend for me.”
One of the highlights of the career of the kicker from, yes, Hollywood, Calif., and the University of Arizona was the Cowboys’ Monday night frosting of the Bills in Buffalo on Oct. 8, 2007, when Folk converted all four FG tries, including the 53-yarder with no time on the clock (twice, since Bills coach Dick Jauron tried to ice him the first time) and executed the onsides kick to set up the winner, in that 25-24 comebacker.
"It was a long time ago," said Folk, who was a rookie en route to the Pro Bowl that season. "It was a good Monday night game for us. We weren’t playing very well and I ended up having to make a couple of field goals at the end there. It was a good night for me."
Folk began his Dallas tenure strongly, hitting 60 of his first 70 field goal tries (85.7 percent), but ended it with a rough stretch, missing seven of his last 11 FG tries before being released following the Cowboys’ 24-17 win at New Orleans last Dec. 19. But he remains confident in his abilities in general and in kicking in the cold that he may well be faced with here. He hit two field goals against Steelers at Pittsburgh on an 8-degree wind-chill day in December 2008, so he’s not fazed by the cold.
He also knows that whatever he experienced at the old Meadowlands stadium is out the window with the New Meadowlands Stadium opening for football business in August.
As for right now, he’s just immersing himself into the Jets’ offseason strength and conditioning program to get ready for a big 2010.
"I’m getting stronger and trying to get back in shape kicking-wise," he said. "I took a little bit of time off there, but now I’m getting back into the flow of things and getting stronger so that I’m ready for the new season.”
Tags: Arizona Cardinals, Dallas Cowboys, Jay Feely, Mike Tannenbaum, Nick Folk
Posted in Randy Lange | 66 Comments »