As it turns out, L.T. could be returning to the Meadowlands.
Not the original L.T., who played for the Giants. The new L.T., the nine-year veteran tailback and 2006 NFL MVP who is perched at eighth place on the all-time rushing list.
Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that Tomlinson is scheduled to visit the Jets on Friday, if no deal is consummated in Minnesota. L.T. was last seen leaving Minnesota with a Vikings jersey.
But if the Jets weren’t willing to pay Thomas Jones $5.8 million for 2010, they likely won’t cough up big money for L.T. (It’s also possible that the Jets had a chance to pay Jones the same two-year, $5 million package he received from the Chiefs; if they opted not to do so, it’s unlikely that they would make a similar offer to Tomlinson.) Have to love the Jets.
Apart from the money, Tomlinson wouldn’t be overshadowed by any of the team’s other running backs in New York, and he possibly could set himself up to make a bunch of extra cash in the many off-field opportunities that the Big Apple presents. Think about L.T.’s face all over Times Square? Will it still be Revis Island or LaDainian Square? Also, the Jets climbed as far as the Vikings did in 2009 — and there’s every reason to believe they’ll be right in the thick of things in 2010.
And if playing the Chargers is a factor, it’s a wash in either city; both the Jets and the Vikings are next scheduled to play San Diego in 2011. (Of course, either or both teams could play the Chargers in the 2010 postseason.)
Either way, the Vikings have gotten the first crack at signing L.T. — and the key factors remain price tag and buy-in by L.T. regarding his second-fiddle role to Adrian Peterson.