Jets set to meet with free agent running back Dalvin Cook this weekend
Dalvin Cook is heading to New York to meet with the new-look Jets this weekend.
The free agent running back, who turns 28 next month, could join a revamped Jets offense led by quarterback Aaron Rodgers and coordinator Nathaniel Hackett.
“We’ll never say no to a great player,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said Thursday. “If the opportunity presents itself in the right way. So we’re excited about him and his visit. It’s really just being able to get have a conversation, get hands on him.”
The former Minnesota Vikings star had offseason surgery in February on his shoulder, an ailment he has played through the past few seasons.
“I know he’s got some things that medically that would have to check out and all that stuff,” Saleh said. “But again, excited about his visit and a chance to sit down and talk with him.”
Saleh didn’t say when the meeting would occur, but a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press it would happen this weekend. The person spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity because the team hadn’t announced Cook’s visit. NFL Network first reported Cook would fly into the New York area Thursday and then meet with the Jets over the weekend.
Cook posted a video on “X”, formerly known as Twitter, of him running for a 53-yard touchdown against Miami, along with the comment: “Heading to the airport like...”
Cook’s visit comes after Rodgers agreed to a reworked two-year, $75 million guaranteed contract with the Jets, according to the person familiar with the deal.
The four-time NFL MVP had nearly $110 million in guaranteed money remaining on his previous deal signed with Green Bay. But Rodgers is taking less money with New York in a move that appears to also reiterate his stay with the Jets is likely to last beyond just this season.
And now New York could be adding another playmaker for Rodgers.
Cook has run for at least 1,000 yards in each of the past four seasons, but was released by the Vikings on June 8 for salary cap savings, according to another person familiar with Minnesota’s decision.
“He’s dynamic,” Saleh said. “He’s a dynamic ball carrier. He’s been a dynamic ball carrier for a long time. He’s great in the passing game. And so it’s just a matter of, like I said, all the details of that. I’m not going to get too detailed, but you can’t say no to a good football player. They usually find a way.”
Cook, who’s third on Minnesota’s career rushing list with 5,993 yards after six years with the Vikings, could give New York some insurance in the backfield with Breece Hall working his way back from a knee injury that cut short a promising rookie season.
Saleh insisted the Jets’ interest in Cook has nothing to do with Hall being on the physically unable to perform list and potentially not ready to practice as soon as the team expected.
“Breece looks fantastic, to the point where we’ve got to slow him down,” Saleh said. “He’s freakish. He’s in great shape.”
The Jets also have Michael Carter, Zonovan Knight, Damarea Crockett, fifth-round draft pick Israel Abanikanda and undrafted free agent Travis Dye at the position.
Rodgers, who is taking over for the disappointing Zach Wilson, will have Garrett Wilson, last season’s AP Offensive Rookie of the Year, Corey Davis, Mecole Hardman and former Packers teammates Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb at wide receiver, and C.J. Uzomah and Tyler Conklin at tight end.
Cook, a second-round pick out of Florida State in 2017, has run for 47 touchdowns and also has 221 receptions for 1,794 yards and five scores out of the backfield. He has also made the Pro Bowl four straight years and started every game last season, a first for him in the pros — although his 4.4 yards per rush were a career low.
NOTES: WR Garrett Wilson left practice to have an ankle injury examined, but Saleh said “all indications are that he’ll be OK.” ... Davis sat out with what Saleh said was an illness. ... Uzomah practiced for the first time after coming off the physically unable to perform list Wednesday. ... Saleh on Rodgers agreeing to a reworked two-year, $75 million contract with which he will take a pay cut from his original deal signed in Green Bay: “For him to take a shot on us, I think it speaks volumes and we’re grateful for that.”