NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Bryan Thomas is back with the Jets – and he wants to finish his career with his original team.
The outside linebacker was re-signed Monday, along with wide receiver Patrick Turner, two days after the Jets surprisingly cut their longest-tenured player.
Thomas was told Saturday by general manager Mike Tannenbaum and coach Rex Ryan that the Jets had to make a roster move “for the better of the team” but promised to bring him back before elevating cornerback Donnie Fletcher from the practice squad in time for New York’s game at Miami on Sunday.
“You never know how this business works,” Thomas said Monday in the Jets’ locker room. “You see transactions and different things every day. They did tell me that I would be back, but I didn’t know.”
It was a decision that didn’t sit well at first with Thomas, who was the team’s first-round pick in 2002 out of UAB.
“I was (ticked off),” Thomas said. “There’s no other word about it. Just (ticked off). Mad. That’s all I could say about it.”
The Jets also cut Fletcher, defensive lineman Marcus Dixon and offensive tackle Dennis Landolt. They have one open roster spot remaining, but will have another when they likely place cornerback Darrelle Revis on injured reserve because of a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.
Thomas has been a key part of the Jets’ defense, mostly as a solid run-stuffing linebacker. It took him a few days to get over being cut for the first time in his career.
“I can’t hold any animosity,” Thomas said. “This is where I always wanted to be and this is where I want to stay. I want to retire as a Jet and that’s my focus.”
He missed most of last season with a torn left Achilles tendon, but was re-signed to a one-year contract in March. Thomas has been dealing with a hamstring injury the last two weeks, and was listed as doubtful. He knew he wouldn’t be traveling with the team to Miami – but still was bothered by the move.
“You’ve got to look at it as a business, you know?” Thomas said. “I’m an adult. I’ve got to go with it, move on and now get ready for San Francisco.”
Thomas said his hamstring is fine and “everything else is working and lubricated good,” so he should be available against the 49ers this Sunday.
Turner, a former college teammate of quarterback Mark Sanchez at Southern California, was waived on Sept. 11. He has 10 career catches and will add depth to the position with rookie Stephen Hill’s status uncertain because of a hamstring injury sustained in the 23-20 overtime win over the Dolphins on Sunday.
Dixon, who was in his third season with the Jets, was waived on Sept. 1 but re-signed a few days later. His locker remained intact during media availability Monday, so another return is a possibility.
Landolt, in his second stint with the Jets, has been sidelined since training camp with a knee injury.
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