As originally reported by the Star Ledger, wide receiver Santonio Holmes and Mark Sanchez have been working out in Florida, along with tight end Dustin Keller and wide receiver Patrick Turner. The Jets will begin organized voluntary workouts on April 16th, but Holmes and Sanchez have taken the initiative to begin early.
After the blowup on New Year’s Day, during which offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer’s last act was to bench Holmes for irritating his teammates to near violence with his lack of hustle, this is an encouraging sign. Jets fans have heard everything from star cornerback Darrelle Revis recently saying that the Jet locker room was in disarray to reports that the relationship between Sanchez and Holmes was irreparable.
Sanchez hasn’t spoken much about his relationship with Holmes except to say everyone was frustrated and the drama was overblown, and Holmes hasn’t spoken about the dysfunctional offense at all. While the “feud” between Sanchez and Holmes probably wasn’t as bad as it was made out to be, there’s no doubt that this past season ended on a sour note.
The news that Holmes and Sanchez are looking to salvage their relationship and work on their on-field and off-field chemistry is good, but it’s also necessary. Aside from just wanting to win and reclaim some dignity after last year’s dismal finish, there’s also more practical things to consider…like their paychecks beyond this season.
There’s also the Tim Tebow factor. Supposedly, the source of Holmes’ discontent this past season was the fact that he didn’t get the ball enough. Obviously Sanchez ending up on the bench would be devastating to Sanchez, but it would also probably have a negative impact for Holmes. If he didn’t think he was getting the ball enough when Sanchez was struggling, he’ll probably get the ball less if Tebow takes over as quarterback, judging by what we know of Tebow thus far.
Sanchez and Holmes have a vested interest in sparking their chemistry. Even if they’re not best friends off the field, it’d be beneficial to both to be the best possible team on it.