In the wake of David Garrard's retirement due to injury issues and Mike Goodson's arrest, there have been a few peoplesuggesting doubt has been cast on John Idzik's judgment. To be sure it was less than a banner week for the two signings. To take too much away from this week, though, seems like a real stretch. In the big picture, it does not seem fair to draw conclusions about Idzik based on what has happened.
Garrard and Goodson were both low risk signings. Idzik knew this at the time he inked them. They were both given small money for the reason they were both risky on some level. Their contracts were structured in a way the Jets could walk away from either at any time. That was the trade off. If Idzik was honest, he would have admitted these were not slam dunk moves. That was the point of not committing a lot of money. Garrard has a track record as a game manager, and Goodson flashed potential while sitting behind some very talented runners. The hope was they could provide value in 2013 and beyond, but there were no guarantees.
Almost every team makes small, under the radar signings like these. They usually fly under the radar. The Jets just had such little cap space this year that these minor moves were some of their major free agent signings. Idzik had little money and had to fill out a big chunk of his roster. That meant taking a shot on some upside guys knowing well it was unlikely every single move would pan out. That is the nature of these under the radar signings. You make some. You hope they will pan out. The good teams are the ones who find a few who do, but a lot do not work out even for the good teams.
It is also worth noting how premature it is to declare Goodson a flop at this point. We hardly know any facts about his situation. This thing might not prevent him from getting on the field at all.
I don't really agree with some of the high praise Idzik has gotten so far. The evidence is inconclusive at best that he has ended the culture of leaks with the Jets. He probably has not drafted this team six quality starters. We are far too early into his tenure to make any definitive judgments. That cuts both ways. Questioning Idzik for Garrard and Goodson feels like reaching. Saying these signings cast question on how well he evaluates players seems akin to using the Matt Chatham and Andre Wadsworth signings to suggest Mike Tannenbaum couldn't evaluate players. When Idzik's run is judged, these moves will probably not be major factors.