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Jets' Interest in Chris Ivory Heats Up as RFA Deadline Approaches

After Chris Ivory visited the New York Jets on Friday, reports have surfaced that the team is very interested in acquiring his services.

Could Chris Ivory soon be slipping from the Saints grasp?
Could Chris Ivory soon be slipping from the Saints grasp?
Chris Graythen

As next Friday's April 19 final deadline for restricted free agents to negotiate with other teams looms ever closer, it appears that the New York Jets are the lone suitor attempting to woo Saints restricted free agent running back Chris Ivory.

CSC Shoutout to Satch for bringing this to us much earlier today in a Fanshot (remember those?).

Larry Holder of the reported this morning that TUSK! visited with the team on Friday.

Running back Chris Ivory remains the only unsigned restricted free agent for the New Orleans Saints, and the reason is that he's testing his options. The bruising tailback visited with the New York Jets on Friday, according to a source.

On the heels of this report, Rich Cimini (who writes for the said that he knows some league guys who say the Jets would be very interested in trading for Ivory.

The New York Jets are interested in trading for New Orleans Saints running back Chris Ivory, a restricted free agent who visited Friday with the Jets, league sources confirmed.

Hoo-boy!!! I can see visions of a second-rounder dancing in many CSCers' heads, but we'd better temper that optimism with some caution...

The Jets have no intention of surrendering their second-round pick for a player who rushed for only 217 yards last season, but they're willing to part with a late-round pick. The Saints are interested in trading Ivory, according to a source.

So, what will that mean for the Saints?

Stu found this from Rotoworld (and posted it in Satch's Fanshot) and it seems pretty reasonable to me:

Ideally, Ivory would sign his one-year restricted tender and the Jets would acquire him via trade, probably for a fifth- or sixth-round pick. Although Ivory has major durability red flags, the 25-year-old is one of the most physically gifted power runners in the game.

GM Mickey Loomis likely now realizes Ivory is headed for unrestricted free agency in 2014 and the Saints' best chance of receiving draft-pick compensation for him is now. ESPN New York's Rich Cimini suspects New Orleans would part with Ivory in exchange for a fourth-round pick.

Smells like slightly better than "Reggie-Bush-ja vu" level compensation all over again, if we're lucky.

But hold on there sports fans, let me leave you with just a bit more rampant speculation before we close - Pro Football Focus thinks some other teams should be reaching out to the Saints for TUSK!, too:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p><a href="">#FreeIvory</a> MT @<a href="">nfldraftscout</a>: If I'm the <a href="">#Jets</a>, <a href="">#Steelers</a> or <a href="">#Packers</a>, I'm calling the <a href="">#Saints</a> about Chris Ivory. Big, strong back</p>&mdash; Pro Football Focus (@PFF) <a href="">April 13, 2013</a></blockquote>

So maybe that means we'll see a bit of a TUSK! feeding frenzy once he's signed his tender...that would be kinda fun, wouldn't it?

GO, Payloo GO!!!