Jets sign Ray/cut Beasley/Szott retires

The Jets expected busy off-season is underway. The team made three moves on Friday.

Dave Szott announced his retirement. This move was somewhat surprising because late in the year, Szott's wife and a family friend confronted a writer who wrote that the guard would likely retire. They stated adamantly that Szott had no intention of retiring. However, this exchange was before New England's Ted Washington fell on Szott's knee in Game 15. This right knee injury, combined with a serious left knee injury suffered the year before, led to Szott's announcement today.

Also announced on Friday was the release of cornerback Aaron Beasley. This was expected. Beasley had a inconsistent season and the Jets are looking to get faster in the secondary. His high salary also contributed to his release.

The Jets also signed CFL quarterback Ricky Ray. With the likely retirement of Vinny Testaverde, the Jets wanted to add a quarterback to compete with Brooks Bollinger for the backup job behind Chad Pennington. Ray is coming off a brilliant season in leading the Edmonton Eskimos to the 2003 Grey Cup Championship. He threw for 35 touchdowns and just 13 interceptions and finished with a 108.1 quarterback rating. He spent the last two seasons in the CFL after brief stints in the Arena League and with the San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers signed him as an undrafted free agent out of Sacramento State.

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