Strange doings at wide receiver

Thoughts and observations on the wide-receiver craziness:

• The Jets let a very good No. 2 receiver, Braylon Edwards, walk away. They replaced him with Plaxico Burress, who spent two years in jail. That's a downgrade. They paid $3 million for Burress, only $500,000 less than Edwards received Thursday from the 49ers on a one-year deal. So the obvious question is, why didn't the Jets simply cough up a little more for Edwards?

There was absolutely no way Edwards was going to play on the Jets for $3.5 million, sources told me. Edwards always felt he was better than Santonio Holmes (five years, $50 million) and he wasn't going to swallow that much pride and play for less than half of Holmes' annual average.

Jerricho Cotchery never said anything publicly because he's too classy to complain -- he's the anti-diva -- but he was unhappy that the organization kept picking up players and putting them ahead of him on the depth chart -- i.e. Holmes and Burress. The organization has an immense amount of respect for Cotchery, but it doesn't see him as a starting receiver.

Time will tell. Cotchery is only 29 and, assuming his surgically repaired back is healed, he's going to have more productive years in the league. Don't be surprised if he ends up with the Chargers, where he'd be reunited with his old college QB, Philip Rivers. Cotchery is going to be around longer than Burress. And know this: Cotchery never missed the first day of practice because of a "tweaked" ankle.

• The Jets are trying to sign former Raven Derrick Mason, who would be a good, one-year replacement for Cotchery, but this isn't the slam dunk a lot of people thought. Two other teams are in the bidding, according to a source. If the Jets lose Mason, they're going to be hurting. Rookie Jeremy Kerley has impressed in practice, but do you really want to throw a fifth-round pick into the No. 3 role?