The New York Jets have released wide receiver Stephen Hill, per Mike Garafolo of FOX Sports.
Hill was the team's second round choice in the 2012 NFL Draft. At 6'4, 215 lbs., Hill's size and athleticism set him apart heading into the draft and should have given the Jets a solid red zone target. Instead, Hill never lived up to the hype and was labeled a disappointment from the outset.
As Hill's effort and production have slipped, he's also slipped down the depth chart. Jeremy Kerley and the newly signed Eric Decker are expected to start on the outside. David Nelson, Clyde Gates, and Jalen Saunders are also expected to contribute at wide receiver.
Then again, it wasn't exactly the best situation for Hill. There were significant quarterback issues over his two seasons with the Jets, which his agent, Alan Herman, is quick to point out. He went so far as to say that he is "disappointed" in general manager John Idzik and head coach Rex Ryan with "the way the whole thing went down there." He said that "two years in that kind of situation is disheartening," according to Jim Corbett of USA Today.
"He didn't have a chance that first year with that whole Tim Tebow-Mark Sanchez fiasco," Herman said, "His second year, Geno Smith was learning how to play quarterback." He went on to say that the Jets never threw the ball deep, which was billed as Hill's specialty out of college.
With a questionable attitude and work ethic, Hill's release did not come as a surprise to most fans. Gang Green Nation's David Wyatt expected Hill to stay, but even then he said Hill was on thin ice.
My gut tells me that Hill will get a few more months and one more year. I can't justify that and if he is cut, that would be a surprise to nobody, there is just something that tells me he will get one more chance.
Hill had only 24 catches last year for 342 yards and a single touchdown in 12 total games (11 starts). His agent is hopeful that Hill will catch on somewhere sooner rather than later, floating the Cleveland Browns as a potential candidate to put in a waiver claim, saying that head coach Mike Pettine "knows him and they need receivers and Stephen can stretch the field."