Not that Thursday night’s New York-New England clash needed any extra juice, but it just got some.
Free-agent cornerback Ty Law reached agreement Monday with the Jets on a one-year deal, and is expected to play Thursday night against the Patriots.
“This is going to be different playing Thursday night against the Patriots, matching up against my former team and the players I’m used to practicing against,” Law said as he was packing in Boston to drive to New York only to return to Boston again on Wednesday.
“I know they’re going to throw at me, but I welcome the challenge.”
It is the latest chapter in the border war between New York and New England. Those were the two teams that continued to pursue Law throughout the off-season. The Patriots remained in contract with Law up until Monday, and the Saints weighed in to see if they could lure Law to New Orleans. But Law opted Monday to play with New York, where his first game back with the Jets will be against the Patriots.
“I just feel better about this and the direction this team is going and how they welcomed me,” said Law, who spent the 2005 season with the Jets. “I wanted to be somewhere I wanted.”
Law definitely is wanted in New York, where he will be a teammate of Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis, who grew up in the same town as Law — Aliquippa, Pennsylvania — and Revis viewed him as a mentor.
“That’s my little boy,” said the 34-year-old Law. “I’ve watched him grow up and to be able to help him now, it’ll be a good deal. He’s wearing No. 24, and he’s representing me. He’s a stud, and it’s going to be more of a pleasure to watch him grow.”
Law, who will wear No. 22 for the Jets, also will have the chance to grow. The Jets told him they will use him at cornerback, but also experiment some with him at safety. It is something Law has watched some of the game’s great defensive backs do, and he is anxious to be on the field, despite missing all of camp and the first nine weeks of the NFL season.
“The Jets are going to move me around, make me a corner-slash-safety, a corner hybrid,” Law said. “A lot of guys move back inside and play. Eric (Mangini, the Jets head coach) will do some creative things with me and I’ll get to mentor Darrelle.”