Jets In Alternate States

The New York Jets appear to be generating hostility in New Jersey as the NFL team decides where it wants to play.

Jets officials have been in discussions with the New York Giants to continue to play at East Rutherford, N.J.’s Giants Stadium, but talk of building its own venue in Queens, N.Y., has ticked off Jersey officials.

The Jets recently saw a monumental stadium project fall through in New York City, where Mayor Michael Bloomberg pushed to build a $2.3 billion facility that would double as the Jets’ home field and an Olympic stadium if NYC won the 2012 Summer Games.

When the controversial project crashed and burned, officials in New Jersey forcefully persuaded the Giants to accommodate the Jets as a full partner in a new stadium at the Meadowlands complex, according to The New York Times.

With a deadline looming on the agreement, the Jets told the NFL they were going to look into a $1.35 billion stadium in Queens, in a presumed effort to start a bidding war between the two states. New Jersey officials were reportedly infuriated by the announcement, and it’s anyone’s guess if the Jets have burned that bridge.

“(Jets President) Jay Cross flat-out told us after the West Side stadium fell through that he was intent on bringing the Jets to a stadium in New Jersey, with the Giants as full partners,” Paul Fader, general counsel to acting Gov. Richard Codey, told the Times. “He was not at all interested in Queens. It would appear that he was less than completely truthful with us. It would appear he now wants to go to Queens.”

Prior to the announcement, New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority prexy Carl Goldberg confidently told reporters the Jets were focused on having a home in New Jersey, the paper said.

A Jets vice president responded that the team has said all along that it would explore all of its options.

A return to NYC might be problematic for the Jets, as the Times pointed out. Bloomberg’s vocal support of the Jets/Olympic stadium was unpopular, and his ratings climbed after the project was killed. This time, the mayor’s office is quiet about a home in Queens.

“We’re aware of the interest, but they haven’t made a proposal to the city, so we are unable to comment,” a Bloomberg spokesman told the paper.