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Shame on Jets’ Elijah Moore for his stunning act of selfishness

The Jets apparently can’t have nice things.

Even when they’re winning for the first time in forever, there’s a banana peel in front of them on which to slip and fall.

Elijah Moore, the Jets 22-year-old second-year receiver, leaked news through his agent to the NFL Network on Thursday that he wants to be traded. Moore, who was said to be upset on Thursday, was sent home by head coach Robert Saleh before practice to calm down and spend time with his family, according to a source.

The Jets, according to the source, have no intention of trading Moore.

And why should they? What exactly does Moore think the Jets can get in a trade for a receiver who missed six games in his rookie season to injury and has caught a pedestrian 59 passes for 741 yards and five TDs in his 17 career NFL games?

Moore, who’s a talented receiver with potential, was a second-round pick in 2021. The Jets wouldn’t come within miles of recouping even value trading him now. They’d be lucky to fetch a conditional fifth- or sixth-round pick.

What an unnecessary mess Moore has created for himself and the team with his stunning act of selfishness a mere six games into what has developed into an intriguing feel-good season for the Jets.

And it all began with an innocuous tweet.

Hours after the Jets upset the Packers on Sunday at Lambeau Field, Moore retweeted a reporter’s tweet that noted how curious it was that Moore hadn’t been targeted once in the game.

Elijah Moore
Bill Kostroun

Shortly afterward, Moore responded with a tweet that read: “If I say what I really wanna say…I’ll be the selfish guy…we winning. Grateful! Huge blessing! All I ever wanted. Butter sweet for me em but I’ll be solid. So I’ll just stay quiet. Just know I don’t understand either.’’

Four days later, Moore was sent home from work before delivering his delusional trade demand. Moore has been targeted 29 times this season, which is fifth on the team (third among wide receivers), for 16 catches, 203 yards and no TDs.

Before practice began Thursday, Moore posted some cryptic messages on Twitter, drawing attention to his murky situation.

The first: “God I need direction.’’

The second: “Love my teammates!’’

And then: “God makes no mistakes …I trust you through it Allllll…’’

The first and third of those tweets were quickly deleted.

Saleh, asked Monday about Moore’s postgame tweets, said he’s spoken to Moore and added, “He’s fine. He’s a competitive young man. He wants to contribute. I’ve got no problem with Elijah. He’s one of our high-character individuals.”

That high character trended low on Thursday.

Before Thursday’s practice, Jets offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur did his best to brush off any issues with Moore, saying, “The guys are competitive, they want to contribute as much as possible.’’

After practice, quarterback Zach Wilson indicated that he was aware of Moore’s frustration and was asked how he’s handled it.

“Just keep encouraging him,’’ Wilson said. “We love him. I know how important he is to this team, so we’re going to do everything we can.’’

Then this from Wilson, which was rather telling: “We’re winning games. We’re having a lot of fun. It’s just being patient and trusting the process. I only had 10 completions last week, but we won the game, so it’s awesome.’’

Reading between the lines of Wilson’s words, he made it abundantly clear that the team is winning and that needs to be the main thing. One of Saleh’s oft-used phrases is “keep the main thing the main thing.’’

Well, winning should always be the main thing. And, for a Jets team that’s 4-2 and hasn’t won anything in what seems like forever, Moore whining in public about his lack of targets was a blatant stray from the “main thing.’’

Elijah Moore of the Jets reacts in the second quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Getty Images

Moore allowed himself to get sucked into the social media vortex and he quickly made himself look selfish and small by complaining about his lack of personal stats before the team bus from Lambeau Field even got to the airport following what can only be described as the first true signature victory of the Saleh era.

Saleh, LaFleur, Wilson and everyone else who spoke about Moore on Thursday and glossed it over in public as no big deal surely are chaffed by his behavior. And they should be. Saleh preaches selflessness. Moore has come off as selfish.

Moore had a good thing going and turned an innocuous tweet into a raging brushfire that could burn his Jets career to ashes. Shame on him and his advisors for their stunning lack of vision.

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