By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston

BOSTON (CBS) — It’s not every day that a Hall of Fame cornerback jumps ship from the Patriots to the Jets. It’s actually about once per decade.

These days, Darrelle Revis has dominated the headlines around the NFL world, after he chose to ditch New England after one Super Bowl-winning season in favor of returning “home” to Florham Park, New Jersey. (The fine folks of Aliquippa, Pa., would like a word, Darrelle.)

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But it was just about 10 years ago when another No. 24 from Aliquippa made that same move down I-95, albeit under very different circumstances.

That player, of course, was Ty Law. Though Law had spent 10 seasons establishing himself as the greatest cornerback in Patriots franchise history, the Patriots spent the 2004 season moving on from Law. He suffered a foot injury in the middle of the season, playing sparingly in a Week 8 loss in Pittsburgh and never seeing the field for the rest of the year. They won the Super Bowl with Asante Samuel and Randall Gay starting at the corner spots, and they decided that Law’s $12.5 salary for 2005 was a bit too expensive.

Law, 31 years old at the time, had no interest in restructuring his deal, so the Patriots released him. In early August, in swooped the Jets, who hooked Law with an incentive-laden deal that had a maximum value of $50 million over seven years, giving him the opportunity to earn $28.5 million in the first three years.

Ten years later, it was a contract not all that dissimilar to Law’s that ended the brief run of Revis in New England.

Of course, the situations are starkly different. Law was an all-time great Patriot, whereas Revis is an all-time Jet who just happened to take a two-year reprieve to rehab in Tampa and win a title in New England. Law’s decision to sign with the division rival was much more shocking than Revis’ choice to return “home,” but the fact that they played the same position, wore the same number and are from the same hometown creates an interesting parallel.

In current day Patriotsville, nobody really knows what will come next. There is a sense of panic that the Patriots are heading back to the days when the secondary was a glaring weakness, when “bend-but-don’t-break” was uttered by TV commentators more often than “Julian Edelman played quarterback in college,” and when the Patriots annually came up just shy of making and/or winning Super Bowls.

Though the Internet today is used quite differently than it was in August 2005 (for better and for worse), it’s still possible to dig up some reaction following Law’s surprise signing with the Jets.

”We expected that Ty would be playing football this year,” Bill Belichick said at the time. “If it’s with the Jets, then it’s with the Jets. It’s not really in our control. I have a lot of respect for what he’s done here in his career here.”

For his own part, Law expressed confidence in himself.

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“I’m going to prove to all the doubters, if there are any out there, that I’m still the best cornerback in football,” he said.

The Boston Globe’s Adam Kilgore quoted a doctor who had worked on baseball player John Olerud’s injury, which was the same as Law’s, as saying it “would be debilitating for an NFL player, particularly one who plays cornerback. The injury is particularly harmful if not diagnosed correctly and expeditiously, the doctor said. That could be bad news for Law.”

Dan Martin wrote in the New York Post: “The Jets hope the huge investment will result in an anchor for the secondary, with Law bringing a wealth of experience and three Super Bowl rings.”

The New York Daily News’ Rich Cimini was rather optimistic: “On the morning of Aug. 8, the Jets’ Grinch woke up and discovered a new toy under his tree – a four-time Pro Bowl cornerback with three Super Bowl rings. ‘It’s Christmas,’ proclaimed grouchy defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson, who didn’t seem so grouchy anymore. … For a team that harbored Super Bowl aspirations even before Aug. 8, the Law signing reinforced the positive vibes that permeated the organization.”

The Patriots went 10-6 in 2005, beating the Jaguars on wild-card weekend but losing the first playoff game of the Brady-Belichick era in a divisional round visit to Denver.

The Jets? Well, the Jets went 4-12 that year. They lost at New England by 13 points, and they lost in the Meadowlands to the Patriots by 10 points, though Law did intercept Brady and return it 74 yards for a touchdown on that December day. Law had a wonderful season in terms of statistics, as he made a career-high 10 interceptions, but it didn’t do much to help the Jets. (Three of those picks came in a Week 17 win over quarterback Kelly Holcomb and the Bills. Brooks Bollinger played QB for the Jets and threw for 145 yards on 11-of-20 passing. The Jets gained 207 total yards and won 30-26. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more disgusting football game.) (Only two of Law’s seven other interceptions came in victories.)

After that failed season, the Jets traded head coach Herm Edwards to the Chiefs and then released Law a month later. Edwards liked what he saw out of Law so much that he signed him to another big-money contract, this one a five-year, $30 million deal.

That ended Law’s involvement in the Pats-Jets rivalry … or so we thought. Law ended up re-signing with the Jets in the middle of the 2008 season, just in time for a Thursday night showdown in Foxboro with first place on the line. That night at Gillette, Law shared a defensive backfield with … second-year cornerback Darrelle Revis.

Time, at least as it relates to all-time talents who play cornerback and wear No. 24 in New England, is a flat circle.

Darrelle Revis and Ty Law (Photos by Al Bello/Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Darrelle Revis and Ty Law (Photos by Al Bello/Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

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Read more from Michael Hurley by clicking here. You can email him or find him on Twitter @michaelFhurley.