Adam Schefter with the scoop:
Jets expected to release Mo Wilkerson today, per league source. Another veteran hits the market.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 28, 2018
This move is now official:
We have released DL Muhammad Wilkerson. pic.twitter.com/NhLfoREpLK— New York Jets (@nyjets) February 28, 2018
The writing has been on the wall for some time with this move and it leaves a big hole in the Jets' front seven, in more ways than one.
Wilkerson signed a blockbuster deal prior to the start of the 2016 season, despite the fact he was coming off a broken leg.
He struggled in 2016, which was attributed to complications in his recovery from that injury and more injury problems surfaced in 2017 as he suffered a sprained shoulder and a broken toe, which prevented him from practicing over the first half of the season. As the injuries cleared up, Wilkerson looked more like his old self in the second half, only to then find himself benched and eventually de-activated for off-the-field insubordination.
It's those issues - principally lateness but also a surly attitude behind the scenes - that have led to the Jets opting to part ways with their highest-paid player. The Jets save approximately $11 million in cap space, bringing their projected cap room over the $90 million mark.
Defensive tackle now becomes one of the Jets' key needs on defense and the Jets will be hoping that underwhelming 2017 seasons from the likes of Leonard Willams and Darron Lee won't be repeated without Wilkerson in the line-up.
We'll be watching with interest to see what kind of contract Wilkerson gets on the open market and how he fares with his next team.