As previously noted, we welcome reader contributions here at JetsFix.com. To that end, regular contributor Sunset Boulevard opted to share his idea of a realistic offseason plan for the Jets. Feel free to pick this apart in the comments.
Congratulations! If you have read this far, this article has already been added to your monthly Jetsfix bill. As this is the case, you are actually losing money by not continuing to read my article, so use your head and enjoy this now complementary article.
I reached out to JetsFix about the possibility of writing a guest article and they informed me that this could be whatever I want, provided there were no grammatical or factual errors and no offensive content. So, if you #*@$% doesn’t liek my proposal to trade the latter of our sixth round picks for Aaron Donald, you can *$@$ right off. I could of cared less.
My intention here is to present a reasonable mock offseason based in part of what I think Joe Douglas and puppet master Adam Gase will do and what I think would be instrumental in the perpetual task of creating a Jets team that can be in contention. I welcome any criticism but remember that I wield the all mighty downvote and if you disagree with me, we are not friends anymore and I hate you. Without further ado:
Areas to address in order of concern
Tags and tenders
The New York SunJets place the transition tag on Robby Anderson (1 year ~ $16 million)
Due to our incredibly barren wide receiver core, Robby Anderson has way more leverage over us than he should. Furthermore, the market of equivalent receivers or better begins and ends with Amari Cooper. Not ideal. We will give Robby the transition tag to keep him in house and continue to negotiate for another year. If he can prove that he can jive with Sam and be a productive upper echelon receiver, we can work something out long term. If he cannot, we will have a less desperate situation at wide receiver next year with a rookie or free agent in tow. If a team like the Raiders offers him a contract exceeding $16 million a year, we were never going to keep him anyway. Its steep, but it’s the price to pay to ensure its not a foolish investment.
Trumaine Johnson (~ 3 million)
Avery Williamson (~6.5 million)
Quincy Enunwa (~2.4 million)
Brian Winters (~7.5 million)
Darryl Roberts (~6 million)
Josh Bellamy (~2.2 million)
Blake Countess (~1.2 million)
Mathias Farley (~1.2 million)
Most of these cuts are obvious and require no further explanation. The mechanism to replace Avery Williamson’s production is already in place for a fraction of the cost. Brian Winters is ass but we can revisit him if the market isn’t fruitful. However I’m perfectly happy rolling with replacement level guards who don’t take up 7.5 million in cap space. I don’t think Quincy Enunwa can or should play another snap for us but I assume he receives some sort of retirement pay out. For now, I’ll treat him as a cut. Jonotthan Harrison is a notable omission; we’ll retain him because the market and draft class for centers are thin.
Cap Space: ~63 million
(Ed. Note: Sunset asked us for help with the salary cap numbers in this article. This seems close enough: $49m plus $5m to carry over plus $24m from the cuts noted above give us about $78m if we ignore the effect of the rule of 51, then knock off the $15-16m to Anderson).
Brian Poole (4 years ~48 million)
Kelvin Beachum (3 years ~30 million)
Alex Lewis (3 years ~8 million)
Tom Compton (1 year ~2 million)
Lachlan Edwards (2 years ~5 million)
Maurice Canady (2 years ~5 million)
Following the same logic as the Avery Williamson cut, I don’t think we need to bring Hewitt back. He’s not a major upgrade over Blake Cashman or James Burgess. Jordan Jenkins is a useful player but not the type I want to give a second contract to retain. Adams is not getting a new contract two years away from his current one ending. We’ll talk when I make my mock offseason next year.
Cap Space: ~40 million
(Ed. Note: Using only $23m of current year cap room to make these six signings is a bit of a stretch but not impossible. You'd most likely need to backload some of the hits on Poole and Beachum's deals. The bigger issue here may be that Lewis is underpriced. Also, James Burgess is a restricted free agent, but let's assume they can non-tender him and re-sign him for close to the minimum).
Free Agency Signings
G Joe Thuney (4 years ~60 million)
T Halapoulivaati Vaitai (4 years ~40 million)
EDGE Robert Quinn (3 years ~30 million)
CB Prince Amukamara (3 years ~30 million)
CB Mackensie Alexander (3 years ~10 million)
QB Nate Sudfeld (2 years ~4 million)
WR Tajae Sharpe (1 year ~4 million)
S Eric Berry (1 year ~5 million)
K Aldrick Rosas (1 year ~2 million)
The 2019 Jets played great defense and abysmal offense, and the defense hasn’t changed much. As such, I focused a large part of our efforts into improving the offensive line to have tangible down the line effects for our running and passing game. I went with Vaitai over Conklin because I believe Vaitai can be had for a less exorbitant price and with less competition. While it is likely we end up with an offensive tackle in the draft who is ready to start Day 1, we cannot take the chance of rolling into the season with Edoga starting at RT. Tajae Sharpe will fill out the wide receiver depth chart and provide the size the Jets seemed to value when they traded for Demaryious Thomas last year. Nate Sudfeld will come hold the clipboard for us. Like Vaitai, he has connections to Douglas. I was unable to reel in Glasglow or McGovern, unfortunately.
On the defensive side, I took a few more risks. The costs of the top EDGE’s are prohibitive, so I went with Robert Quinn, who still provides pass rush but gets lost in the weeds for his age. For what he will provide, this is a bargain. Similarly, the New York SunJets were not in the mix for Jones or Bradberry, despite my love for both. Instead, Amukamara will take the CB1 spot and Alexander will be thrown in the mix with Austin, Canady, and Hairston for the second boundary position. Berry is planning on returning to the NFL this year but it is unclear how large his market will be due to injury issues and time off. A one year prove contract is an ideal compromise. He can play limited snaps here and show the NFL he is healthy while we can utilize him in three safety sets or in place of Maye or Adams at times. This is a low ceiling, high upside move. If there is a market for his services by October, we can look to deal him before the deadline.
Cap Space ~11 million
(Ed.Note - Signing these nine players and using up only $29m of cap space is really starting to stretch the bounds of plausibility, but again it can be done in theory. You'd need to have a large signing bonus and a year one minimum for all the top deals to make this work. Or, alternatively, all the one year deals could use an option year to lower the immediate cap hit. Failing that, more space could easily be created via salary-to-bonus restructures for guys like CJ Mosley, Le'Veon Bell or Jamison Crowder)
Using TheDraftNetwork’s Predictive Board, these were the top 10 selections:
(1. Joe Burrow - CIN
(2. Chase Young - WAS
(3. Jeffrey Okudah - DET
(4. Jedrick Wills - NYG
(5. K’Lavon Chaisson - MIA
(6. Justin Herbert - LAC
(7. Tua Tagovailoa- CAR
(8. Derrick Brown - ARI
(9. Isaiah Simmons - JAX
(10. Mekhi Becton – CLE
Here are our picks
11 T Andrew Thomas (Georgia)
Despite our new offensive tackle, the SunJets are still looking into the future. Beachum is on the downside of his career and Vaitai may or may not be a long term fix at tackle. For the coming year, one of the three will have to move inside at guard. Wirfs, Jeudy, Ruggs, and Lamb were all considerations here.
48 C Matt Hennessy (Temple)
Thank you, mock draft gods, for ensuring that we would not be saddled with Harrison starting for another year in my imaginary world. I passed up Reagor for this, so you know how much it matters.
68 CB Damon Arnette (Ohio State)
Gregg gets a physical press corner with upside to supplement our corner room. It doesn’t appear that any of our incumbents have gained his Gregg’s trust so he will have an opportunity to start at the secondary spot.
79 EDGE Alex Highsmith (Charlotte)
The EDGE room receives some depth.
I didn’t intend to take three receivers in this draft but here we are. Combine darling Claypool is a block of clay that we can hopefully mold. Pittman adds size and familiarity with Darnold. Duvernay is an additional jolt of speed at the receiver spot. Next year, when Robby is looking for a long term contract, we can make that decision without having exactly one NFL caliber receiver left on our roster otherwise.
212 CB Dane Jackson (Pitt)
Thanks for the late pick Hairston. Meet the instrument of your demise.
Here is a rough final depth chart:
QB: Sam Darnold, Nate Sudfeld
RB: Le’Veon Bell, Kenneth Dixon, Trenton Cannon
WR: Robby Anderson, Jamison Crowder, Tajae Sharpe, Chase Claypool, Michael Pittman Jr., Devin Duvernay, Josh Doctson
TE: Chris Herndon, Ryan Griffin, Daniel Brown, Trevon Wesco
OT: Kelvin Beachum, Halapoulivaati Vaitai, Andrew Thomas, Chuma Edoga
OG: Joe Thuney, Alex Lewis, Tom Compton
C: Matt Hennessy, Jonotthon Harrison
DL: Quinnen Williams, Henry Anderson, Steve McClendon, Folorunso Fatukasi, Kyle Philips
EDGE: Robert Quinn, Alex Highsmith, Tarrell Basham, Jordan Willis
ILB: CJ Mosley, James Burgess, Blake Cashman
CB: Prince Amukamara, Mackensie Alexander, Brian Poole, Damon Arnette, Blessuan Austin, Maurice Canady, Nate Hairston, Dane Jackson, Arthur Maulet
S: Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye, Eric Berry
P: Lachlan Edwards
K: Aldrick Rosas
KR: Vyncent Smith
PR: Braxton Berrios
One Superbowl, please.