Looking ahead to the end of the season, the Jets have plenty of players who will be out of contract as usual, especially in light of all the one-year deals they signed during free agency.
However, looking down the list, there don't seem to be more than a few players who jump out as being essential re-signs, although some players could establish themselves as such over the next four or five months.
Let's attempt to separate them into groups:
Probably won't make the team anyway
Sam Ficken (ERFA)
Josh Malone (RFA)
Bennett Jackson (RFA)
Bronson Kaufusi (RFA)
Jeff Smith (ERFA)
Jehu Chesson (RFA)
Josh Adams (RFA)
Analysis: Of course it's possible any of these players could actually make the team or, with the added flexibility brought about by this year's special practice squad rules, could factor in later this season. If any player goes onto the practice squad and is later activated, they'll need a new contract anyway, though - which could end up extending beyond the 2020 season.
Probably a minor contributor at best
BJ Bello (RFA)
Frankie Luvu (RFA)
Harvey Langi (ERFA)
Brett Maher (ERFA)
Vyncint Smith (RFA)
Analysis: It's possible some of these could move up a level or two. Players like Maulet, Burgess and Smith had bigger than expected roles last year, while it would seem Harrison and Hairston are on their way out.
Could develop into a key contributor
Analysis: There's a good chance any of these four will get a full starter's workload in 2020 and their future with the Jets could depend upon how they perform. All four are basically reclamation projects and, of the four, Perriman is perhaps the one who has the potential to morph into an essential re-sign and could be a candidate for a midseason extension if he gets off to a good start.
A key contributor you'd probably prefer to upgrade from
Analysis: These three players should start in 2020 but, unless they unexpectedly have a break-out year, they should be positions where the team will be looking to upgrade with young or elite talent. Desir will be 31 on opening day in 2021.
Could leave a hole if not re-signed
Analysis: A lot hinges on Ashtyn Davis here, because if he establishes himself as a potential starter then the Jets may view one or two of these three players as expendable. These are probably the only positions at which there's no obvious replacement for an outgoing free agent.
Kyron Brown (ERFA)
Analysis: Gore and Flacco could be one-and-done and McLendon could be on his way out after the season due to their respective ages. Bellamy and Brown are on the PUP list and don't seem likely to be priorities, although the Jets may see Brown as having enough potential to bring back on an exclusive rights deal.
Who do you think we'll be looking to bring back by next March? Is there anyone on this list who you'd be looking to extend before the end of the league year?