New York Jets: Mo’ money for Muhammad Wilkerson?


Should the New York Jets give defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson the big money he’s looking for? If the Cleveland game is any indication, the season is going to go a lot smoother for him than his off-season did.  Feeling good about his contributions last season and hoping to wrap up a sweet contract in short order, it would seem a no-brainer.  Everyone wins, right?

The reality is, it just did not happen.  While he is third of what some argue to be the NFL’s best d-line, the Jets seemed to play wait-and-see.  While Mo quietly grumbled,  linemate Sheldon Richardson got hit with a suspension and social media was buzzing that a guy I feel is being underpaid might finally get his due.

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And still, nothing.  Unfortunately, season has started and both sides are at a standstill.

I’ll just say it: What the heck are the Jets thinking?  Are they even thinking at all?  They have a consistent defensive end who is getting his job done.

Wilkerson is one of the best in the NFL, can make game-changing plays and we have not had to deal with any personal drama at all.  Is there something wrong with going with a strong player who just goes out and makes tackles and sacks?

It all boils down to guaranteed money.  Wilkerson’s agent, Chad Wiestling, denies holding out for the J.J. Watt package of $100 million contract (including $52 million in guarantees).  OK, but with other signings recently in the NFL, such as Marcell Dareus $100-million it is no wonder why Wilkerson is not settling.

He knows he is a valuable player and definitely does not deserve to be lowed balled at this stage of his career.  He’s stayed quiet and gone about his business.  Even his agent has chirped in a classy way. Look at his quote taken from an article written by Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports:

“Mo loves being a Jet, and nothing less than a Super Bowl for New York will satisfy him this season. He will play his heart out for this team regardless of his contract situation” Chad Wiestling

Jul 30, 2015; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) answers questions about his contract from the media during first day of training camp at Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

The executives know there is no rush to sign a deal.  I can’t decide if it’s a scheme to motivate Wilkerson to play hungry, or really just a way to give the Jets time to review what they currently have.  Richardson’s off season antics allow them to evaluate the other members of the line, and thank goodness Leonard Williams is stepping up despite his lack of experience.

Ultimately, this gives Wilkerson (and Damon Harrison, who is also on a contract year) the opportunity to show their worth, and I just see that price tag rising.  As for Mo, anything less of $45 in guarantees is a slap in the face at this stage of the game.  If he plays the way he always does, he’ll be backing his SUV up to the vault.

In the end, the guys upstairs are the ones that have to decide on how and how much it’s going to take to keep the Jersey native in Green and White.  Literally, the business office is on the second floor of the facility.  I say make him happy and turn him loose on the rest of the NFL for years to come!

Next: New York Jets: Antonio Cromartie doesn't need to rush return

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