The New York Jets finally re-signed their star Muhammad Wilkerson, but a couple of years ago they had a very similar situation with another star player.
As everyone already knows, the New York Jets have finally locked up their star defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson to a long-term extension. One that’ll keep him in a Jets uniform for the foreseeable future. Not too long ago, the Jets had a very similar and dire situation with another mercurial star, cornerback Darrelle Revis.
Of course the entire saga was caught on tape, by way of HBO’s Hard Knock series that followed the Jets through their offseason, training camp and right up until the regular season. While at first it seemed obvious a deal would be consummated between the greatest player in franchise history and the team, it just wasn’t that simple.
Nor was this negotiation between Wilkerson and the Jets so many years later. Ultimately the same result was reached, a long-term deal.
But taking a closer look at the contract Revis received, it was labeled by many as a Band-Aid deal. A contract that gave him a ton of cash up front ($32M guaranteed of a $46M dollar deal to be exact), while also giving the Jets a bit of cap flexibility.
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In this 2016 offseason, it appears the Jets were able to finagle a very similar deal with Wilkerson’s camp.
The final numbers have come out and the Jets gave Wilkerson a 5-year deal for $85M dollars.
Usually whatever the face value number ($85M in this case) is usually a bloated figure that the player will never reach.
It’s all about the guarantees and Wilkerson got $37M fully guaranteed in the first two years and another $17M guaranteed in year three.
I give my all every Sunday on the field and play with so much love and passion for the game. I'm (cont) https://t.co/UMuHELXCfw
— Muhammad Wilkerson (@mowilkerson) July 15, 2016
So with this deal, what have the Jets afforded themselves? Well, with this new deal Wilkerson’s rights are in the Jets hands until the 2021 offseason.
Oddly enough, the Jets hold the rights of their other two defensive stars in Leonard Williams (2019 offseason) and Sheldon Richardson (until 2018 offseason). This Wilkerson deal provides time to work out those contracts, while also providing the Jets with a steadying force in the middle of their defense.
The Jets gave Wilkerson the Revis treatment, with the benefit of knowing that Wilkerson won’t be doing any star-studded holdouts two years into the deal. Now the Jets immediate focus turns to training camp, but with a keen eye on Richardson’s future contract situation.