New York Jets: 3 starters who won’t be on the team next season
By James Barone
The New York Jets will experience a lot of roster turnover this offseason and that will include some key starters. Here are three 2019 starters who won’t be on the team in 2020.
The New York Jets missed the postseason again and the 10-year postseason drought continues. It hurt more this year because expectations were high due do some very notable offseason acquisitions and with Sam Darnold‘s rookie year in the rearview mirror.
Unfortunately for Jets fans, the big-name acquisitions failed miserably in living up to their past performances which was the basis for the Jets offering such lucrative contracts.
With expensive contracts lacking the on-field productivity to justify the enormous cost, there will undoubtedly be major changes headed for the Jet’s roster next year.
Similarly-talented value players may look to move on to pastures greener than Gang Green. Free-agent Jets that produced well last year may be interested in a new team with more postseason potential and superior contracts.
But which high-cost and value players are most likely to fly away from the Jets during this year’s free agency? Here are three Jet starters that are likely to find themselves playing in different colors next season.
Next: 3. Ryan Kalil
3. Ryan Kalil
Five-time Pro Bowl center, Ryan Kalil retired in 2018 after an outstanding career with the Carolina Panthers. The Jets’ $8.4 million, one-year deal was interesting and lucrative enough to entice the retired Kalil out of retirement to join Gang Green.
He filled an important deficit in the line and it was expected that Kalil would be a catalyst to revitalize a struggling offensive line.
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Despite recruiting Kalil, the Jets had one of the worst offensive line performances in the NFL, rarely giving Darnold a chance to set and throw the ball.
Because of these shortcomings, the Jets will be looking to part ways with the once-retired, 34-year-old center and try to find something else in the draft. But the question is will Kalil entertain other offers or will he return to the peaceful life of retirement?
Next: 2. Robby Anderson
2. Robby Anderson
It seems likely that the Jets top receiver last year, No. 11 Robby Anderson will undoubtedly explore his options during free agency this year.
The Jet’s playmaker is sure to attract attention because of his ability to ignite an offensive with his blazing fast speed. The Jet’s hope of possibly retaining Anderson has been fading like a campfire on a rainy day with reports that he’s looking to earn upwards to $14 million per season.
Multiple insiders have speculated that teams like the Philadelphia Eagles and Oakland Raiders could be interested in signing the speedy deep threat. And with his history of durability, his price tag and market value should only continue to rise.
The Jets would like to keep Anderson, but his salary requirements may be more than the Jets are willing to spend and the Temple product may find himself a new home for the next football season.
Next: 1. Le'Veon Bell
1. Le’Veon Bell
In perhaps one of the most highly-touted acquisitions of last year’s free agency, the Jets stunned the football world by acquiring running back Le’Veon Bell. The acquisition had Jets fans dreaming about a winning season and maybe even a trip to the postseason.
The superstar signed a $52.5 million, four-year contract with the Jets that added to the hype and expectations Jets fans had of the former Steelers running back. There were, however, concerns about his conditioning since Bell was coming off of a missed season due to a contract dispute with his former team.
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Instead of lighting up the field, Bell had the worst rushing season of his career. To be fair, he was at a real disadvantage running behind one of the worst offensive lines in the league.
Overall, it has been viewed as a failed experiment and the Jets are likely ready to part ways with Bell this offseason. Despite the lackluster year, Bell will surely find a home in the NFL.
The Houston Texans and Kansas City Chiefs are both looking for a solid running back to help them improve their running game next year and Bell might fit in nicely.
With Bell gone, we could expect the Jets to re-sign veteran running back Bilal Powell who did not play that much last year, but was impressive when he carried the ball.
Once again, loyal Jets fans witness a disappointing season. This one hurt more than others because the Jets “were supposed to be good” this year due to offseason talent acquisition.
It’s time to adjust and make changes so that Jets fans have a reason to hope and dream about the Jets seeing some playoff ball.