The New York Jets will undoubtedly want cornerback Brian Poole to return for next season, but they may need to pay top dollar to re-sign him in the offseason.
The New York Jets will need to make crucial decisions on a number of in-house free agents this offseason and one of the most important players they will need to determine the future of is cornerback Brian Poole.
Poole was signed by the Jets last offseason after spending the first three years of his career with the Atlanta Falcons. After an impressive rookie season, the 2016 undrafted free agent tailed off with a couple of uninspiring seasons.
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For that reason, the Jets were able to snag him on a cheap, one-year, $3.5 million contract. He rewarded them with the best season of his NFL career finishing with a 79.0 Pro Football Focus grade which was far and away the best out of any Gang Green cornerback.
But now, Poole is set to hit unrestricted free agency and will likely command a much bigger payday than the one he received a year ago. Simply put, don’t expect the Jets to sign him to such a team-friendly deal again.
While the Jets obviously want Poole back and many assume they won’t think twice about their decision, it isn’t always that easy. The Jets are going to have to spend, likely more than most are assuming.
The Athletic’s Connor Hughes said in a recent mailbag that Poole took a chance on himself last offseason anticipating a bigger payday if he played well in 2019. Not only did he play well, he had the best season of his four-year career.
Poole is going to want to cash in — and who could blame him?
Hughes speculated that Poole would sign with “whatever team offers him the most money.” And if that’s the case, the Jets are going to have to “open their wallet” and pay the talented cornerback.
A fair estimate of his true value could be attained by looking at last year’s free agency. The Denver Broncos signed the top slot cornerback on the market in Bryce Callahan to a three-year, $21 million deal which equates to an average of $7 million per year.
Expect Poole’s contract to be right around that.
Overthecap.com actually predicts Poole’s value to be around $11 million per season but that figure seems incredibly high and it’s very unlikely he sees that kind of money. Either way, the Jets are going to have to pay — and they’re going to have to pay more than last year.
The Jets want Brian Poole back and it certainly seems as if he’s open to a reunion. But they’re going to have to pay top dollar if they want to see him in green and white again next season.
At the end of the day, however, he’s worth it.