NY Jets spurned again as Marqui Christian deal falls through
By Justin Fried
The NY Jets saw one of their free-agent signings fall through for the second consecutive offseason, this time with backup safety Marqui Christian.
Last offseason, the NY Jets saw one of their prized free-agent signings in Anthony Barr walk away before ever signing a deal with the team. This year, a similar situation has transpired with safety Marqui Christian.
The two sides reportedly came to an agreement on a one-year, $1.25 million deal with incentives reaching up to $2 million last Saturday. But as reported by Brian Costello of the NY Post, that deal eventually fell through.
Little reason was given for this unexpected development other than the simple conclusion that the two sides couldn’t agree on the final terms of the contract. As a result, Christian is a free-agent once again.
This is familiar territory for the Jets who saw the aforementioned Barr deal fall through last offseason after the star defender decided that he didn’t want to leave the Minnesota Vikings. But the contractual blunder is a little different this time around.
Christian’s deal is the third one to have fallen apart in the last few days, following Michael Brockers and Darqueze Dennard who both saw their contracts fall through as well.
Brockers quickly re-signed with the Los Angeles Rams while Dennard could be an intriguing target for a cornerback-starved Jets team. The speculation is that the recent limitations brought on by the COVID-19 situation have negatively impacted communication between teams and players.
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Players with injury concerns haven’t been able to take physicals in person which has led to multiple players remaining on the market longer than usual — see Cam Newton.
For that reason, this situation isn’t completely unexcepted given what has occurred over the last few weeks. And if the Jets were going to lose one of their free-agent signings, at least it wasn’t one of their more high-profile ones.
Christian has spent the last four seasons as a reserve safety and special-teamer for the Rams playing in 55 games while making his first career start this past season.
The 25-year-old was exected to serve as a core special-teamer with the Jets while likely assuming the role of the team’s third safety. Behind Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye, the Jets don’t have a ton of depth.
Perhaps this opens up the possibility for the return of fan-favorite Rontez Miles. But given his age (31-years-old) and recent injury history, the Jets might opt to go cheaper and younger at the position.
Either way, losing out on a free-agent believed to have signed is always a disappointment. But at least the Jets could take solace in knowing that they’re not the only ones this has happened to this offseason.