NY Jets: How will Joe Douglas approach the remaining free-agent market?

NY Jets (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
NY Jets (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

What will the NY Jets and GM Joe Douglas do with the team’s recently-acquired cap space?

It isn’t a coincidence that NY Jets‘ general manager Joe Douglas cut both Quincy Enunwa and Brian Winters within a 24-hour span of each other.

For one, it gave Winters time to find a replacement team, which he had no problem stumbling on a day after being released from New York — that team being the Buffalo Bills.

Quincy Enunwa, who the team placed on the Reserve/PUP list on May 5th, was released this past Monday. Years of battling multiple neck injuries that prohibited him from seeing the field for the majority of the last few years with the Jets made this move come to fruition.

Although Enunwa will likely not sign with a new team soon as he continues to work his way back from a potentially career-ending injury, we wish him all the best.

Releasing Winters at the time that they did puts the team at approximately $29 million at the current league-wide salary cap, per ESPN’s Field Yates.

What could the NY Jets be planning on doing with their newfound cap space?

This could mean one of two things.

The team has enough in storage to target a potential game-changer on the free-agent market (i.e. Jadeveon Clowney or Logan Ryan), or Douglas is playing the waiting game.

That would include potentially carrying over funds to next year which could be the more logical approach to a season that will surely see a dip in the salary cap heading into 2021.

With the projected salary cap heading in the direction of around $175 million in 2021 that would put the Jets at around $34 million in projected space in their current state.

Still, not bad.

Though, the Jets still have enough flexibility to possibly bolster their pass rush or cornerback unit(s) with two potential options. Those two options are the aforementioned Clowney and Ryan.

Clowney, who was rumored to be seeking around $20 million per year, may have lowered his asking price as he has yet to maintain significant interest across all 32 teams.

Ryan, who is reportedly seeking $10 million per year, is a bit more realistic as the team was reportedly on the cusp of signing the veteran cornerback three months ago.

Douglas has been building this team the right way. Not overspending on free agents who will likely leave the team after their first contract isn’t something Jets fans have become accustomed to.

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We were put in the right hands with Douglas at the helm — now it’s time to see how he handles a little extra cash strapped to his back pocket.