3 former NY Jets who won’t live up to their new contracts

These former Jets might not live up to their contracts

Sam Darnold
Sam Darnold / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages
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The NFL is a league of assets. It's about knowing when to invest in your current assets just as much as it's about knowing when to cut bait with said assets. This, of course, applies to the NY Jets as well.

The Jets have parted ways with a number of notable players in recent years. Some of those players went on to achieve great things post-Florham Park, with someone like Demario Davis standing out as a primary example.

Others failed to reach the same heights they did in New York and ultimately fell short of expectations with their new teams. Here's looking at you, Jamal Adams.

Free agency is a gambling man's game, and the following three players are evidence of that. Here are three former Jets players who might not live up to the contracts they signed with their new teams this offseason.

3. Sheldon Rankins, DT, Cincinnati Bengals

  • 2 years, $24.5 million ($8 million)

When the Jets signed defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins to a two-year, $17 million contract prior to the start of the 2021 season, the former first-round pick was hoping to revitalize his once-promising career.

Jets head coach Robert Saleh helped him do that, maximizing his pass-rush talents en route to a successful two seasons with the organization. The Jets let Rankins walk in the 2023 offseason — largely because of the hefty one-year, $10.5 million contract he signed with the Houston Texans.

Rankins parlayed his success with the Jets into a sizable pay raise in Houston, and he put together another solid season under DeMeco Ryans. A free agent again this offseason, Rankins once again received a pay raise, this time in the form of a two-year, $24.5 million contract with the Cincinnati Bengals.

Rankins is a quality interior pass rusher, although his struggles against the run are notable. Over $12 million per season is a lot to pay a guy whose production is remarkably similar to someone like Quinton Jefferson, who signed a $3.6 million this offseason.

Credit to Rankins for revitalizing his career and received a few pay days now, but it'll be tough for him to live up to that contract.