NY Jets tried to trade for superstar WR before 2024 NFL Draft

The Jets wanted to trade for Justin Jefferson
Justin Jefferson
Justin Jefferson / Nic Antaya/GettyImages

When the opportunity presents itself to potentially land one of the best players in the NFL, you always make the call. That's precisely what the NY Jets did when superstar wide receiver Justin Jefferson was rumored to be available earlier this offseason.

The Minnesota Vikings signed Jefferson to a record-shattering four-year, $140 million extension last week, making him the highest-paid non-quarterback in NFL history. Prior to that extension, however, there was some doubt that a deal would be reached.

That's why teams were calling the Vikings to gauge their interest in a potential trade involving the All-Pro wide receiver. One of those teams was the Jets.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported this week that the Jets, San Francisco 49ers, and Indianapolis Colts all made calls to the Vikings prior to the 2024 NFL Draft about a potential Jefferson trade.

It doesn't seem as though the conversation extended beyond preliminary discussions, as the Vikings were determined to keep their star receiver, but the Jets were one of three teams interested. It's hard to blame them.

The NY Jets called about a Justin Jefferson trade

Jefferson is someone who needs no introduction. The three-time Pro Bowler has topped 1,400 yards in three of his four NFL seasons and was well on his way to another league-leading season before an injury limited him to 10 games in 2023.

This is a player who has averaged just shy of 100 receiving yards per game in his NFL career. He led the NFL with 128 catches for 1,809 yards in 2022 and was on pace for an even more productive season in 2023 before his injury.

When a player like that is rumored to be available, it always makes sense to inquire. The Jets have been sniffing around the wide receiver market over the last two years, with numerous rumors connecting the team to Davante Adams.

Garrett Wilson is the Jets' unquestioned No. 1 wide receiver, but the team has been searching for help alongside him. The Jets signed Mike Williams and drafted Malachi Corley this offseason to hopefully provide the help they were looking for.

It's hard to say exactly what it might've cost to land Jefferson in a trade. Such a trade would've been one of the most high-profile and expensive in NFL history, likely costing the Jets numerous first-round picks on top of the record-breaking extension they would've had to give him.

Of course, for a player like Jefferson, it would've been worth it. The Vikings just had no interest in trading their franchise cornerstone — for obvious reasons.

The Jets did their due diligence exploring Jefferson's market, and it wouldn't be a surprise to see the team poke around if other star receivers, such as the aforementioned Adams, do become available during the season.

Justin Jefferson may have been a pipedream, but the Jets are keeping their options option at wide receiver.