The NY Jets have somewhat of a history of taking a long time to sign their top draft picks, and that seems to be the case again this year. Both of the team's top two 2023 NFL Draft picks, Will McDonald and Joe Tippmann, remain unsigned.
The Jets were extremely proactive in signing the majority of their draft picks this year. Sixth-round pick Jarrick Bernard-Converse became one of the first rookies in the NFL to sign when the Jets agreed to a deal just a few days after the draft.
By May 18th, the Jets had signed five of the team's seven draft picks — all except for McDonald and Tippmann. However, it's now been well over a month since their last draft pick signed (Carter Warren), and we still have no word on McDonald or Tippmann.
Is this abnormal? What might be the holdup? Is there any reason to be concerned?
Should NY Jets fans be concerned that the team hasn't signed Will McDonald and Joe Tippmann yet?
This isn't the first time the Jets have failed to sign their top draft picks as we approach training camp in July. In fact, just two years ago, Zach Wilson was the last first-round pick to sign his rookie contract when he signed just a few days before August.
The same thing happened with both Sam Darnold and Quinnen Williams, while Mekhi Becton also wasn't signed until mid/late July. This has been a recurring pattern for the Jets over the years for one reason or another.
McDonald is one of just nine first-round picks to remain unsigned at the time of writing. Of those nine players, only Emmanuel Forbes and Christian Gonzalez were drafted later than he was. The majority of unsigned first-round picks are early selections, including four of the top five picks in this year's draft.
As for Tippmann, his status is a little more reasonable. Only 18 of the NFL's 32 second-round picks have been signed as of now.
The holdup seems to be centered around agents pushing for their clients to receive guaranteed money in the third year of their rookie contracts, similar to the deal Keeanu Benton just received from the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Ultimately, there's no real reason to be concerned at this time. McDonald and Tippmann will eventually sign their rookie contracts, ideally before training camp begins next month.
If training camp arrives and McDonald and Tippmann still haven't signed their contracts, the headlines will start. Either way, they will be signed. There's no reason to worry.