Though there are a few candidates, there is one New York Jets player who screams veteran cap casualty more than anybody.
Uh oh. Do you feel that?
It’s the boogeyman coming to get you old-timers.
To clarify – as I’m positive that last sentence needs clarification – the boogeyman is the NFL salary cap and old-timers are the veterans in the league that “plays for pay.” It’s almost about that time for veteran NFL professionals to start shaking in their boots, for they understand that they’re on that horrid shortlist of qualifying as a veteran cap casualty.
In the case of the pro football team who calls Florham Park, New Jersey home – the New York Jets – not much is different.
Mike Maccagnan, too, has his shortlist of veteran cap casualties. However, in Mikey Mac’s case, his back is up against the wall.
The Jets have a measly $3,154,456 in cap space (top 51 players). Jets fans knew there’d be a price to pay the lavished spending of last offseason, but didn’t think money would be desperately needed for a quarterback.
33-year old Ryan Fitzpatrick changed all of that.
Fitz is still lingering out in free agent land while he and the Jets still have mutual interest. Actually, they still love each other, they’re just simply putting each other through the ringer thanks to smarts on both sides (need, market, etc.).
So, what’s a GM to do?
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The only thing Macc can do – unless he’s willing to go to battle with Geno Smith as his starter – is look for a way to get Fitz back into the fold. Most have the number of $8 million as the mark the Jets are currently offering Fitzpatrick. Fitz, of course, has another number in mind.
With just $3.154M in space, something’s gotta give.
Names such as Eric Decker and Buster Skrine are prime candidates to have reworked contracts – in effort to clear up more space – but still, going purely on the idea of reworking contracts to get Fitz back won’t get it done alone.
And hey, even if Fitz doesn’t come back, the veteran cap casualty list still exists.
Here are the New York Jets top veteran cap casualties post Jun. 1 (as that marks the date for a brand new financial NFL season):