Marcus Maye loved the well-timed finest season of his profession within the closing yr of his contract.
Can he do it once more? Maye and the Jets ought to discover out quickly after Thursday’s NFL-imposed 4 p.m. deadline for franchise-tagged players to sign extensions passed with no deal in place. Negotiations can’t resume till after the season.
Maye’s first probability to achieve free company was delayed in March when the Jets utilized the franchise tag, giving the 2 sides 4 extra months to work out a long-term marriage. The 2017 second-round draft decide is coming off profession highs for tackles (82), sacks (two), passes defended (11) and turnovers generated (5) however returning to a protection the place edge-rusher Carl Lawson ($15 million per yr) and inside linebacker C.J. Mosley ($17 million) are increased paid due to free-agent splurges.
The homegrown Maye’s one-year contract will pay $10.612 million, which was the common of the 5 highest salaries over the past 5 years for safeties. It’s a relative cut price as a result of six safeties have signed new contracts because the begin of 2019 that common greater than $14 million per yr, indicating the market is regaining energy after a downturn in 2018.
The Jets made a number of presents to the 28-year-old Maye after he was tagged, a league supply advised The Publish. His first contract paid $6.5 million complete over 4 years.
If Maye was utilizing $14 million as his market worth and the Jets reportedly as soon as supplied about $8.5 million earlier than the tag was utilized, assembly in the midst of what’s a sizeable hole at that value level would have meant about $11.25 million — or the annual common on the deal John Johnson signed with the Browns as the highest 2021 free agent. That’s probably close to the place talks stalled despite the fact that Johnson and Maye have had comparable careers as second-day picks within the 2017 draft.
Deadline day was quiet throughout the league with one exception: The Panthers changed the tag with a four-year, $72 million extension for offensive deal with Taylor Moton.
No offers obtained carried out for receivers Chris Godwin (Buccaneers) and Allen Robinson (Bears), offensive linemen Cam Robinson (Jaguars) and Brandon Scherff (Washington) or security Marcus Williams (Saints). It’s the second-straight tag yr for Scherff. Defensive lineman Leonard Williams (Giants) and security Justin Simmons (Broncos) had been tagged however beforehand reached new offers.
The Jets tagged defensive deal with Muhammad Wilkerson in 2016, kicker Nick Folks in 2014, linebacker David Harris in 2011 and defensive finish John Abraham in 2005 and 2006. The tag purchased time for Wilkerson, Harris and Folks to signal multiyear extensions, and Abraham’s second tag preceded his commerce to the Falcons.
So, Maye would be the first Jet to play on the tag since Abraham in 2005. The distinction is Maye already signed his tag — about two weeks after it was applied — whereas Abraham waited till the tip of coaching camp to signal.
It isn’t recognized if Maye — who skipped voluntary spring exercises however attended necessary minicamp — will attempt to ship a message by reporting late to coaching camp. Underneath the collective bargaining settlement ratified in 2020, signed gamers who maintain out for 5 days or fewer initially of camp usually are not topic to fines, however a sixth day might lead to forfeiting 15 p.c of wage. Groups are allowed so as to add 1 p.c for every subsequent day of a holdout as much as 25 p.c.
However the Jets try to keep away from an acrimonious relationship with Maye. Particularly after the ugly cut up with Jamal Adams. Maye is the one first- or second-round decide from any draft class previous to 2019 who stays with the group.
The Jets nonetheless have about $24.9 million in salary-cap house accessible, in accordance with NFLPA information.