Big news is starting to roll in as the New York Jets approach Tuesday’s final roster cutdown deadline.
The latest came from NFL reporter Mike Kaye of Pro Football Network, revealing that rookie preseason standout Calvin Jackson Jr. would be waived.
The undrafted wide receiver stole the hearts of many fans throughout June and August but it appears that the Jets will try and sneak him onto the practice squad — as predicted by beat reporters like ESPN’s Rich Cimini and The Athletic’s Zack Rosenblatt.
Does Jackson Cut Hint That Mims Is Staying in NY?
2020 second-round WR Denzel Mims formally requested a trade through his agent on August 25. Since then, the organization has made it clear that they will not trade him unless fair compensation is found. Most recently, head coach Robert Saleh told reporters that “he’s one of our six best receivers and he’s gonna be here as far as I’m concerned.”
That quote came after a massive 102-yard performance in the “Snoopy Bowl.” Jackson hitting waivers may not ensure that Denzel Mims won’t be traded — but it certainly increases the likelihood of that possibility.
The rookie was his greatest competition on the roster at wide receiver. When Rosenblatt chose to waive Jackson during his 53-man projection, he reasoned: “I think Douglas will find a trade for Mims before Week 1 — I just don’t know that it’ll happen in the next 48 hours. So Mims makes the initial roster.”
Cimini similarly wrote that “Douglas won’t cut [Mims] and won’t give him away for pennies on the dollar [either].”
At this stage, both of those thoughts appear to be on the money, although there is one other theory that still involves a Mims departure before the deadline. uSTADIUM — who was second on breaking the Jackson news — does not believe this release has any impact on a Mims trade.
“Numbers game,” they responded to a fan on Twitter, “Jets are probably just keeping 5 WRs.”
Another Mims-related bombshell then dropped a few minutes later. NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reported that “the Jaguars are trading WR Laviska Shenault to the Panthers.”
That sparked a comment from New York Daily News beat reporter Antwan Staley. “I guess the Panthers are out of the Denzel Mims sweepstakes,” he voiced.
All current signs point to Mims staying put in New York for the time being.
Will Jackson Be Claimed?
uSTADIUM also had an opinion on Jackson’s chances of passing through waivers.
“Wouldn’t assume Calvin Jackson Jr. is claimed,” they stated. “Was a try-out UDFA and signed with the Jets. Wasn’t much interest around the league in the draft or in the immediate UDFA period. Doesn’t mean he can’t play – he can, but just a note on how he was previously viewed.”
The 5-foot-9 wideout has certainly proven himself this summer, with smooth route-running, consistent hands, and a surprising vertical leap. He even impressed as a punt returner with a shifty 19-yard return during the final preseason outing against the Giants.
He also had the game-winning touchdown catch from quarterback Chris Streveler, his second game-winning snag of the preseason. Despite the two TDs, Jackson only had four receptions for 19 yards on paper over his three appearances.
The impact felt greater after several highlight-reel plays in practice, however. Following the news of his release, Jackson left a humble message for fans on Twitter. It read: “Another chapter in the book forever grateful & forever blessed [green heart]. Head up chest out!”