Jets Move Over $14 Million, Lock in Team Captain

Robert Saleh, Jets

Getty New York Jets head coach Robert Saleh during the middle of a preseason game.

The New York Jets have moved around some serious money around ahead of the 2022 season.

According to Field Yates of ESPN, Gang Green has “converted” over $14.88 million of linebacker CJ Mosley’s base salary into a signing bonus. In other words, the move helped created nearly $12 million in cap space for this upcoming season.

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What Does It All Mean?

Prior to this restructure the Jets had an opt-out after this season on Mosley’s contract.

If they exercised that they could have moved on from the former Alabama star with minimal dead cap (only $3 million) at the same time they would have also saved over $15 million in cap relief.

However, the relief they earned in 2022 came at a price.

Now here is how Mosley’s contract breaks down through the final two years of the contract (per Connor Hughes of SNY):

  • $21.46 million cap hit (2023)
  • $21.45 million cap hit (2024)

Now if the Jets cut Mosley in 2023 his dead cap charge has surged to $11.84 million.

Hughes said this “likely ties” the Jets team captain to the team in 2023. That wasn’t the case prior to this restructuring where he likely would have been cut after this season.

An Interesting Move

The Jets had to get under the salary cap ahead of the 2022 season and this Mosley move made it happen.

Some fans were hoping this could mean another blockbuster move is coming, however, Hughes threw cold water on that idea saying on Twitter that this was more so procedural:

Even with that being the case, this move was stunning.

General manager Joe Douglas doesn’t normally do this with contracts and especially with older veterans.

You would’ve thought the GM would be licking his chops to get out of this Mosley contract with as little damage as possible next offseason. However, now that path became a lot more difficult.

Mosley is 30 years old and heading into 2023 will be 31. Through the first two years of his contract, the veteran linebacker only played in portions of two games.

The free agent splurging initially looked like a total disaster, however, Mosley bounced back last season with a historic campaign:

  • 168 combined tackles
  • Two forced fumbles
  • Two sacks

Apparently, the Jets are believers that wasn’t a one-off and he can continue to have success into his 30s.

Mosley has been the unquestioned leader on this defense. Head coach Robert Saleh cut his teeth on that side of the ball for a long time and has a strong reputation for building up linebackers.

This was a pairing that most weren’t sure was going to happen. Saleh has admitted to the media that he wasn’t sure if the former Alabama standout could transition to their scheme.

Then Mosley shed a bunch of weight, bought in, and delivered a standout season last year. Now the Jets are planning on a juicy encore in 2022.

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