The New York Jets might be breaking up a tight bond this offseason.
Jake Rill was recently tasked with picking several contracts Gang Green “must consider” cutting ties with this offseason. One of the main names featured on the list was wide receiver, Braxton Berrios.
Last offseason in the buildup towards the 2022 season, Berrios was spotted on numerous occasions hanging out with his quarterback Zach Wilson.
The bromance got so intense that a t-shirt company started pumping out matching Jets-inspired merch featuring the phrases ‘Braxton Berrios is good’ and ‘Zach Wilson is good’, which they both wore during joint workouts.
Zach Wilson and Braxton Berrios Didn’t Live up to Jets Hype
In 2022 Wilson and Berrios developed a strong chemistry.
Berrios delivered a career season both offensively and on special teams. He hauled in 46 receptions for 431 receiving yards and scored two touchdowns. Additionally, he was voted an All-Pro as a return man.
So much so that the former Miami product was rewarded for his efforts on a brand new two-year contract extension worth over $12 million with $7 million of that guaranteed.
After a disappointing 2022 season in which Berrios ranked ninth on the team in receiving yards, Jake Rill said “there’s no reason” for the Jets to pay him what he’s owed in 2023.
Gang Green could move on by cutting him but they would have to eat $3.2 million in dead cap.
There is a chance as Rill explains in his column that the team could explore a restructuring based on his contract. However, Rill revealed such a level of conviction with this potential move that he said “even if they have to pay the dead cap, they’ll still be clearing some space that could be useful while making other moves.”
Jets’ Receiver Room Is Getting Stacked
Berrios at 27 years of age is still a viable piece that can be salvaged. However considering all of the weapons currently on the roster and the thought that the team could add more this offseason, the former Miami product has become expendable.
That is especially true when you consider that head coach Robert Saleh slid wideout, Elijah Moore, from the outside to the slot midseason.
It is still very much to be determined whether the Jets will keep Moore in the slot or if they will kick him back outside.
The wrench being thrown into all of this is the switching of the guard at the offensive coordinator position. Mike LaFleur is now in Los Angeles with the Rams and Nathaniel Hackett is the new OC for Gang Green.
It shouldn’t be completely going from oil to water, but there will be a learning curve and some new intricacies added to this offense in 2023.
With Wilson likely set for a backup or third-string role next season his relationship with Berrios and the importance of that to the team has fallen by the wayside.
At the end of the day, the NFL is a numbers game and the Jets have a ton of moves to make this offseason and every penny they can create will be important.