The deadline for the New York Jets and franchise-tagged safety Marcus Maye to reach long term agreement passed Thursday at 4 p.m.
Maye will play the 2021 season on the tag, a one-year $10.61 million dollar contract and the two sides can not work out an extension until next off-season.
Joe Douglas had stated earlier in the off-season that signing Maye to a long-term deal was a priority.
Maye is the best and most experienced member of the Jets secondary.
He was a second-round pick in 2017 and has played his entire career with Gang Green.
Maye had an excellent season in 2020 receiving an 82.9 overall grade from Pro Football Focus (PFF), the highest of his career.
In fact, PFF had him ranked as their sixth-best safety in 2020.
Maye had a reputation coming out of Florida as an oft-injured player, a reputation that somehow I still see on social media.
The former Gator has played and started all 16 games in three of his first four NFL seasons.
Play Like a Jet’s Luke Grant did a great breakdown of Maye’s strengths and weaknesses here.
Does all this mean that Joe Douglas should back up a Brinks truck full of Woody Johnson’s money and drop it at Maye’s front door?
New York still controls Maye for the foreseeable future.
The New York Jets can place a second franchise tag on him next season and pay him $12.73 million in 2022.
Now let’s get crazy and say the Jets slap the tag on Maye for the third time in 2023, he would make 144% of his previous year’s salary about $18.33 million.
In that scenario, Maye would have essentially signed a three-year $41.67 contract with an average value of $13.89 million.
This strategy would probably alienate Maye more than he already is but these should be the basic parameters for an extension.
Here is where the disconnect comes into play. Maye is almost 28 and has made just $6.5 million in his first four seasons, the man wants to get paid and who could blame him?
The top five highest-paid safeties make at least $14 million so one would think Maye wants to at least be in that discussion.
Clearly, Douglas does not think that is where Maye’s value lies.
Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported that the Jets offered Maye a contract the had an APY of 20% below the 2021 tag amount, around $8.4 million.
“The Jets are cheap and never pay their homegrown talent!” and “Same old Jets!” are the cries you heard from Jets fans on social media and in-person (people still do that ya know, talk in person, face-to-face).
These two statements are not rooted in truth. The last homegrown talent the Jets extended was Muhammad Wilkerson and the Jets regretted that one before the ink was dry on the contract.
The truth is the Jets have not drafted many players deserving of a second contract.
And the tired “Same old Jets” non-sense, the same old Jets would have made Maye the highest-paid safety in the NFL.
The Jets’ issues have never been not spending money.
The issue has been spending money the wrong way.
Paying good players like they are great players puts you on the fast track to mediocracy (at this point maybe Jets fans would sign up for that).
If the Toronto Argonauts had offered C.J. Mosley the deal the Jets did two years ago, he’d be playing in the CFL right now.
The Jets have had a history of either overpaying or being used as a pawn for agents to drive up their client’s value.
Now they have a GM that has a plan for both the long and short term and it is refreshing.
It’s no longer the “same old Jets” it’s the “brand new Jets” and the season can not get here fast enough!