Marcus Maye loved the well-timed greatest season of his profession within the ultimate 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 gamers to signal extensions handed with no deal in place. Negotiations can’t resume till after the season.
Maye’s first probability to succeed in 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 choose 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 greater paid due to free-agent splurges.
The homegrown Maye’s one-year contract can pay $10.612 million, which was the common of the 5 highest salaries over the past 5 years for safeties. It’s a relative discount as a result of six safeties have signed new contracts for the reason that begin of 2019 that common greater than $14 million per yr, indicating the market is regaining power after a downturn in 2018.
The Jets made a number of affords to the 28-year-old Maye after he was tagged, a league supply informed 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 doubtless close to the place talks stalled although 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 sort out Taylor Moton.
No offers bought performed 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 sort out 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 utilized — whereas Abraham waited till the top of coaching camp to signal.
It isn’t identified if Maye — who skipped voluntary spring exercises however attended necessary minicamp — will attempt to ship a message by reporting late to coaching camp. Below the collective bargaining settlement ratified in 2020, signed gamers who maintain out for 5 days or fewer at the beginning of camp are usually not topic to fines, however a sixth day may end in forfeiting 15 % of wage. Groups are allowed so as to add 1 % for every subsequent day of a holdout as much as 25 %.
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 choose from any draft class previous to 2019 who stays with the group.
The Jets nonetheless have about $24.9 million in salary-cap area obtainable, in line with NFLPA information.