The Jets will soon have to make a decision on linebacker Erin Henderson, as Rich Cimini of ESPN.com writes. Henderson was the Jets’ starting inside linebacker for the first six games of the season before he was placed on the non-football injury list for the remainder of the season without explanation. Now, the team will have to make their call on Henderson in two parts.
Under the terms of his two-year, $4MM deal signed last offseason, the Jets must decide by Wednesday whether to trigger their option for 2017. There’s no financial commitment with that call, however – that doesn’t come into play until March 9, when he’s due a $250K roster bonus. If he’s kept, he’ll count for $2.75MM against the salary cap with a non-guaranteed base salary of $2.25MM.
We still don’t know exactly what happened with Henderson, but he has battled alcohol issues in the past. Recently, on Twitter, Henderson declined to go into specifics, though he did say “all is well on [his] end.” If Henderson is healthy, will the Jets keep him on board? As Cimini notes, the Jets could use depth at inside linebacker behind David Harris and Darron Lee. However, his cap number is a bit too high for a backup, he turns 31 in July, and his off-the-field history is off-putting.
While we wait to see how that plays out, here’s more from the AFC East:
- Darryl Slater of NJ.com ranked the Jets‘ likeliest offseason cuts from least to most likely. Henderson was tied for the top spot with 99% odds, along with right tackle Breno Giacomini and left tackle Ryan Clady. Giacomini, 32 in September, had a bad 2015 and was slowed by a back injury last season, so the Jets will likely drop him to save $4.5MM against the cap. Clady, meanwhile, could be brought back on a cheaper deal, but there’s no way the Jets will keep him on his current deal and pass on $10MM in cap savings. Others with a high probability of getting cut include free safety Marcus Gilchrist ($4.625MM in cap savings, $2.75MM dead money) and cornerback Darrelle Revis ($9.3MM savings, $6MM dead). Interestingly, he feels there’s a 60% chance that Brandon Marshall ($7.5MM savings, no dead money) will be released.
- Jets GM Mike Maccagnan isn’t prioritizing character as he looks to rebuild, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News writes. Mehta points to the team’s recent waiver claim on Mike Pennel as an example of a low-risk move on a potentially troubled player. He also noted that cornerback K’Waun Williams – who is set to meet with the Jets this week – was reportedly mulling retirement in Cleveland last offseason when he lost his starting job. Since then, however, we have learned that Williams was dealing with an ankle issue that the franchise effectively shrugged off.
- Defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson might have less trade value than you’d expect.