Already in better shape than most teams in terms of 2022 cap space, the Jets manufactured significantly more breathing room today. New York restructured the contract of linebacker C.J. Mosley, per ESPN’s Field Yates (Twitter link).
As a result of the move, Mosley will see $14.88MM of his base salary converted into a signing bonus, helping to create $11.9MM in cap space for the 2022 season. Two void years have also been tacked on to his deal, which expires in 2024.
The 30-year-old signed a market-altering five-year, $85MM deal in free agency in 2019. The contract’s $17MM annual average value was a record for inside linebackers at the time, and has since been surpassed only by Shaquille Leonard and Fred Warner. In the two years following that contract being signed, however, the four-time Pro Bowler played in just a pair of games due to injury and opting out of the 2020 campaign.
That led to Mosley being frequently named as a trade candidate. Last March, the Jets fielded calls on him, but they elected to keep him in the fold. Finally healthy and available again in 2021, he ranked fourth in the NFL with 168 tackles, adding two sacks and a pair of forced fumbles. Encouraged by that performance, perhaps, this financial move likely ensures that Mosely will remain with the team for at least one more season.
Mosley’s 2023 and 2024 cap hits will now rise to $21.48MM. No guaranteed money remains out of the outstanding $50MM left to be paid out on the deal. Nevertheless, the team’s dead cap charge would outweigh their savings in the event of a release or trade prior to June 1 next year. Given the cumbersome cap hit, however, an extension could be in play, or perhaps more likely, an attempt to get Mosley to take a pay cut like Jamison Crowder did last year.