The Jets are running out of premium options for WRs in free agency

FLORHAM PARK, NJ – A look at what's happening around the New York Jets:

1. Recipient required: Now that Aaron Rodgers has a new security detail — we're talking about a revamped offensive line, not the Secret Service — the focus shifts to wide receiver.

When Rodgers arrived 11 months ago, his receiving staff included Jarrett Wilson and Corey Davis, newcomers/old friends Allen Lazard and Randall Cobb and newcomer Mecole Hardman — a deep and balanced group on paper.

It never worked out. Wilson and Lazard are the only ones remaining, and Lazard, who sat on the bench last season, may be on thin ice. Rodgers, who has said in multiple interviews they need to add a receiver, may be wondering about the status of his weapons because the Jets failed to address the position in the first wave of free agency.

Options are quickly dwindling, and there is mounting pressure on general manager Joe Douglas to offer his services to a future Hall of Fame quarterback.

Douglas, who had some degree of interest in Jerry Jeudy and Keenan Allen before they were traded to the Cleveland Browns and Chicago Bears, respectively, is still exploring the trade market, a source said. Tee Higgins has requested a trade from the Cincinnati Bengals and San Francisco 49ers star Brandon Aiyuk is rumored to have roving eyes, but there is no concrete evidence to suggest either is available.

The most logical plan for trade-hunting Douglas is to sign a free agent at a moderate price and then dip into the deep pool of receivers in the draft. Talent evaluators believe the quality will extend into the third round, when the Jets take their second pick (they traded their second-round pick for Rodgers).

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As for the free agents, it's a mediocre group that includes a fading star (Odell Beckham Jr.), a star coming off ACL surgery (Mike Williams), a steady WR3 (Tyler Boyd) and another friend of Rodgers' (Marquez Valdes-Scantling). Williams is reportedly visiting this week. Also keep an eye on Beckham, who he was close to signing last year.

Davis, who applied to reinstate after electing to sit out last season, is available. The Jets would welcome him back to compete for a roster spot, but the feeling is that he will explore the market and prefer a team closer to his home in Nashville, Tennessee.

Right now, the Jets' top three receivers are Wilson and second-year players Xavier Gipson and Jason Brownlee, the latter two of whom combined for 26 points as starters. Maybe Rodgers will soon be on the campaign trail — as a receiver.

2. Tyrone effect: The addition of former Dallas Cowboys left tackle Tyrone Smith does three things: completes the initial phase of the offensive line rebuild; It allows the Jets to keep Alijah Vera-Tucker in guard; The draft board opens with the tenth pick.

The Jets' current starting five, from left to right: Smith, John Simpson (via free agency), Joe Tippman, Vera Tucker and Morgan Moses (via trade). On paper, it's a much better line than last season.

Before the Smith trade, most people in the mock draft world would have the Jets pick a tackle at 10, but now they could go for a wide receiver or tight end, perhaps Georgia's Brock Powers. In an ideal world, they would want to trade for another top 100 pick. Right now, they only have two.

The additions of Smith and Moses won't prevent them from being drafted tackles — they're 33 years old, on one-year contracts — but they certainly reduce the need.

3. All in: Smith's move reflects a sense of urgency felt throughout the organization, which was put on alert by owner Woody Johnson after another disappointing season. Smith is a quick-fix/high-risk player.

If the eight-time Pro Bowler is in his game, the Jets will have their best left tackle since D'Brickashaw Ferguson a decade ago. If injuries remain an issue (37 games missed over the past four seasons) and he succumbs to “Father Time,” comparisons will be drawn to the debacles of Duane Brown and Ryan Clady. Smith allowed two sacks in his last game, Dallas' playoff loss to the Green Bay Packers. Maybe it was just a bad day at the office.

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Financially, the Jets have protected themselves with an incentive-laden, one-year contract that includes less than $7 million in guarantees.

4. Jefferson Memorial: When the Jets signed defensive tackles Javon Kinlaw and Leke Votto, the natural assumption was that they moved on from Quinton Jefferson. not like that. They wanted him back. Two sources said the Jets were given a chance to match the one-year, $3.6 million contract offer they received from Brown, but they took too long to respond. Jefferson had agreed to terms with Cleveland by the time the Jets responded. Things move quickly in free agency.

5. Oldies, but goodies: The Jets may be getting younger at some positions, but not their quarterback.

Rodgers is 40 years old. Newly signed backup Tyrod Taylor will be 35 years old by the start of the season. The Jets will have the oldest quarterback room in the league. In fact, they will be the first team to have two quarterbacks in the 35-and-over category on their Week 1 roster since the 2020 Atlanta Falcons with Matt Ryan (35) and Matt Schaub (39), according to ESPN Stats & Information .

It also happened with the 2016 New Orleans Saints with Drew Brees (37) and Luke McCown (35).

This isn't Taylor's first time playing as a young quarterback. In 2019, he backed up Philip Rivers (38) to the Los Angeles Chargers.

6. A strong man, but…: Taylor showed last season that he can still play. With the New York Giants, he ranked 19th out of 41 quarterbacks in expected points added/play, based on at least 200 running backs. (By the way, Zach Wilson was 40th.) The question with Taylor is his durability.

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During his 13-year career, he suffered broken ribs and four documented concussions, as well as hamstring, wrist and quadriceps injuries. He now supports the quarterback with a surgically repaired Achilles tendon. The Jets are hoping the injury gods will smile on them for a change.

7. For sale: Speaking of Wilson, his New Jersey apartment went up for sale about 10 days ago, the New York Post reported. The Jets are trying to find a new home for him, but the trade market hasn't been kind.

8. One for the team: By reworking his contract and saving the cap, middle linebacker C.J. Mosley earned his roster spot this season and boosted his chances of returning in 2025. That was important for their defensive leader, who turns 32 on June 19. A player who has often spoken about wanting to be around when the Jets breakout.

In terms of basic accounting, he took a pay cut, converting the $17 million (non-guaranteed) final year of his deal into a two-year contract for $17.25 million ($13.25 million guaranteed).

It took some time to accomplish this. Talks had been dragging on until last week, when former Jets linebacker Demario Davis reworked his deal with the Saints — the same deal Moseley accepted two days later. The Davis deal provided a practical framework.

Mosley's original deal (five years, $85 million in 2019) was always going to be an odd one for off-ball linebackers. His new annual average ($8.625 million) is tied for 11th at his position.

9. Cane leaf tea: Cornerback DJ Reed recently changed agents, sparking speculation that he is looking for a contract extension. One of the team's best players over the past two years, Reed is set to make a non-guaranteed $10.5 million in the final year of his contract.

10. Communications: Five of the six new players the Jets added have ties to the Ravens and 49ers — the former organizations of Douglas and coach Robert Saleh, respectively. Familiarity carries weight.

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