Free Agent 2018 N.Y. Jets

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Eddie Castro Sports
Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater gestures to a teammate form the sidelines in the fourth quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday, August 28, 2016.(Pioneer Press: John Autey)

The New York Jets head into this week’s free agent frenzy with a lot of salary cap space money ($89 million to be exact) to potentially make a huge splash by signing key players. It has been well-documented simply because it always seems to be a necessity for the Jets when it comes to needing a quarterback. The best available quarterback in this free agent class is former Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins. Cousins has had some great years in D.C., including the last two in which he played under the team’s franchise tag. There are multiple teams, including the Jets, who are in need of a quarterback. The big question is, at what price would they be willing to pay to add a potential game-changing player? On Tuesday afternoon, that question was answered, but unfortunately, it was not the Jets who came away in the Cousins’ Sweepstakes. It was reported that Kirk Cousins has agreed to terms on a guaranteed 3-year/$84 million contract with the Minnesota Vikings. With Cousins off the market, what will the Jets do now? Here are some potential options for Gang Green.

After losing out on Cousins earlier on Tuesday, Jets General Manager Mike MacCagnan wasted no time in just sitting back and not counting with a quick move. The Jets were able to bring back veteran quarterback Josh McCown on a 1-year/$10 million contract to return to the Jets in which he had his best year in his 15 years as a pro. McCown can flourish in the new offensive system which will now be run by Jeremy Bates. McCown has lasted this long in the league because of his accuracy and smart play and his veteran presence in the locker room which can be beneficial should a younger quarterback were to be drafted by the Jets. Speaking of that, the Jets do have a few other options should McCown not work out for them in his second season with the team. You have quarterbacks like Teddy Bridgewater, A.J. McCarron and even this year’s Super Bowl-winning quarterback Nike Foles (if the Eagles should decide to trade him). The likelihood is that MacCagnan will indeed get his prized quarterback through the draft with the possibility of USC’s Sam Darnold (age 20), Wyoming’s Josh Allen (age 21), or Baker Mayfield (age 22) possibly landing in their laps. This will benefit the Jets nicely should they get their young franchise QB with McCown to help mentor them on life as an NFL quarterback.

It has not been all quiet for the Jets as free agency officially kicks off today. The team was able to agree to terms with former Los Angeles Rams cornerback Trumaine Johnson. Johnson, 28, was the best cornerback available in the free agent class. The Jets are also looking to bring back fellow cornerback Morris Claiborne, who started 15 games last season. If Claiborne returns to the Jets and paired up with Johnson, this will more than likely fortify their secondary which allowed 30 touchdown passes last season. Johnson has 18 interceptions and 42 pass breakups in six seasons (85 career games). With money to spend still, it will be interesting to see what moves Mike MacCagnan has up his sleeves to upgrade this Jets roster.

Sports Notes: (Baseball) We are just over three weeks until Opening Day!

BREAKING NEWS AS WE GO TO PRESS! Teddy Bridgewater will sign a 1-year deal to play for the Jets. Bridgewater did not play last year recovering from a serious injury dating back from the 2016-17 season. Photo credit :  John Autey/Pioneer Press