TJB- Jets won't pick up Clady's 2017 option
Posted 16 February 2017 - 09:06 AM
Jets cut ties with Ryan Clady, decline to pick up contract option for 2017
The Jets have cut Ryan Clady.
on February 15, 2017 at 6:42 PM, updated February 15, 2017 at 9:57 PM
The Jets have cut ties (at least for now) with left tackle Ryan Clady, whose 2017 salary cap number was prohibitively high.
But could he still return to the team next season, at a lower price? That is far from a lock right now, yet there are mitigating factors, as the Jets try to find his replacement.
The Jets on Wednesday did not pick up Clady's contract option for 2017, a league source confirmed. ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported the news. Clady is now a free agent.
Another league source told NJ Advance Media the Jets are interested, to at least some degree, in re-signing Clady on a lower-priced contract for 2017.
The Jets had a Wednesday deadline for a Clady decision. That's when Clady's $1 million roster bonus became fully guaranteed. Clady was due to have a non-guaranteed base salary of $10 million in 2017. That was too high for him, considering his recent injury history.
Plus, the Jets desperately needed cap space, and still do. Based on a projected $168 million salary cap in 2017, the Jets were $7.9 million over that number prior to declining Clady's option, according to overthecap.com's estimate.
If Clady doesn't return to the Jets next season, they will create $10 million in cap space (his salary number), but will have to eat a dead money figure of $600,000 (his prorated signing bonus). Still, the $10 million savings is worth it. Remember, though, the Jets would still need to replace Clady at left tackle, one of the NFL's most important positions.
Perhaps they could bring Clady back on a reduced contract. His salary cap hit last season was $5.5 million, including a $3.5 million base salary. That would be a reasonable number for Clady in 2017, presuming no other team gives him more in free agency.
Though this is considered a weak year for left tackles in both free agency and the draft, it seems unlikely Clady would command a huge dollar figure on the free agent market.
But because there aren't a bunch of great left tackle prospects available -- in free agency or the draft -- that leaves the door ajar for Clady to perhaps re-sign with the Jets, after a failed debut season with them in 2016.
The Jets traded for Clady last offseason to replace the retiring, remarkably durable D'Brickashaw Ferguson. But Clady was a disappointment in 2016, when he lasted just half the season before landing on injured reserve.
Clady, who turns 31 in September, has been hampered by injuries in recent seasons. He was limited to two games in 2013 with the Broncos, because of a foot fracture. After playing a full season in 2014 and making the Pro Bowl, he didn't play in 2015, because of an ACL tear.
Last season, he played in nine games (with eight starts) for the Jets before a torn rotator cuff put him on IR. Over the past four seasons, Clady has played in just 27 of 64 possible games, including nine of 32 over the past two years. He has serious durability question marks.
In the bigger picture, the Jets need to get younger on their offensive line. Clady, who would've been entering the final year of his contract, isn't a long-term solution, even if he returns.
The Jets also are expected to release right tackle Breno Giacomini, among several other possible veteran cuts this offseason, as the organization attempts to get younger.
Giacomini was limited last year by a back injury. Cutting him would create $4.5 million in cap space, with $625,000 in dead money attached. Giacomini turns 32 in September. He is no longer an effective player.
When Clady went on IR last season, the Jets replaced him with Ben Ijalana, a career backup who turns 28 in August. He is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in March.
Ijalana isn't an elite left tackle, but he is a serviceable player with 13 career starts, all last season, when he played both tackle positions.
Presuming Giacomini is cut, Ijalana or Brandon Shell could replace him at right tackle, depending on what happens with Clady's potential return -- and whether the Jets would need Ijalana at left tackle. The Jets drafted Shell in Round 5 last year.
Posted 16 February 2017 - 09:32 AM
Posted 16 February 2017 - 12:11 PM
No real top-tier options out there in FA or the draft.
Posted 16 February 2017 - 04:13 PM
Not sure he ever was an effective player. Most of his best hits came after the whistle blew.
Posted 16 February 2017 - 07:42 PM
And oh yeah....get a QB...which I've been saying incessantly since 2010.