New York Jets: 3 Players who won’t be back in 2021

Quarterback Sam Darnold #14 of the New York Jets (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)
Quarterback Sam Darnold #14 of the New York Jets (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images) /

The New York Jets have begun the process of resetting their franchise for a total rebuild, so which players won’t be returning to the team in 2021?

The New York Jets are beginning to make changes within the organization ahead of the 2021 NFL season as they look towards long-awaited success. With a new coaching staff led by a much-desired head coaching candidate, Robert Saleh, New York will know that this is only the beginning of the offseason process.

Gang Green will attempt to improve from a 2-14 record to a playoff-hopeful team. It is a big ask for the Jets and they will know just how vital this offseason will be for hopes of rebuilding, not only to win more in 2021 but to establish long-term success as well. However, changes in the coaching staff are not the only change to be made before next season; changes to the roster must also occur in order for the rebuild to occur.

Here are three players who will not be wearing Gotham Green when the 2021 season kicks off.

New York Jets cut candidate No. 3: Breshad Perriman, WR

Breshad Perriman did not have his finest season with the Jets. After Robby Anderson’s departure to Carolina, Perriman was brought in via free agency to be his replacement. He finished the season with 505 yards and three touchdowns after starting 12 games. This was an underwhelming performance from Sam Darnold’s supposed WR1 and was constantly outplayed throughout the season by Jamison Crowder.

After that season, Perriman will not be back in 2021 as he took up just under $6.5 million in cap space, per Spotrac, for little return. Simply, he didn’t earn a contract extension. The wide receiver position is one that the Jets will pursue through the draft and free agency as they look to find their WR1 and a partner for Denzel Mims on the heels of his rookie season.

New York Jets cut candidate No. 2: Henry Anderson, DE

After arriving from Indianapolis in 2018, Anderson had an instant impact on the Jets defense and came up with 7.0 sacks. This enabled him to secure a spot at number three on New York’s highest-paid players. However, despite a cap hit of just over $9.5 million, per Spotrac, Anderson has failed to live up to his value and has produced only 1.5 sacks since.

This is a player that the Jets must cut ties with this offseason. With a large amount of projected cap space going forward and with an abundance of talent in free agency, the Jets could use the extra money from this cut to target players who could provide them with far more production than Anderson has given them.

New York Jets cut candidate No. 1: Sam Darnold, QB

The fairy tale in the minds of Jets fans where Sam Darnold revives this franchise has sadly died. It seems his time in the Big Apple is all but over and it has been a tough journey for the 23-year-old along the way. Poor coaching and a sub-par supporting cast have left him with a nine-touchdown, 11-interception season in 2020, an immense regression from both his first and second years.

Despite a lot of the blame falling on the way the Jets surrounded him, he was the master of his own downfall in many instances. He made countless immature — from a football standpoint — decisions, throwing half-blind off his back foot with the hope of a receiver managing to cling onto it in addition to failing to see wide-open receivers downfield and taking unnecessary sacks where he has had all the time in the world to throw the ball away.

These errors cannot be pinned on other members of the roster or coaching staff. These are mistakes that a rookie quarterback would be frustrated with, let alone one in their third year.

Next. 2021 NFL Mock Draft: Post-Super Bowl 3-round mock. dark

Yes, he has his faults but Darnold has the skill set to develop into a productive quarterback elsewhere. After all, he is only 23 and has shown glimpses of fantastic improvisation and ability to throw on the run. Nevertheless, it is time to move on. The Jets must seek to trade Darnold this offseason and take the opportunity of selecting a quarterback at No. 2 overall.