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Examining Jets’ Possible Replacements for Trumaine Johnson

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The New York Jets have informed cornerback Trumaine Johnson that he will be cut in the coming days, according to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. Johnson’s $11 million salary for 2020 becomes guaranteed on March 20, so the Jets will have to cut him before then.

Whether a new collective bargaining agreement gets passed or not will affect this decision. With a new CBA, the Jets could designate Johnson as a June 1 cut and his salary cap hit would be spread over the 2020 and 2021 seasons, according to Rich Cimini of ESPN. If the new CBA doesn’t get passed, the Jets would incur all of Johnson’s $12 million cap hit in 2020. The Jets would save $3 million if that happens.

Johnson signed a five-year, $72.5 million contract with the Jets in 2018. However, he was one of the worst signings that the Jets have made. In 2018, he missed five games with strained quadriceps and was scratched from the final game of 2018 for violating team rules. Last year, he missed nine games due to two ankle sprains. Overall, Johnson played in just 17 games for the Jets and had five interceptions with one returned for a touchdown, plus seven pass breakups.

Finding Johnson’s replacement is now the Jets’ top priority. Gang Green has shown interest in Byron Jones and James Bradberry with the Jets seeming to like Bradberry more, according to Ralph Vacchiano of SNY. Chris Harris is another option.

Byron Jones

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Jones would be a good choice to be Johnson’s replacement. He has had good seasons in consecutive years and made his first Pro Bowl in 2018. Jones had 46 combined tackles and six passes defended last year.

James Bradberry

Bradberry is one of the top cornerbacks in free agency as he is being pursued by more than 20 teams, according to Alaina Getzenberg of the Charlotte Observer. Last year, he had 65 tackles (51 solo tackles), one sack, and three interceptions.

Chris Harris

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Harris would also be a good replacement for Johnson. He is a four-time Pro Bowler and a three-time All-Pro.

Jones and Bradberry are looking for contracts worth at least $15 million while Harris would be a little cheaper than the other two. Still, the Jets will probably try to get Bradberry. If they don’t get Bradberry, they will likely go with Harris.

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