Jets to Trade for Brandon Marshall

According to a number of different reporters the Jets will be trading a mid round draft pick to acquire Brandon Marshall from the Chicago Bears. My assumption is that the pick will be a 5th rounder since the Jets 4th and 6th round picks will technically be tied up in the Percy Harvin trade from last season through the NFL draft.

Marshall is a very accomplished receiver that had posted seven 1,000 yard seasons in a row before falling to just 721 last season as he struggled with injuries and an ineffective offense. Marshall is 31 years old and should be able to produce for at least two more years at the 1,000 yard level, provided he stays healthy. The Jets will take on $7.7 million in salary for Marshall this year. His 2016 and 2017 salaries of $8.1 and $8.5 million are non-guaranteed, meaning that if the 700 yard season was a sign of things to come he can be released without future salary cap implications. Neither side should push to rework the contract given that Marshall was just signed in 2014.

The Bears had signed Marshall to a contract extension last year that paid him a $7.5 million signing bonus and $7.5 million salary. The team ended up getting just one year for $15 million, essentially as if he was a franchise player, so from that perspective the extension was a disaster for the Bears. The Bears will now carry $5.625 million in dead money for Marshall this season, but that will allow them to create another $3.95 million in cap room. For Chicago this is probably a sign of the lack of faith that the new regime has in the roster that was constructed by former GM Phil Emery and they will be looking to turn over as many veteran pieces as possible.

This move should signal the end of Harvin’s brief tenure with the Jets last season. Harvin was acquired in the middle of the season when then GM John Idzik was getting hammered in the press for not being proactive in his approach to help the team. Harvin was highly overpaid by the Seahawks and had been overvalued for some time around NFL circles. With the Jets already having Eric Decker, Jeremy Kerley and Jace Amaro under contract, Harvin should be the odd man out.

Harvin was set to earn $10.5 million this season and he would need to bring that number down if he wanted to stay. Reports were that he balked at such a move and this trade would seem to indicate that the Jets realized it was time to move on. Marshall is not only more productive but also cheaper. Last season Harvin did not reach 500 receiving yards. He will likely struggle to earn $6 million a year if he is released.

The trade can not be official until March 10, which likely means the Jets would not make a move with  Harvin until that date. We will not update any of the cap charts to reflect the trade until it is actually official with the NFL.

  • buk

    Great move for the Jets. Allows Jets to move on from Harvin and avoid getting into a bidding war for WR when free agency hits. It also allows them to move release Marshall next year if Jets Draft WR Cooper or White and they develop in yr 1.
    If Marshall plays anywhere near his productive career stats it is an instant fit. It also highlights yet again the disaster of Idzik’s plan. Too many players like Harvin and Chris Johnson which were poor fits in this roster. The extension to Kerley makes no sense because even if Harvin agreed to a paycut the slot would be best position for him to play. Given Kerley’s lack of production vs similar priced players like Edelman or even rookie like Jarvis Landry he would not be in high demand if he were a free agent.
    Now the Jets are faced with brining back Revis and Cro who Idzik had no interest in a year ago or wildly overpaying in FA to acquire a CB we did not bring in last year. If nothing else Idzik should have gotten Wilkerson deal done. The salary cap rising20mil+ in 2yrs and the Suh signing will only increase what Mo is looking for.

    • Jim

      No Cromartie!!

      • buk

        Look we have McDougle and Milliner coming off season ending injury, Kyle Wilson is gone and a bunch of nobodies. Revis will ask for moon and Maxwell we’ll have to overpay Maxwell to choose Jets over the Eagles. As Jet fans I think we have to trust Bowles on whether Cro can still play. Cro wants to be here, you can get him on a short term deal and if needed I think he could slide over to deep safety which is another gaping question mark for us. Before we say no we need to bring in several starter caliber corners.

  • Jim

    Wow! If he is not a problem child in the locker room (played under Bowles in Miami, he at least knows what he’s getting himself into), it’s a major win for NY. Now they can cut Harvin, don’t have to draft a WR at #6 and don’t have future guaranteed money tied to the position like they would with an upper end FA WR. He’s probably the best blocking WR in the NFL as well.

    Jets fans should like this. Long-term deal for Wilkerson and Harrison, sign Spiller, a good OG (Franklin, or the guy from SF), CB (Jackson or Culliver?) in free agency, draft Mariota at #6 (?!?!), and I think the team actually has a future.

  • McGeorge

    I’ll sure miss Harvin ;-)

    I’m ok with this for a 5th round pick.
    If he plays ok, maybe they can rework his salary next year.

  • Tyler Ferree

    I love this move, Marshall’s locker room rant was blow WAY out of proportion, he was trying to fill a leadership void and the rest of the team threw it back in his face, and unfortunately for him the media was right outside. The Jets get a true #1 reciever for #2 money this year, and low end #1 money the following 2 and then save 3 million against the cap to boot by cutting harvin. This is the closest the offense has been to being stacked since 2010, just need to address the right side of the line and get improvement under center (and I don’t think its out of the question for that improvement to come from Geno). The Defense still needs work, Inside Linebacker, Outside Linebacker, Cornerback, and Free Safety all need to be upgraded, but the offense is looking the best its been in 5 years.

  • buk

    Wow… Jets signed Harris for 3yr 21.5 mil contract with 15mil guaranteed. That’s a rich rich contract for a 31yr old and I was in favor of bringing Harris back but not at that price

    • Tyler Ferree

      They overpaid by about 50% that was the deal i was expecting the bills to give him.

      • buk

        Another example of Idzik who was taking his sweet time on extending Harris coming back to bite us. The Jets did this for 3 reasons imo. a)Keep Harris away from Tannenbaum and Rex in Miami and Buffalo b) Jets have no depth at linebacker c) Harris gets a premium for being a lifelong Jet. Don’t have to like it but it makes sense and Jets have more than enough room that this won’t hurt them.
        What this deal does signal is an even bigger payday for Wilkerson than some might be expecting

        • Tyler Ferree

          Those aren’t good reasons though, he’s terrible in coverage and his stop/stuff rates are low enough that he’s not really that good a runstuffer either. He’s a 4-5 million dollar player who for the second time in as many contracts has been badly overpaid.

    • McGeorge

      I agree with you. I think they should have paid less.
      However , it’s really a 2 year 15MM contract.
      He wont be productive at that level in 3 years.

  • Brian

    As a Bears fan who watched and closely followed Marshall the last few years, here’s the rundown:

    -Plays hard, plays hurt, plays well
    -Good blocker, good catch radius, usually doesn’t drop easy passes
    -Frequently has games where he just dominates by catching everything in sight (if the ball is getting out to him, of course)

    -Widely reported locker room problem, usually starts out all roses and sunshine but quickly wears out his welcome (as evidenced by this being his third time being traded…)
    -If passes aren’t coming his way, will pout and seems to affect his play (not 100% of the time, but I witnessed a handful of games where Cutler was struggling and Marshall seemed to pack it in before halftime, mostly in this past year which was a total mess for the Bears, so take that with a grain of salt)

    Basically, if the Jets solve their QB issues in some form, and the offense allows Marshall to be featured to his liking, you’ll probably get the last good year or two out of him and he’ll be gone before the locker room stuff comes into play.

    Either way, for a fifth-round pick, it’s a good gamble. Good trade for NYJ.

  • David Powell

    Hate this move as a Bears fan. Marshall has been legit since he sought out help. As for calling Cutler out for poor play and turnovers: that’s the sign of a teammate and a player that cares. Hellen Keller could tell Cutler was doing poorly. Marshall called dung ‘dung’ behind closed doors but he’s hated for it? He didn’t do it TO style to the media. He said the obvious: You, Jay, are causing us to lose games. It’s ok for team officers and coaches to call out a player, but not a player’s best friend behind closed doors? That’s competition. It’s a weird blurred line where players are applauded for holding teammates accountable, and then some are attacked for calling out bad play. For a little over $3 million in cap relief, this is a weak move based off of Marshall’s old baggage and injuries that he tried to play through.