Mike Maccagnan: Leonard Williams’s arrival doesn’t impact Mo Wilkerson

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The Jets weren’t expecting defensive lineman Leonard Williams to be available when they were on the board in the first round and they were more than happy to take the USC prospect with the sixth pick.

On Wednesday, General Manager Mike Maccagnan said that Williams was the pick was because he was too good to pass up and that “big picture” implications of the move weren’t on his mind. Those implications are mostly tied to defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson, who is in the final year of his contract, but Maccagnan said that there’s no direct correlation between Wilkerson’s future and Williams’s arrival.

“It’s a good situation,” Maccagnan said on ESPN Radio in New York. “My thing is this: It’s kind of up to Todd [Bowles] to best utilize his resources at that position. Going forward, it doesn’t really impact Mo directly in that sense.”

Maccagnan also reiterated that the team isn’t “actively shopping” Wilkerson in a trade, which works against the notion that Williams’s arrival is exclusive to Wilkerson’s future with the team. The Jets would be a lot less likely to shop Wilkerson actively, passively or anywhere in the middle without Williams on hand and the rookie’s arrival allows them to approach extension talks differently than they would have with a new wide receiver on the roster.

None of which means that Wilkerson’s heading off the team, of course. Without a big money quarterback on the roster, the Jets have cap room to spend across the board and they can use the franchise tag to keep Wilkerson around in the absence of a longer extension.

14 responses to “Mike Maccagnan: Leonard Williams’s arrival doesn’t impact Mo Wilkerson

  1. It might be nice to see how Williams does in the real NFL and not on paper. He wouldn’t be the first “can’t miss” draft choice to, well, under-perform expectations.

  2. There is literally no reason to not sign the guy –

    1. The Rams have about 20 mil+ more invested into their D-line than the Jets as we speak.

    2. Wilkerson is not going to cost 20 mil.

    3. Jets don’t have to pay Sheldon for 3-4 years depending on franchise tag use.

    4. Jets don’t have to pay Williams for 5-6 years depending on franchise tag use.

    5. If they do have to let someone walk – Damon “Snacks” Harrison is a great player but his strength is run stopping in a passing league. He doesn’t play on 3rd down. Let him sign with the Colts or someone else next year. With all that other talent all over the line all the Jets really need at NT is a big body to clog up the middle.

    6. It would practically be the Revis situation all over again not to sign Wilkerson and/or trade him and Woody Johnson and the Jets FO did everything to fix that mistake. They’re (hopefully) not gonna make it again.

  3. Wait, why wouldn’t you want Leonard in the middle and Mo rushing the edge?

  4. This defense will be monstrous.

    Can’t wait for September…

    Yeah, yeah. No QB blah blah, but you never know. With a new system favorable to Smith, you never know.

  5. Is it true that Brady is negotiating his suspension with the league to cover the games when he has to face the Jets’ D?

  6. I wouldn’t shop him either, get him a new deal.Great player in his prime.

    Why not have a murderer’s row up front? You’ve got Revis back there, and have invested alot to have him. Make it that much more worthwhile. The Jets can be the Seahawks of the Eeast, aside from QB of course. Combined with a D Minded coach, I wouldn’t want to play them.

    The AFC east is going to be a blast to watch this year, regardless of what ends up happening to the Pats.

  7. What’s scary about the Jets D-Line:

    Muhammed Wilkerson – 25 years old
    Sheldon Richardson – 24 years old
    Leonard Williams – 20 years old

    These guys haven’t even hit their prime yet.

  8. Not this year anyway. There is no rush to trade him even if they dont want to pay him. You can carry him and Williams this year and if you want to trade him next year to say move up to get a QB you can.

  9. If defensive talent equates to postseason success then the Jets (and the Rams) have no excuse not to be in the playoffs this year.

  10. Todd Bowles like to use DL and DBs for his D. Not big on LBs.

    Having a plethora of young defensive line talent is not a problem.

    Crazy thing is Williams has hyped up to be better than both Sheldon and Wilkerson. Mama!

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