Free Agency Update: New York Jets Cut Several Veterans

Jim McIsaac

The Jets released several veteran players today, including a past-his-prime pass rusher, a disappointing young tackle, and a veteran backup safety.

Pro Football Weekly just tweeted out the news about another team that is cutting several veteran players to open up some more space under the salary cap. This time, it's the New York Jets who are getting rid of a few players:

Cutting Pace will free up an estimated $8.56 million dollars against the cap, as he was owed a base salary of $5.81 million in 2013 along with roster and workout bonuses totaling $2.75 million. Pace had played in New York for the past five years as a pass-rushing outside linebacker, but has seen his skills diminishing severely recently. His sack numbers have decreased every year since 2009, and he only recorded three sacks in 16 games last season.

Eric Smith's contract frees up about $3 million for the Jets. Smith has been a key reserve and a versatile backup who has started at least two games in every season since his second year in 2007; however, he only started more than six games once, in 2011 when he started 14 in place of injured starter Brodney Pool.

Jason Smith came over in a trade from the Rams last season, and was almost a guaranteed cut - he was owed a roster bonus of a whopping $11.25 million if he remained on the Jets' roster on the first day of the 2013 league year. That's just absurd for a player who played in only two games last season.

Finally, Josh Baker was a rookie tight end in 2011, when he played in 11 games. He missed all of the 2012 season on injured reserve with a knee injury.

In total, these moves free up around $24 million in salary cap room for the Jets.

(All contract details courtesy of Spotrac.com.)

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