Jets DL Sheldon Richardson is well aware of his situation in New York and referred to himself as the “odd man out.”
“Big business, bro,” he said. “It happens. That’s it. We’ve got three guys that play the same position. We’re all effective. It’s a surplus, so I’m the odd man out.”
After the Jets locked up Muhammad Wilkerson long-term, it became clear that they weren’t going to be able to pay another defensive lineman that kind of money, especially when they have former first-round pick Leonard Williams.
“I just want to play, and yeah, get paid my fair share,” he said. “You can’t do this forever. You want to win Super Bowls and win games and stuff like that. But you also want to make sure you can take care of your family when it’s all said and done and it’s over with.”
Before the trade deadline, Todd Archer of ESPN reported that the Jets had contacted a number of teams about a potential deal involving Richardson including the Cowboys.
Other reports said that the Jets “actively shopping” him before the deadline but New York ultimately elected to hold onto Richardson after it was clear that their asking price wouldn’t be met. This sets up an interesting situation between the Jets and Richardson next year, as it would make plenty of sense for them to make him available for trade.
Richardson, 25, is a former first-round pick of the Jets back in 2013. He’s currently in the fourth year of his four-year, $10.054 million rookie contract and stands to make a base salary of $1.776 million for the 2016 season.
The Jets elected to pick up Richardson’s fifth-year option a few months ago, which means he’s under team control through the 2017 season and will make a bases salary of $8.069 million.
In 2016, Richardson has appeared in six games and recorded 28 tackles, 1.5 sacks, and a fumble recovery for the Jets. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 12 edge defender out of 102 qualifying players.