Jamison Crowder TD vs Bills
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Two of the Jets players likely to draw the most interest before the NFL trading deadline on Tuesday might be two players the Jets can’t afford to deal.
As contenders scrounge for offensive help for the stretch, Jets receivers Jamison Crowder and Denzel Mims have emerged as hot names on the market, according to multiple NFL sources. But there is considerable skepticism about whether the Jets would be willing to deal either one of them, given the current state of their offense and how it might affect rookie quarterback Zach Wilson.
If they do decide to at least listen, there are several teams shopping for receiver help, sources said, including the Green Bay Packers and the New Orleans Saints. However, there is also a glut of receivers potentially available, meaning the prices for any of them may not turn out to be high.
The Jets may not be inclined to deal a receiver anyway. The issue for the Jets, one league source said, is they need to keep as many weapons around Wilson as possible for when he returns from a knee injury that is expected to keep him out 2-4 games. He’s struggled through the first six games of the season, and now No. 1 receiver Corey Davis is out with a hip injury, too.
Even though Mims, the Jets’ second-round pick from a year ago, has clearly fallen out of favor with this new coaching staff, Crowder figures to be the more likely of the two to be dealt if the Jets make a deal. He would’ve been cut in the offseason if he hadn’t accepted a massive pay cut, from $10 million to a salary of $5 million. He also missed the first three games of the season with a groin injury, which opened a door for rookie receiver Elijah Moore.
In theory, the Jets could trade Crowder and simply plug Moore into his spot in the slot. But so far, even in Crowder’s absence, Moore hasn’t taken advantage of his opportunities, catching just nine passes for 79 yards in five games with several big drops before Sunday’s game. The 28-year-old Crowder, meanwhile, has 15 catches for 119 yards and one touchdown in his three games, making him one of the Jets’ best and most reliable receivers – and one who may not be so easily replaced.
As for Mims, it’s been a frustrating and bizarre season. He has four catches for 79 yards while playing only 41 snaps over four games before Sunday when, with Davis out, he was expected to have a much bigger role against the Cincinnati Bengals. He fell far behind his teammates this spring and summer after serious bout of food poisoning that caused him to lose 20 pounds. And after that, he was slow to learn the new offense, which left him buried on the depth chart.
Still, according to a source, the Jets see the value in the 6-3, 207-pounder with 4.5 speed and aren’t actively looking to get rid of him just one year after taking him with the 59th overall pick in the draft.
They likely will get calls about both of them over the next few days, though. Those calls just might not last very long.