It is fairly obvious that the New York Jets need some extra offensive weapons if they want to compete in the AFC East. With the resurrection of the Miami Dolphins and the continued dominance of the Patriots atop the division, Gang Green will need some much needed help to stay relevant. The Jets front office has been linked with potential free agents such as Eric Decker in recent weeks, but one player that can benefit the team most is Jeremy Maclin.
Maclin is coming off a knee procedure that caused him to miss all of last year. His absence from the field may cause concerns for other potential suitors, resulting in a cheaper asking price. If the Green and White can bring in the former first round pick out of Missouri, they will be adding a great target for the offense. His 6-foot, 200 pound frame is decent for an NFL receiver, but his speed and agility in and out of routes creates much needed separation between him and the defender. Also, he has sufficient hands, especially while in traffic, making him an even better fit for the West Coast system. With his skills and speed, he has the potential to be the No. 1 receiver for Gang Green, despite coming off ACL surgery.
Maclin is only 25 and sustaining a knee injury is not career-ending for him. He still has many productive years ahead of him; allowing the Jets to sign him to a multi-year deal. Similarly to Darrelle Revis' contract situation last season, the Jets can sign Maclin to a mostly incentive-based contract without any guaranteed money. By doing so, they can limit the financial risk of signing Maclin if he re-injures the surgically repaired knee. Maclin can be a huge asset to the Jets as he has great playmaking ability. He poses a great threat to opposing defenses, while drawing close attention of the corners and safeties, and can open up other receivers.
The current Philadelphia Eagle is also a great person to have in the locker room. With five seasons under his belt, he can offer guidance to the younger players on the Jets. His name has rarely been linked to negative media attention, and he does a lot of community service around the local area. The star receiver runs a Philadelphia/New Jersey based football camp each year, where he not only teaches his young players about football, he emphasizes leadership and education as well.
Signing Maclin to a multi-year, incentive based contract would be ideal for New York. His great fit into the West Coast system and within the locker room full of younger players can greatly benefit the Jets. He would also bring good media attention, through his community service and his willingness to help others. Maclin would have the opportunity for his first 1,000-plus yard season with the Jets, as well as being a number one receiver for the first time of his career.