The NFL players narrowly voted to ratify a new collective bargaining agreement that guarantees them more revenue, more teams in the playoffs, and a 17-game regular season.
It also could guarantee the Jets a better receiving corps this year.
Now that the CBA has officially passed, NFL teams will no longer be able to use both the franchise and transition tag this offseason -- something they would've been able to do in the final year of the old CBA if the new one had been voted down. That's a particular problem for the Cowboys, who were reportedly considering tagging both quarterback Dak Prescott and receiver Amari Cooper.
Now they can't, which very likely means Cooper will shake free.
That could be beneficial for the Jets in multiple ways. For one, they desperately need help at receiver, and the 6-1, 225-pound Cooper would really be the only true No. 1 receiver on the market. He's coming off a 79-catch, 1,189-yard, eight-touchdown season. He's also turning only 26 in June, and would be a considerable upgrade over Robby Anderson.
Cooper, though, is going to look for Odell Beckham Jr.-like money, assuming the Cowboys don't tag him. It's possible he could end up with a contract worth $18-20 million per year, which might be too much for the Jets.
However, if there's another team willing to spend big money on a receiver, it helps the Jets if that team goes after Cooper instead of Anderson, who's also scheduled to be a free agent this week. The Jets would like to bring Anderson back, but would prefer a deal in the range of $10 million per season. Anderson is looking for more -- perhaps in the $13 million-per-year range -- so the Jets need his market to shrink as much as possible.
The presence of Cooper in the free-agent pool could do just that.
Clarity on Trumaine Johnson's cap hit
One other important way the CBA decision impacts the Jets: They have always been planning to cut CB Trumaine Johnson, but were waiting for CBA clarity to do it, because without a new CBA they were unable to designate him as a "June 1" cut. Now they can.
What's the difference? Cutting Johnson leaves $12 million in dead money on the Jets' cap. By designating him a "June 1" cut they can spread that hit out over two years -- $4 million in 2020 and another $8 million in 2021. Had the CBA vote failed, that "June 1" designation would have disappeared in the final year of the old CBA, meaning the entire $12 million would've hit the Jets this year.
Bottom line: They'll now have an extra $8 million in salary cap space to spend this season, and a little less in 2021.