After the Jets took care of the quarterback position on a busy day in free agency, they came to terms with three potential starters, according to multiple sources, highlighted by cornerback Trumaine Johnson.
Johnson spent the last six seasons with the St. Louis/Los Angeles Rams, totaling 18 career interceptions and breaking up 24 passes the last two seasons. The Rams franchised Johnson the last two years and eventually let him hit the open market. Financial terms were not available, but NFL Network reported Johnson will receive an average salary of $15 million a season.
The Jets also replaced their leading tackler from 2017, Demario Davis, as a source confirmed they reached an agreement with inside linebacker Avery Williamson. After Matt Forte retired last month, the Jets were seeking a starting running back and found one in Isaiah Crowell, 25, the former Brown.
Johnson most likely will replace Morris Claiborne, who started 15 games last season. Jets officials would like to bring Claiborne back, but it depends on the price. As it stands, Buster Skrine and Johnson will start at cornerback, with the goal of finding another outside corner. In the nickel package, Skrine usually covers the slot receiver.
Jets vice president of player personnel Brian Heimerdinger is familiar with Johnson, as he was his position coach with the Rams.
Williamson, 26, had 52 tackles and three interceptions for the Titans last season. A durable player, he hasn’t missed a game the last two seasons. After failing to reach an agreement on a contract with the Titans, Williams decided to test the market and found the Jets the best fit. The Dolphins also expressed interest in Williamson.
In 16 starts for the Browns in 2017, Crowell gained 853 yards on a career-high 206 carries (4.1 average). Crowell could move into the starting role over Bilal Powell, who led the Jets with 772 rushing yards. Powell, who turns 30 Oct. 27, did have five touchdowns, but the Jets want to get younger. The Jets also have 23-year-old Elijah McGuire.
Report: Wilkerson to join Packers. Former Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson, who took numerous visits, agreed to terms on a one-year deal with the Packers, ESPN reported. Wilkerson was suspended one game for being late to a team meeting and spent the last three weeks of the year inactive. Wilkerson was the Jets’ highest-paid player and was released to save $11 million against the salary cap.