The New York Jets ended a five-month contract dispute with quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick this week, when both sides finalized a one-year, $12 million deal.
According to ESPN, the contract includes another $3 million in incentives, which could boost the value to $15 million.
Apparently, the Jets increased their offer Wednesday (July 27) from $9 million to $12 million, and gave Fitzpatrick a decision: take the deal or the team would be “moving on.”
Both sides wanted the same thing, but just couldn’t come to terms on a deal. Fitzpatrick was not happy with the offer that long sat on the table — three years, $24 million, including a total guarantee of $16 million.
Now, with the deal nearly finalized, the Jets will have to create room under the salary cap — they only have $9.1 million in cap space — to make things official.
Fitzpatrick was shipped to New York last year in a trade with the Texans. As a starter, he has career record of 43-61-1 in 11 seasons with no playoff appearances. He was close to making the postseason slump last year, but a season-ending loss to the Buffalo Bills prevented it.
According to ESPN, the Jets view Fitzpatrick as a “bridge” quarterback, holding down the starting position until rookie Christian Hackenberg or second-year quarterback Bryce Petty are ready to take over. This contributed to the lenghty stalemate this offseason.
Geno Smith, who was replaced by Fitzpatrick last preseason, returns as back-up, while Hackenberg and Petty will compete for the No. 3 job.