Cromartie wants to retire a Jet; what would a contract look like for him to do so?

Antonio Cromartie has been fielding a lot of questions on his future with the Jets and was even hit up by TMZ on Monday at the Rose Bowl. A $5 million bonus is due in March and conventional wisdom would say that the Jets will cut him before that comes due. Cromartie wants to remain in New York, but with a salary cap impasse looming, how will both sides proceed after a projected cut?

NFL: New Orleans Saints at New York JetsWhen the Jets set up Cromartie’s four-year deal in 2011, it was structured in such a way that it would protect the Jets should Cromartie’s play diminish quickly. Did we just witness the Jets concerns coming true in 2013? Or was that just an aberration?

Cromartie has been adamant that he wants to retire a Jet, but with a down season in 2013 due to the substantial injuries he played through, coming back will be on terms favorable to the Jets. The Jets will know the true story on Cromartie’s injury situation, but will it matter to John Idzik at the bargaining table? The Jets are going to want to protect themselves financially in 2014 if they continue on with Cro, now that he’s going to be north of 30.

We spoke with our own cap experts, Bent as well as the estimable Jason Fitzgerald from OverTheCap.com.  

Here’s two options for the Jets should they choose to move forward with Antonio Cromartie.

One Year Deal: The quickest way to triangulate what Cromartie’s value on a one-year might be for the Jets in 2014 will be the Brent Grimes deal in 2013 with the Dolphins. Cro & Grimes situations are similar, as they are both former Pro Bowl players dealing with an injury in the season prior. Grimes was 30 when he signed the deal (same as Cro will be). Grimes received a $5.5 million deal, with $2.25 million in signing bonus, $750,000 in salary guarantees and another $500,000 tied to being active on gameday. Grimes was an unfamiliar entity to the Dolphins, who were spending profligately to get better in 2013.

The Money: If Cromartie is looking to maximize his payday, he is going to have to prove to other teams that he was playing through serious injury and it impacted his play. The Jets of course will know the truth of the matter but expect a one-year deal to wind up in the $2.0 million to $4.0 million range.

Three Year Deal: Much of the logic remains the same except that there’s a longer term investment, which might mean less upfront and few guarantees. A lot of what Cromartie might get from the Jets will depend on the demand in the cornerback market. Grimes will be a free agent again and Alterraun Verner should be the measuring stick for this class.

The Money: If good players coming off initial deals are signing long term deals at $5 million, then Cromartie is going to have to take much less, maybe even minimum levels. But if guys like Alterraun Verner end up averaging more than $10 million per season, then Cromartie probably comes in between $4.0 and $5.0 million. Asante Samuel’s deal from 2012  might be a good measure. The cornerback market was hot and Samuel got a $2.25 mil bonus in his first year, which was the only guarantee, and then there were about $1 million tied to gameday activity bonuses with a non-guaranteed base of $1.25 mil. Over the next two years, the average per year rose with higher salaries, roster bonuses and escalator clauses. This is the likely kind of multi-year deal the Jets might do with Cromartie. A three year deal with $4.5 million or so per year with just the first year guaranteed and plenty of playtime bonuses and a backloaded salary.




89 comments
nesboogie
nesboogie

SIgn either grimes, vontae, or verner.

Brendan
Brendan

@nesboogie You also have Talib, Cro and Munnerlyn in the group. Not even saying I'd want them more than the guys you listed, but more good CB's is good if your team is looking to sign a CB. 

juunit
juunit

Grimes. He's grimey. 'Nuff said.

Brendan
Brendan

@juunit Before his injury derailed everything, there were legitimate "Revis or Grimes?" discussions. 


When he's healthy, there are few that can play to Grimes' level. 

jma020
jma020

@juunit Normally comments followed by "Nuff said", haven't said nearly enough.

BDarc23
BDarc23

@Brendan @juunit  I am assuming you must be talking about PFF ratings or something because I find it hard to believe anyone thought Grimes was legitimately better than Revis 2010/2011.

juunit
juunit

@Brendan@juunit 

'Phins fired Sherman, so obviously the landscape in Miami is going to change a lot before next season. I think there's a real chance Grimes tests free agency. If he does, he should be priority #1.

Brendan
Brendan

@juunit I think it goes without saying he'll test the waters. The Phins gave him a "show me" deal, he showed everyone, it's time for him to collect. 

Brendan
Brendan

@BDarc23 If people wouldn't entertain that discussion in 2010/11 than they were either Jet homers or Falcon haters. Grimes was stellar those two years, even with '11 shortened by injury he was the 3rd ranked CB on PFF. 

Brendan
Brendan

@BDarc23 In 2009 & 2010 it was at least new so people thought it wasn't legitimate. But when his name was mentioned in the same breath as Revis' people got all huffy (I'm sure I was among them). 


It's something to consider, where Grimes would be in terms of status around the league if he didn't lose an entire year at his absolute peak. 

Brendan
Brendan

@juunit Really? You think he wouldn't at least talk to some teams? I think he would be stupid not to, unless the Phins blew him away with an offer. 

BDarc23
BDarc23

@Brendan @BDarc23 I think it is really hard to rate these CBs... guys like Cro and Talib were acquired for late picks and Grimes wasn't exactly beating off suitors with a stick last off season but they turn around and have great years.  Meanwhile Asomogha signs a huge deal and is horrible

dabronx
dabronx

@jake100 

Agreed! He seems to run a tight ship. Looking forward to see what the Jets do in free agency and the draft. 

BDarc23
BDarc23

@jake100 @dabronx He really hasn't done much yet..let's hope he is as good as you think

djf1
djf1

Is TJB going to do a dump - or - keep series on the current roster?

jroc
jroc

In regards to the Rose Bowl, how great would it be to have #8 on Auburn, Cassanova McKinzy, playing across Coples? That guy would be great in Rex's system.

dabronx
dabronx

Cromartie is still a servicible CB. However, he will be 30 next year and we need to look for a longer term solution. I would not take Cromartie off the table. However, if a more productive, younger, long term CB solution hits free agency, I would fiercely chase the opportunity to sign him - Alterraun Verner - he is only 25. He will prob demand close to 10M. If we can get him for 8 or under, I would snag him. 

Regradless, Cromartie wouldn't even be my first option for CBs who are 30 or over. If we can't sign a young long term shutdown corner, I would prefer Grimes over Cromartie. He would be more expensive than Cromartie for a year but at least he has proven he still has some juice left in his tank - Grimes is a 2013 Pro-Bowler.

     

Brendan
Brendan

@dabronx Nice post, you hit it on the head. If the team ends up with Cro, that's fine, but there are other options out there that the team shouldn't close itself off to. 


The only way I'd endorse something like that is if Cro took a legitimate hometown discount and the Jets were able to allocate CB $ elsewhere over the next few years. 

levi
levi

If they do let Cro go do we really need to sign a FA? Walls, Lankster and hopefully Aaron Berry comes back healthy. I think all of those guys could do well with more play time.

Bent
Bent

@levi Lankster himself is an RFA.

levi
levi

@Bent I wasnt aware of that but he should be cheap and Im sure they want him back if for nothing more than STs. I know you agree with me that he deserves more play time though.

Richard Troy jr
Richard Troy jr

They should try to go and get Captain Munnerlyn if the price is right or even a  Javier Arenas.  I think Arenas can also help in the return game as well.  Munnerlyn would probably be a starter as for Arenas he can play that nickel spot.  Time for Wilson to grow up and win that starting job and play opposite Milner and when Arenas checks in he goes onto the slot corner

dabronx
dabronx

Captain Munnerlyn is pretty damn good. If we can get him at a good price, it would be a steal.

Ceifus Hornswoggle
Ceifus Hornswoggle

He should lose $250,000 every time he gets burned on a deep ball.

Bent
Bent

@levi @Ceifus Hornswoggle Wouldn't committing a penalty whilst getting burned on a deep ball still constitute "getting burned on a deep ball"?


I'll have to consult the CBA.

Bent
Bent

It was rumored in March that the Jets were going to sign Schwartz.

Brendan
Brendan

@Bent His PFF grades on a per-play basis have to be near the top in the NFL, no? 

Bent
Bent

@Brendan @Bent Reitz is interesting too.  Restricted free agent.  Don't know much about him, but that stat and looking at the improvement in his grades this year has piqued my interest.

Brendan
Brendan

@Bent @Brendan Color me intrigued. Ex-NCAA basketball player, never played football, was signed with the intent to play TE, but was groomed for OL instead....

Bent
Bent

Maybe 2-3m?

Bent
Bent

@jaygo @Brendan @Bent 


It's pretty easy to be middle of the pack when you don't play any snaps on offense and end up with a 0.0 grade as a result!

Bent
Bent

@a57se @Bent Schwartz hasn't established himself as a top guard though.  He played well in Minnesota, then got hurt.  With the Chiefs he wasn't even a starter until he filled in for Asomoah and did a great job (hence the great grades).


Half a season of great play doesn't make you a great guard, just like half a season of competent play didn't make Wayne Hunter a competent tackle.

karlhungus
karlhungus

@Bent  Then the Schwartz would truly be with us........ behold the power of the Schwartz!

Bent
Bent

@Brendan @Bent For guys with over 100 snaps at guard the list goes like this:


1. Andrew Whitworth (played inside from w13 onwards)

2. Evan Mathis (the overall leader)

3. Joe Reitz of Indianapolis (only started one game)

4. Schwartz

Bytor
Bytor

Heart says get him. I love how he's played as well as CroCamp. Brain says he'll be 30 with hip problems. Lock up a young guy while we have some cap space. Question is can you live with 2013 Cro at $2MM? $4MM?

BILLY
BILLY

3 years that totals $12-15 million over the course of the contract. 

nesboogie
nesboogie

Sign cro to the vet min. If he says no, let him walk and sign a better CB.

levi
levi

@nesboogie He would probably punch someone in the face for insulting him with the offer.

Brendan
Brendan

@nesboogie The vet minimum? 


The lack of respect Cro gets from Jets is staggering to me. 

levi
levi

@Brendan I wasnt serious. I was blowing it waaaaaay out of proportion to illustrate how insulting that is to Cro.

Brendan
Brendan

@levi Ah, okay. Should've known better with it being you, but you never know who is harboring some deep-seeded hate for Cro for no reason. My bad. 

levi
levi

@Brendan Nah, I like Cro and hope he can bounce back for whoever he plays for. Unless its the Pats. Speaking of which, I would like Talib in green n white.