How Marcus Maye’s season-ending injury impacts him and the Jets

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Marcus Maye is done for the season after suffering a torn Achilles against the Colts on Thursday Night Football.

The injury could not have come at a worse time for Maye and the Jets. New York held onto Maye at the trade deadline last week despite his future in the Big Apple looking bleak after contract extension negotiations went awry last summer. Now the Jets will be without the anchor of their secondary and Maye is left in a tough spot entering free agency.

Here is a deeper look at the short and long-term impact of Maye’s season-ending injury.

Jets are in trouble at safety

AP Photo/Corey Sipkin

New York’s secondary took a hit when Lamarcus Joyner went down with a season-ending injury in Week 1. Now it is without its best player.

\Ashtyn Davis was not good against the Colts — regardless of what Pro Football Focus says — and has not played all that well this season. He is now the “best” healthy safety the Jets have. Sharrod Neasman is in line for a lot more playing time now, but he’s nothing more than a solid special teamer. New York’s struggling defense could not afford to lose Maye. Now it will have to figure out how to live without him for the rest of the season.

Maye's value takes a major hit

Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

A torn Achilles is one of the toughest injuries to come back from and is not something you want to be dealing with when you are trying to maximize your value on the open market. That is now the situation Maye is faced with, as he is set to hit free agency fresh off a serious leg injury. Maye doesn’t have the same kind of financial security as Carl Lawson, who ruptured his Achilles in training camp. He’ll have to find a contract to his liking while teams negotiate knowing he likely won’t be ready for the start of the 2022 season.

Maye has a DUI charge, and thus potential league discipline, hanging over his head as well.

Jeff Ulbrich's job gets a whole lot harder

Photo by Dustin Satloff/Getty Images

The Jets don’t have much elite-level talent on their defense. Quinnen Williams fits that profile and Maye was the next closest thing, although he was struggling prior to his injury. Losing Maye throws a major wrench in Ulbrich’s plans for New York’s defense.

The Jets have allowed a mind-boggling 130 points in their last three games and that was with Maye on the field for most of that span. How will they manage without, at the very least, his presence on the back end of the secondary? Ulbrich is going to have to find a way to cook something up, or else his defense is going to keep getting shredded.

Possible reunion?

Joe Scarnici, Getty

Contract negotiations between the Jets and Maye’s agent failed because Joe Douglas did not value Maye at his asking price — a common theme for the GM when dealing with in-house free agents. Maye’s value has now plummeted and New York might have a chance to retain him if it wants to. Maye said before the trade deadline that he did not want to be dealt. Would he want to join a new organization while rehabbing his Achilles injury? Not only would he be dealing with a new coaching staff and scheme to learn, but also a training staff that doesn’t know his body as well as the team that drafted him.

Robert Saleh is clearly a fan of Maye. He constantly raves about him from an on- and off-the-field perspective. Maybe a reunion on a short-term, low-risk, high-reward deal can realistically happen now — even if an injury is the driving force behind it.

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