Kearse, who turned 29 in February, is coming off his most disappointing season in the NFL. He finished with only 37 receptions for 371 yards and a touchdown, as the New York Jets struggled for most of the season under rookie quarterback Sam Darnold. Kearse made $5 million in the final year of his contract.
He played 63 percent of the offensive snaps, second among the team’s wide receivers, but was an afterthought in the passing offense. At the end of the season, Kearse expressed his frustration, saying he “got put on the backburner” by then-offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates.
Kearse’s down year came as a surprise because he set career highs for catches (65) and yards (810) in 2017 under a different coordinator, John Morton. Kearse made a seamless transition to the Jets after arriving in a big trade at the conclusion of the 2017 preseason.
The Jets acquired Kearse and a 2018 second-round pick from the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson. The Jets later used that pick in a trade that eventually netted the team Darnold.
In Seattle, Kearse was best known for his clutch performances in the postseason. In 12 games, he made 31 catches for 493 yards and six touchdowns. His best moment was an acrobatic, 33-yard catch against the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLIX, which was overshadowed by Malcolm Butler’s game-saving, goal-line interception moments later.
ESPN’s Rich Cimini contributed to this report.
Source : ESPN