New York Jets Sign Wide Receiver Elijah Moore, Leaving Zach Wilson As Their Only Unsigned Draft Pick

And then there was one. 

The New York Jets signed second-round pick Elijah Moore on Wednesday night, leaving No. 2 overall pick Zach Wilson as the lone Jets draft selection still unsigned. Moore, a wide receiver from Mississippi, was selected with the 34th overall pick in the second round, one day after the Jets inked their other first-round selection, guard Alijah Vera-Tucker of USC. 

Vera-Tucker projects as the starting left guard. He was taken with the 14th overall selection after New York traded up to make the pick.  

Vera-Tucker’s deal is for four years, $15,885,034, per overthecap.com. His contract will count for $2,888,195 against the salary cap in 2021. Moore’s contract is for $8,940,422 over four years, and his deal counts for $1,625,531 against the cap this year. 

Moore impressed during the spring, albeit working against mostly inexperienced cornerbacks in New York’s very young secondary, and projects to be lining up both in the slot and as an outside receiver in the Jets’ offense. New York restructured veteran Jamison Crowder’s deal in June so that he would count for $6,352,941 against the cap, and it figures that he will be getting a lot of time in the slot. 

Thus, with those two in the fold, general manager Joe Douglas should be able to turn his attention to getting Wilson signed. Wilson is one of four first-rounders still unsigned, along with San Francisco quarterback Trey Lance (No. 3), Los Angeles Chargers tackle Rashawn Slater (No. 13) and Cleveland cornerback Greg Newsome II (No. 26). 

It is important for the Jets to get this settled quickly. The team began welcoming rookies to training camp Tuesday, even though practice won’t begin until next Wednesday, and veterans don’t report until next Tuesday.

The organization doesn’t want Wilson to miss any practice time, the way predecessor Sam Darnold did when he missed the first three days of his first camp as a rookie in 2018. Darnold’s representatives and the Jets were haggling over contract language then, much like Wilson’s reps and Douglas likely are now. (Remember, the actual money is slotted, so it’s more of a matter now of contract language and when and how the compensation is paid out.) 

According to Over The Cap, the Jets have $22,201,918 in available salary-cap space with Wilson still to be signed. Top overall pick Trevor Lawrence of Jacksonville’s contract counts for $6,689,725 against the Jaguars’ cap, and thus Wilson’s contract eventually will cost the Jets $6 million-plus against the 2021 cap.

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