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Chiefs Release WR Maclin; Should The Jets Be Interested?

Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Chiefs have released wide receiver Jeremy Maclin in a move to clear up some much needed salary cap space. Should the Jets be interested in signing Maclin?

Jeremy Maclin is a 29 year old, 6' 0", 200 pound wide receiver out of the University of Missouri. Maclin was drafted in the first round of the 2009 NFL draft by the Philadelphia Eagles. He played his first 6 seasons with the Eagles before moving on to the Kansas City Chiefs in 2015. With the Eagles Maclin was a steady performer, with four seasons over 850 receiving yards, and a Pro Bowl season in 2014 when he caught 85 passes for 1318 yards and 10 touchdowns. Maclin continued his success in 2015 with his new Chiefs teammates, amassing a career high 87 receptions for 1088 yards and eight touchdowns. 2016 was a down year for Maclin, as he regressed to just 44 catches for 536 yards and two touchdowns.

Maclin's down year in 2016 was a result of a number of factors. Tight end Travis Kelce had a breakout year, emerging as the Chiefs #1 threat and one of the best receiving tight ends in the NFL. Tyreek Hill emerged as a breakout star in his rookie season, and Chris Conley also made great progress in his second season. This gave the Chiefs four legitimate targets and too many mouths to feed for Maclin to continue getting a huge number of targets. Perhaps the biggest factor in Maclin's 2016 decline, however, was a groin injury suffered in the eighth game of the season. Maclin did not return until the 13th game, and he never looked completely healthy thereafter. Had Maclin not gotten injured it is likely he would have put up another season somewhere in the range of 800 to 900 yards, even with more mouths to feed in the Chiefs offense.

Jeremy Maclin is now 29 years old. He likely has at least three, maybe four good years left before he begins to suffer substantial age related decline. Maclin is a far more accomplished receiver than anyone on the Jets roster other than Eric Decker. There is little doubt Maclin would upgrade the Jets receiving unit. However, the Jets have a bevy of young receivers they are trying to develop, and acquiring Maclin would mean, if everyone is healthy, none of the young receivers other than Quincy Enunwa would likely see very many targets in 2017.

A receiving unit featuring Eric Decker, Quincy Enunwa and Jeremy Maclin would be fairly formidable. It would also aid in the development of the young quarterbacks, as they could count on Decker and Maclin running precise routes and being in the right place at the right time.

What would you do if you were Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan?  Should the Jets pursue Jeremy Maclin, and if so, at what price? If not, why not?  Are you concerned about his health, his age, his price, or his impact on the young receivers?  Let us know in the poll and in your comments.