The New York Jets are releasing wide receiver/kick returner Braxton Berrios in a salary cap move, according to a person familiar with the decision.
Berrios, an All-Pro selection as a kick returner in 2021, was due to count $8.2 million on the cap and the sides couldn’t come to an agreement on a restructured contract. The person spoke to The Associated Press on Thursday on condition of anonymity because the move won’t become official until the NFL’s new year begins next Wednesday.
ESPN first reported the Jets’ decision to release Berrios.
“Thank you New York!” Berrios wrote on his Instagram page on Thursday night. “Man what a wild 4 years it’s been. I couldn’t imagine a better place to play and people to share these memories with. From a cast off to an All-Pro-I’ve grown so much and have an immense amount to be thankful for.”
New York will save $5 million on the cap by releasing Berrios, but will have $3.2 million in dead money. Berrios was re-signed last offseason to a two-year, $12 million contract. He’s the first significant player to be cut by the Jets as they try to improve their salary cap situation.
New York was slightly over the cap heading into next week, but recently cleared $3.6 million when they restructured tight end C.J. Uzomah’s contract by converting $4.5 million of this year’s salary into a bonus.
“Joe Douglas and the rest of upper management-Thank you for giving me a chance 4 years ago,” Berrios wrote. “I hate we couldn’t work this one out but I’m so grateful for the career you’ve allowed me to build here in New York. This team is on the right track.”
The 27-year-old Berrios was a versatile presence in the Jets’ offense and on special teams during his four seasons in New York. He was claimed off waivers by the Jets from New England in 2019 after being a sixth-round pick of the Patriots out of Miami in 2018.
Berrios has 107 career catches for 1,085 yards and five touchdowns – all with the Jets. He also has averaged 24.9 yards on kickoff returns, including leading the league with 30.4 yards per return in 2021. Berrios also has averaged 11.4 yards on punt returns in his career.
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