Brandon Marshall Released by New York Jets

Tyler ConwayFeatured ColumnistMarch 2, 2017

FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 24: Wide Receiver Brandon Marshall #15 of the New York Jets fires up his teammates before the game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on December 24, 2016 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)
Al Pereira/Getty Images

The New York Jets are moving on from wide receiver Brandon Marshall. The Jets announced they were releasing the veteran Friday.

ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported the news Thursday, and Kimberley A. Martin of Newsday reported Marshall asked for his release to find a "better fit."

Marshall took to Instagram to thank the fans and New York media:

Marshall, 32, spent the last two seasons in New York. A year removed from a Pro Bowl appearance, Marshall posted his worst full-season numbers since his rookie year, finishing with 59 receptions, 788 yards and three touchdowns in 2016.

With Ryan Fitzpatrick posting career-worst numbers and his replacements not doing much better, there was little Marshall could do to make things better. New York quarterbacks threw an NFL-high 25 interceptions and posted the league's worst quarterback rating (67.6).

The Jets will save $7.5 million by ridding their cap of Marshall's base salary for 2017, per Spotrac. There was some speculation that he would take a pay cut to remain in New York after comments he made after the season, but he was clear in a January interview with Daniel Popper of the New York Daily News that wasn't the case.

"I didn't say I'll take a pay cut," Marshall said. "What I said was I love football so much that I would play football if my bills were paid. I wasn't talking about the New York Jets, or any other team for that matter. I was talking about my love for the game, and how I'm at a point in my career, too, where it's not about the money."

Whatever team signs Marshall next will have to contend with his burgeoning media career and his reputation as a divisive locker room force. He has spent the last three seasons as a contributor to Inside the NFL, which is based in New York. It's unclear if he will continue that gig in his next stop.

Marshall had a strained relationship with Bears quarterback Jay Cutler before departing Chicago, per Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune, and an argument between him and Sheldon Richardson after a Week 3 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs reportedly carried over all season.

"I wouldn't say a dark cloud. A cat's true colors came out," Richardson told reporters after the season. "That's pretty much that."

Richardson seemed noncommittal about even playing with Marshall next season, which likely made the Jets' decision to move on easier.

As for the player whatever team that signs him will be getting, Marshall was ranked tied for 67th among wide receivers by Pro Football Focus in 2016. Football Outsiders' DVOA metric ranked him 80th.