In the wake of Mike Maccagnan's firing by the New York Jets on Wednesday, details about his reportedly contentious relationship with head coach Adam Gase may have shed some light on the surprising move.
Per Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, Gase disagreed with Maccagnan and Jets chairman Christopher Johnson about signing Le'Veon Bell because he "made it clear that he didn't want to spend a lot of money on any running back."
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport added Gase likes Bell as a player but "didn't love the money." He also "didn't love the price tag" on linebacker C.J. Mosley when the Jets signed him as a free agent.
After sitting out last season while in a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Bell wound up securing the long-term deal he had been seeking from New York.
He didn't set a new standard for running backs, though he secured the second-largest deal among active players at the position. His $35 million in guaranteed money and $52.5 million total value over four years is behind Los Angeles Rams star Todd Gurley, per Over the Cap.
Mosley's five-year, $85 million deal ($51 million guaranteed) is the richest ever given to an inside linebacker.
The Jets' signing of Bell was likely motivated by a desire to surround second-year quarterback Sam Darnold with playmakers. The 21-year-old threw for 2,865 yards and 17 touchdowns as a rookie with Robby Anderson as his No. 1 receiver and Isaiah Crowell at running back.
Bell has had at least 1,800 yards from scrimmage and nine total touchdowns in three of his last four seasons from 2014-17. Mosley has had at least 92 combined tackles in each of his five NFL seasons.
Firing Maccagnan signals the Jets are all-in on Gase as the leader of their franchise. Even though he apparently wasn't on board with those offseason moves, it's on him to put the team in the best position to claim for a playoff spot for the first time since 2010.