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The details behind the New York Jets’ post-June 1 cut of Trumaine Johnson

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - AUGUST 08: Trumaine Johnson #22 of the New York Jets looks on from the sideline during a preseason game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on August 08, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Joe Douglas and the New York Jets planned out Trumaine Johnson‘s cut day so it would help the 2020 roster most significantly.

“Happy Trumaine Johnson day,” is the phrase many New York Jets fans are uttering on Tuesday.

No, the “happy” isn’t meant as a sarcastic play on the phrase as seen in Bobby Bonilla’s annual date that sees him rake in $1.19 million every July 1. In this case, the happy is quite legitimate.

New York gets $11 million in cap relief on this day thanks to the Johnson post-June 1 official cut. His cap hit for the 2020 season is just $4 million instead of $15, which gives the Jets just about $25 million in space.

Had they cut him prior to June 1, the bulk of the dead money would have hit this season. Joe Douglas decided to play the long game and allow 2021 to take the majority of the hit, instead. The team will take on an $8 million dead-money hit next season.

Johnson, 30, will go down as one of the organization’s worst free-agent signings. Mike Maccagnan inked the former Rams defensive back to a five-year, $72.5 million deal during the 2018 offseason.

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He made it through just two seasons.

All told, Johnson played in just 17 games (starting 15), coming away with five interceptions, seven pass deflections and 65 tackles. He now enters free agency during an uncertain time for all NFL players.

Veteran free-agent signing Pierre Desir, acquisition Quincy Wilson, and youngsters Bless Austin, Arthur Maulet and rookie Bryce Hall headline the cornerback position for Gregg Williams’s 2020 New York Jets defense.

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