Maccagnan: Jets not shopping Muhammad Wilkerson

When the New York Jets selected defensive end Leonard Williams with the No. 6 overall pick in last week's draft, it immediately raised the question of Muhammad Wilkerson's future with the franchise.

One of the NFL's most effective young defensive linemen, Wilkerson has been seeking a lucrative new contract since last summer.

Although general manager Mike Maccagnan denies shopping Wilkerson around the league, he is not exactly squashing speculation that his best defensive player is available for the right price in a contract year.

"We're not actively shopping Mo. It's not part of our plans," Maccagnan said Wednesday on WEPN's The Michael Kay Show, via ESPN.com's Rich Cimini. "But, again, his name comes up periodically at times, but nothing active right now."

Maccagnan further acknowledged that Wilkerson's name was discussed when the Jets were gauging the market for a trade into the draft's top five picks.

"Mo's a good player, he's part of this organization and he's currently under contract," Maccagnan continued. "We'd like to keep him in this organization. We just have to go through a process with him to figure out, you know, if we can find a middle ground."

Maccagnan swung the contract leverage in his favor with the Williams pick. He now has an appetizing option if Wilkerson insists on being compensated as one of the game's highest-paid defensive players.

A trade seems unlikely at this point, as draft picks just lost a ton of value with the next iteration 360 days away.

In other words, the Wilkerson contract saga could extend into next offseason, with the franchise tag looming as a possibility in 2016.

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