- Rich Cimini, ESPN Staff Writer
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"I have a life outside of football n I chose to enjoy my family a little longer so to u fans that know everything please worry bout yourself," Richardson tweeted on Friday.
Coach Todd Bowles said Wednesday that Richardson has missed about half of the team's workouts, which began six weeks ago. Richardson also skipped the first two days of organized team activities (OTAs), Tuesday and Wednesday, but he showed up Thursday.
"All I'm hearing from ppl is get to OTA's etc. like I jus wasn't at practice yesterday putting in wrk tho," Richardson tweeted.
It's important to note that workouts and OTA practices are voluntary, according to the collective bargaining agreement. The only mandatory phase of the offseason is minicamp, which runs June 9-11.
Bowles said he had "no idea" why Richardson was absent, but he wasn't critical of his star player.
"It's voluntary, so there's not much you can do," Bowles said.
Unlike fellow defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson, who is skipping the offseason activities while he waits for a contract extension, Richardson's no-shows have nothing to do with his contract. He has played only two years and, according to the CBA, he can't renegotiate until after his third season.
Richardson, a first-round pick in 2013, is regarded as one of the brightest young defensive talents in the league. He was the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year and he followed up last year with a Pro Bowl appearance, albeit as an alternate.
Pro Bowl defensive end Sheldon Richardson, criticized on social media for his sporadic attendance in the Jets' offseason program, fired back at fans on Twitter.