"I don't envision that happening," general manager Mike Maccagnan said late Thursday night after picking linebacker Darron Lee in the first round of the NFL draft.
Up until a week ago, Maccagnan was non-committal on whether he was trying to deal Wilkerson, who has the franchise tag. In reality, the Jets, unable to reach a long-term contract, have been open to trading him, source said.
But as the draft drew closer, it became increasingly apparent that no deal would happen. It's not easy to execute a tag-and-trade because the player has to sign his tender and agree to a long-term deal with the new team. There's also the matter of compensation between the two teams.
"It's a little more complicated" than a routine trade, Maccagnan said. The Jets reportedly fielded calls in recent weeks, but no serious suitors have emerged, sources said.
Wilkerson, 26, rehabbing a surgically repaired broken leg, is skipping voluntary workouts for the second straight offseason. It remains to be seen whether he shows up for the mandatory minicamp in June.
If the two sides can't agree to a new contract by July 15, Wilkerson will play in 2016 for the amount of his franchise tender, $15.7 million. He's thought to be seeking a deal that would pay him at least $50 million in guarantees.