- Rich Cimini, ESPN Staff Writer
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In a mild surprise, the Jets released veteran DL Marcus Dixon, his agent tweeted Saturday.
Dixon, who played in every game last season, figured to be part of the defensive-line rotation. But the Jets also acquired former Dolphins DT Isaako Aaitui on waivers Saturday, perhaps making Dixon expendable.
Finances may have factored into the decision. Dixon was due to make only $540,000, but the Jets apparently are concerned with salary, even though they were about $6 million under the cap as of a few days ago.
According to sources, it was mentioned at a contentious personnel meeting last week that certain moderately priced veterans were on the bubble because of salary. It's the reason why FB John Conner ($540,000) was on the bubble. Conner survived the final cut-down, but he may have been spared because of the season-ending knee injury to FB/TE Josh Baker.
The Jets acquired Dixon on waivers from the Cowboys in 2010. GM Mike Tannenbaum frequently mentioned Dixon as a prime example of how teams can improve themselves by picking up players on the final cut-down.
Dixon (three starts) finished with 1.5 sacks last season.