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The Jets' secondary just got even younger.

In a surprising move, New York has released cornerback Bless Austin, as first reported by Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

Austin, 25, was expected to be a huge part of this inexperienced group of corners in 2021, poised to start and match up against top wide receivers. The Rutgers product racked up 63 tackles and defended four passes over 11 games last year during his sophomore season, taking a step closer to his potential at this level. 

According to Garafolo's report, New York was recently trying to trade the former sixth-rounder. Now, they've just decided to move on.

"He's a good young man," Jets head coach Robert Saleh said of Austin on Wednesday. "With the youth we have at corner and the competition that they've all been able to provide and the growth they've been able to have since OTAs and training camp, we're going to give those guys a run and give them an opportunity to compete over this last week and a half."

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Asked who will take Austin's spot, Saleh said that decision is to be determined, but mentioned rookies Brandin Echols, Jason Pinnock, Isaiah Dunn, along with second-year corner Javelin Guidry.

Saleh added that with eight corners on the initial 53-man roster, this came down to a numbers game, an effort to prevent possible deficiencies in other position groups. Teams typically don't carry that many defensive backs and as this coaching staff has preached all offseason, they want to give their young corners a shot to succeed.

Earlier in the month, Austin addressed the media, confidently telling reporters that he's the "real deal."

“Click the tape and press play," Austin said. "Of course I make mistakes, but there’s also a lot of plays on that field I made that other corners in this league aren’t making."


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