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New York Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson plans to play Week 1

By The Sports Xchange
New York Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson plans to play Week 1
New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) reacts after defeating the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey on December 6, 2015. Photo by Rich Kane/UPI | License Photo

New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson vows to be ready for Week 1 of the 2016 season.

Wilkerson, who broke his right leg in Week 17 last season, is still rehabbing and the team wants to be cautious in the early stages of camp.

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"Yeah, I'll be ready for Week 1," he said on a conference call scheduled for the Pro Bowl edge defender to discuss his five-year, $86 million contract, which was signed July 15. "Rehab is going well. I'm running four times a week and just taking it day by day."

Wilkerson, 26, made his first Pro Bowl last season after leading the Jets with 12 sacks, a career high. He broke his fibula in the final game, requiring surgery and a six-month rehab.

His contract inculdes $36.75 million guaranteed and a $15 million signing bonus. The deal averages $17.2 million per season, and also includes an injury guarantee of $53.5 million.

Wilkerson is from New Jersey. He said Wednesday that he was thrilled general manager Mike Maccagnan made the deal work for both sides.

"I definitely wanted to be here," he said. "I'm from New Jersey, I'm from here, my family is here, I wanted to raise my children here, so I'm very excited to be back."

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Wilkerson also recorded 64 tackles and two forced fumbles in 16 games last season. Selected with the 30th overall pick of the 2011 NFL Draft, Wilkerson has 36 sacks and 300 tackles in 77 career games.

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