That's when the Jets decided to add some drama to the deadline.
At 4:29 p.m. ET on Friday, the team announced they've reached a long-term deal with defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson.
You can't cut it much closer than that: The official announcement didn't come until 29 minutes after the NFL's mandated deadline.
CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora has reported that Wilkerson has agreed to a five-year, $86 million deal that includes $37 million in fully guaranteed money and $53.5 million guaranteed for injury. Wilkerson is set to make $54 million over the first three years of the contract.
Wilkerson's new deal is worth an average of $17.2 million per year, which is the third highest average for any defensive player in the NFL. Only Ndamukong Suh ($19.06 million) and Von Miller ($19.08 million), the latter of whom signed his new deal on Friday, have a higher average salary.
Of all the deals that went down on Friday, Wilkerson's definitely was the most shocking. Less than 24 hours ago, it looked like a deal had no chance of getting done.
Even Jets fans couldn't believe a deal got done.
Im downright shocked that Wilkerson & Jets agreed to a deal, really thought that was heading to a divorce— Kevin Molina (@KevinMolina85) July 15, 2016
I am SHOCKED Wilkerson got a deal— Bearcub12 | Tyler (@bearcub712) July 15, 2016
Back in June, Wilkerson had said that he didn't feel like the Jets wanted him anymore, and he fully expected to play 2016 under the franchise tag, which would've paid him $15.07 million for one season.
"Do I feel that they want me back? As of right now, no. I don't feel like they want me," Wilkerson said in mid-June. "I'm a talented guy. Everybody knows that. I feel like they're going to get the best they can out of me and just let me go. That's how I feel. Do I like that feeling? No. I'm a New Jersey guy, born and raised and would love to raise my family here."
The Jets ended up making the smart move and keeping the "Jersey guy" in New Jersey.
Wilkerson has been borderline unstoppable since 2011, when the Jets made him the 30th-overall pick in the NFL Draft. The defensive lineman has racked up 301 tackles, 36.5 sacks and 10 forced fumbles during his five seasons.
In 2015, Wilkerson led the team with 12 sacks and was later voted to his first Pro Bowl. With Sheldon Richardson and Leonard Williams surrounding him on the Jets defensive line, Wilkerson could end up having an even bigger year in 2016.