TOJ Jets Roster Preview – Snacks, Douzable Dance, Kenrick Potential

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64 days until the NFL season kicks off. 67 days until the New York Jets kick their season off at home against MATTY SCHAUB and the Oakland Raiders. Today, we are going to begin our roster preview with a look at the defensive tackles: Damon Harrison, Leger Douzable and Kenrick Ellis. We will hit every player likely to make the roster in the coming two months, so stay with us and leave your player predictions in the comment section below on ON THE TWITTUHHH

Damon Harrison, #94 – 497 defensive snaps (45.2 percent) – 66 tackles, 1 sack

It isn’t a hyperbole to say Harrison was an absolute beast in the middle for the Jets last season. The former UDFA played at an All-Pro caliber level and was one of the main reasons the team had the top rushing defense in football. More importantly, he has arguably the best nickname on the roster, BIG SNACKS (who was clever enough to name a 350 pound mammoth this?). The Jets run a heavy amount of nickel, which leads to Harrison’s relatively low usage rate. He is likely heading toward a nice sized contract from the Jets after this season. Some people still question if Kenrick Ellis can push back for the job Harrison took from him but the former UDFA has been durable and if improves this year anywhere near the amount he did from year 1 to year 2…that isn’t going to come close to happening.

Leger Douzable, #78 – 236 defensive snaps (21.5 percent) – 20 tackles, 1.5 sacks

A quiet May addition before last season, Douzable worked his way into being a strong part of the Jets defensive line rotation and earned a new one year contract this offseason. Down the stretch he ended up regularly getting more playing time than Ellis, finishing the season with 28 more snaps than him. Douzable is a versatile player upfront who Rex Ryan loved to move around and who has nice pass rushing ability for a man of his size, while being able to hold up well against the run. When Douzable is your 4th or 5th defensive lineman in a 3-4, you are in very good shape.

Kenrick Ellis, #93 – 208 defensive snaps (19 percent) – 16 tackles

A 2011 3rd round pick, Ellis has battled a handful of injuries throughout his short career but flashed plenty of POTENTIAL when on the field. A bull against the run, Ellis moves tremendously well for a 6’4, 346 pound human being. Last season our Mike O’Connor wrote an article that floated the idea of trading Ellis and ever since TOJ has been hit with unusually high amounts of ELLIS OUTRAGE (you would have thought he demanded trading Muhammad Wilkerson). Personally, I didn’t find the article so crazy. Should the Jets be actively seeking to trade Ellis? No. He provides excellent depth for Harrison. If the right deal comes along from a team desperate for defensive line help, do the Jets take that call and give it some real thought? Probably. They brought Douzable back quickly this offseason and considering how the playing time was trending at the end of last season, Ellis is really the team’s fifth defensive lineman in the rotation as of now. I think Ellis is on the team throughout 2014 but that it ends up being his last in New York.

DEFENSIVE TACKLE SCALDING HOT 2014 TAKE - Harrison has another strong year leading the Jets rush defense and earns a new contract from them next offseason. Douzable plays 40-60 more reps than Ellis and finishes with 2-4 sacks. Ellis is solid off the bench but leaves in free agency next offseason. I think too many Jets fans sleep on Douzable’s value and still have too high of hopes for Ellis.

  • @mccgm

    Love douz Ellis is ok im a little disappointed with him although he was a 3rd pick.

  • JetOrange

    We are all in love with measurables, Ellis is 6’4 330, Douzable is 6’4 285. But there is very little difference in the two players productivity. Douzable is a product of Karl Dunbar and Rex putting him into a great position to succeed, could be a consistent starter, at 285 I don’t think so. Snacks came into the league with two bad knees, it has not been a problem, but do you sign a guy to a long term contract with bad knees ? I would trade Ellis, but you can’t get value, and some team will overpay in free agency because he is 6’4 330. The Jets have decision to make, the guy that may make these decisions even more interesting is TJ Barnes. NT that has slimmed down from 360 to 335. If TJ is a player, Karl Dunbar maybe the most valuable coach.

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  • Mark

    What can you say about these guys? A surfeit of riches! Trade Ellis and you still have a stable of superior talent.

  • Neil

    I would trade Ellis as he cant stay healthy. The next Snacks is sitting on the practice squad and his name is TJ Barnes

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  • JetOrange

    The Jets have 22 million in cap space, so why can’t they sign Snacks and Ellis. the contract for Linval Joseph formally with the Giants and now with the Vikings is 5 years 32 million. Joseph a second round pick, did nothing as a Giant, but he is huge and has those great measurables. So I expect Snacks to cost 6 million a year

  • KAsh

    @JetOrange

    Linval Joseph was a good, emerging tackle for the Giants and is considered one of the biggest losses they had this offseason. And the math for whoever will be the backup does not work out. Last year, our starter played less than 50% of all snaps and his backup pitched in less than 20% of the time. Since we run a base 3-4, you can justify the salary for an elite nose tackle, but it is impossible to justify the salaries of two elite nose tackles, one of which plays “veteran minimum” amount of snaps. The easiest way to come up short of the playoffs every year is to devote lots of cap space to players that see the field from the sidelines. Before you start to protest that “nose tackles get injured a lot” or “it is great to have elite backups,” the first may never happen, the second is a pure waste of money and talent, and neither is an acceptable argument in a sport limited by a salary cap.

  • JetOrange

    @kash, you are correct, you certainly cannot afford two nose tackles at 6 million a year. I was not clear, Linval Joseph just showed me where the market was for emerging NT/ DT at 6 million, pretty steep. Therefore I expect the Jets to wrap up Snacks early, and if they do it for under 6 million it is a win… I can see TJ Barnes being the sixth defensive lineman on the 53, because Ellis is gone in 2015 ….Please note the Giants (cap strapped) did not even try to sign Joseph, it will be the same with Ellis and the Jets.

  • KAsh

    It is a good sign that the Jets have a problem teams want to have: too much talent at a position. I almost wish Barnes does not develop, so we can stash him on the practice squad for another year. But a good problem is still a problem.

    I think the Jets keep Harrison and Ellis on the roster, mark the starter for a long-term contract, drum up the interest for the backup, and hope no one picks Barnes off the practice squad. Best case scenario, you have an elite NT signed long-term, Barnes as a solid backup for at least the next three years, and get a decent draft pick in return for this year’s backup. Worst case scenario, you still have a great NT signed long-term, but someone steals Barnes off the PS (or he never develops), and you lose this year’s backup next offseason (but likely get a compensatory pick for him); you spend a late pick in next year’s draft to bring in competition at backup NT. It would be great to reap the maximum benefit out of this situation.

  • Mark

    Kash – how much are these compensatory picks worth in the real world?

  • KAsh

    @Mark

    A compensatory pick would not be ideal, but it is something. This year, we got Dozier with a fourth-round compensatory pick and lots of people seem to be really worried about losing Enunwa, who was a sixth-round compensatory pick. Two years ago, Allen was a seventh-round compensatory pick that everyone has high hopes for. There are also third-round compensatory picks, which are basically additional top 100 draft picks, free of charge. Dri Archer and Crockett Gilmore were selected with them this year, and I do not know what team would turn down the chance to draft them. Of course, a traded draft pick that you can then package to move up is better, but if you are down on your luck, you care much less whether you eat a plain chicken sandwich or a prime sirloin steak.

  • JetOrange

    The Jets may not get a comp pick for Ellis. With The Jets huge cap room if they sign more quality free agents than they lose, they get nothing

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