New York Jets FA Breakdown – Brian Poole

Andrew Fialkow with a closer look at New York Jets new slot CB, Brian Poole…

Andrew Fialkow with a breakdown of New York Jets FA signing Brian Poole…

What it means: Signing Poole may have been a surprise as the Jets
could have went for a bigger named corner. Although PFF wise he has
regressed since his rookie season, he had a very productive season in
2018 with 3 interceptions, 3 sacks and 74 tackles. He will be an upgrade
from former slot CB Buster Skrine who is four years older, had a worse
contract and committed more penalties. Poole can play man and zone
coverage equally well, so fitting into Gregg Willams scheme should not be
too difficult, especially with him teaming up with old college teammate
Marcus Maye. Parry Nickerson is next up after Poole at SCB so this
signing also gives the Jets flexibility to not have Nickerson see significant
action in 2019.

What’s the risk/reward: This was a low-risk, high-reward signing for the
Jets, as it was a 1 year, 3.5 million dollar contract. Poole committed five
penalties in 2018, something that he needs to refine in 2019. Through film
and stats he also displays some over aggression in coverage and tackling
at times causing him to give up big plays. With his hard hitting, comes
some missed tackles as he’s averaged twelve of them a season. He needs
to refine his technique in the slot, as he sometimes gets beat due to his
lack of physicality at the line of scrimmage, and has bad first steps in man
coverage on occasion. On the reward side, Gregg Williams will have the
luxury of having another versatile DB in Poole and can use him along with
Jamal Adams as blitzers on different occasions.

Final thoughts: I’m a big fan of this signing, and Poole’s fit in Gregg
Williams defense. He can play zone coverage well and is aggressive
around the line of scrimmage which will allow Williams to blitz Poole or drop him back. Williams defense is usually hyper aggressive which will fit right in with Poole’s biggest strengths, and possibly minimize the problems he has. Poole had five quarterback hits in 2018 along with three sacks
proving his ability to rush the passer. If Williams optimizes Poole’s
strengths he can be a big part of this defense. Poole can be a huge help
as a blitzer and as well in run support. While his flaws sometimes lie in
coverage, if he can improve and get back to the coverage he played his
rookie year he will be a homerun signing for the Jets. It is on Gregg
Williams to put him in places to succeed. Although the Jets may see him
as a short-term solution while waiting for Nickerson to take strides in his
2nd year, I think Poole has the opportunity to thrive as the starter for the
Jets, especially if his coverage comes back to form.