New York Jets Would Be Foolish To Sign Meriweather

The New York Jets would be making a major mistake if they signed safety Brandon Meriweather

Nobody is more aware or in support of the New York Jets upgrading their safety position than this website. However, signing free agent safety Brandon Meriweather is far from the right approach when it comes to fixing arguably the team’s weakest spot. If you are looking to sign a player who has seen their play has radically decline the past two years, is a penalty/fine drawing machine on the field and a major liability off it, then go ahead and sign Meriweather.

In 2009, Meriweather put together a strong year for the New England Patriots finishing with 83 tackles, 5 interceptions, and 2 forced fumbles. In 2010, those numbers declined to 68 tackles, 3 interceptions, and 0 forced fumbles. He also picked up a $50,000 dollar fine for a hit on Todd Heap. The Patriots cut Merriweather right before the 2011 season and say what you want about them, they know a thing or two about making roster decisions. He was picked up by the Bears where he played in only 11 games, starting 4. He finished with 32 tackles, 0 interceptions, and 0 forced fumbles.

Last season in Chicago, Meriweather was fined $20,000 and $25,000 in consecutive weeks for illegal hits before being benched by the Bears coaching staff for routinely missing tackles and giving up big plays. Former Chicago Bears receiver, Tom Waddle, had this to say about Meriweather’s style of play

“What Brandon does is he leads with his helmet all the time. There’s no place in the game, brother, at this particular time for that. It’s vicious enough. And when your intent, in my humble opinion, is to hurt or maim, I’ve got no time for you, and I don’t think the game’s got any place for you. I did not realize how undisciplined a player Brandon Meriweather was. He comes with two Pro Bowls. And he came with a lot of interceptions. But … red flag goes up when a guy like Bill Belichick decides to let you go.”

Also, in case you forgot Meriweather was involved in a gun fight at the University of Miami in 2006 and accused of shooting two men in early 2011. And of course there was Meriweather swinging his helmet at other players during this infamous brawl

Signing Meriweather shows the Jets continuing to ignore character, which backfired on them last year but beyond that, they are signing an ineffective player. Look at Meriweather thriving as the line of defense prior to his benching last season –

The New York Jets would be better on and off the field by staying put with Eric Smith and Jim Leonhard than signing Meriweather and this is coming from somebody who thinks Smith and Leonhard were terrible last season. The team needs to focus on getting Reggie Nelson or even LaRon Landry and his injury history before signing Meriweather. If they come up empty in free agency on those two, look to the trade market or the draft…just don’t go with Meriweather.

New York Jets Resign Bryan Thomas, Other Updates

The New York Jets have resigned OLB Bryan Thomas and other free agency updates

The New York Jets have resigned outside linebacker Bryan Thomas to a one year deal. This is a smart, low risk move by the team and will help their solidify their depth at the linebacker position. Thomas is coming off a season ending torn Achilles and is expected to be ready when training camp starts. He is a good fit in Rex Ryan’s defense and is solid against the run.

The signing of Thomas could be the first in a series of moves that facilitates a trade of outside linebacker Calvin Pace. If the Jets can also bring in free agent Jarret Johnson and spend their first round pick on a player like Melvin Ingram, Andre Branch, or Courtney Upshaw the Jets could be looking to move Pace and his hefty contract.

In other news, the Jets are planning a visit with former Detroit Lions quarterback Drew Stanton. We speculated here earlier that the Jets could have interest in Stanton as a low cost backup to Mark Sanchez. The Jets have also expressed their interest in free agent safeties Brandon Merriweather, LaRon Landry and Reggie Nelson according to The Daily News. At wide receiver, outside of reaching out to Laurent Robinson the Jets are also interested in former Oakland receiver Chaz Schilens, who was coached by their new wide receivers coach Sanjay Lal.

What is frustrating to hear is that the Miami Dolphins have a visit scheduled with Eric Winston tonight and the Jets haven’t had any movement towards expressing interest in him or any other tackles on the market, yet.

Other news around the league – Josh Morgan signing with the Washington Redskins, joining Pierre Garcon. CB Brandon Carr visiting with the Cowboys. TE Martellus Bennett visiting with the Giants and Chad Henne planning to visit Seattle after meeting with Jacksonville.