Joe Malfa lists five notable players that could be surprising cuts as the New York Jets continue their offseason activities.
1) Jason Babin (Edge)- After the New York Jets drafted Lorenzo Mauldin and Leonard Williams, Babin’s hopes of making this team took a hit. Mauldin, a 3rd round pick with a superior skill set to Babin’s, will jump ahead of the 12 year pro on the depth chart. Williams versatility allowes him to line up anywhere along the defensive front, filling many of Babin’s presumed roles. Beyond the 2015 draft picks, IK Enemkpali is a player on the rise that may be able to supplant the veteran.Babin was brought in last season to get to the quarterback, but he only recorded two sacks. The New York Jets front seven is among the best in the league and is loaded with players that will outproduce Babin. He is more than capable of sticking elsewhere, but this Jet defense is too deep for him to find a role.
2) Jeff Cumberland (TE)- After showing signs of promise in 2012, Jet fans awaited the emergence of Cumberland as a legitimate threat over the middle in 2013. He made slight improvements, but the tangible results were negligible as he recorded 398 yards and 4 TDs (compared to his 359 yards and 3 TDs in 2012). Jet fans once again expected improvement from the tight end in 2014 and again he was a tremendous disappointment. Cumberland played in all 16 games. Yet, it seemed as though he played less because he was invisible on a hand-full of Sundays. Cumberland only managed to record 247 yards and 3 TDs, with Jace Amaro seeing the majority of the targets and Zach Sudfeld stealing snaps as well.
Amaro and Sudfeld are not going anywhere, and the addition of Kellen Davis may spell the end for Cumberland. Davis is a gifted blocker who will be used a lot in the run game, Amaro is the best down-field threat of the bunch, and Sudfeld is the best red zone threat with his 6’7″ frame. Cumberland does not fit into this puzzle and will likely be catching passes from a new QB in 2015.
3) Willie Colon OR Brian Winters (OG)- The key word here is “or.” I do not see any way that both of these players get cut (it is actually more likely that they both stay), but they are both underachieving veterans in a crowded group of guards. Oday Aboushi outplayed Winters last season, so look for Aboushi to be the front runner at the left guard spot. James Carpenter was not brought in at $5 million per year to be Willie Colon’s backup, so the right guard job is Carpenter’s. Dakota Dozier and Jarvis Harrison round out this crowded crop of guards, and it is highly unlikely that six will be kept. Harrison is a lock by virtue of being a 5th round pick this season, and the raw Dozier has the potential to become a solid starter once coached up a bit more.It will come down to Winters and Colon, and it will likely be Winters’ race to lose. Both were mediocre last season, Winters a bit more so than Colon. However, Winters is younger and still has time to develop. Colon is a penalty machine who is past his prime. He will have to hope for either an injury or an abysmal showing by Winters in training camp to make this team.
4) Matt Simms (QB)- The drafting of Bryce Petty was likely the final nail in the coffin for Simms. When a QB is drafted in the 4th round, he is a lock to make the team. Simms will only make this team as the 3rd-string QB if the coaching staff deems Petty not ready to take on that roll and he is placed on season-ending IR with a phantom injury; a common practice used to allow the rookie to sit back and learn while an experienced QB occupies the 3rd spot. Other than that, Simms really has no hope. Cut shortly after article was posted
5) Jaiquawn Jarrett (S)- Calvin Pryor, Antonio Allen, and Marcus Gilchrist will be the top three safeties on this team. Special teams value comes into play when deciding on a position like a fourth safety and, for that reason alone, Rontez Miles will edge out Jarrett. Jarrett may have a very slight edge on Miles at the safety position based on experience, but it would not be a surprise if Miles came into camp and outplayed Jarrett. And again, Miles can have a significant impact on special teams, whereas Jarrett does not do much in that department. It will be splitting hairs between these two, but look for Miles to get his chance to prove his worth. Jarrett will look to prove his worth in a tryout with another team.