TOJ’s 1st & 10: NFL Free Agency is Here for the New York Jets!

1st…

It’s Christmas in March! The best time of the year for any Jets fan is here. We are on the precipice of the offseason where it is our time to shine! The legal tampering period (which is oxy-moronic by nature) is set to begin in a few hours, the rumors are already swirling and the surefire panic will certainly set in amongst Jets fans, probably followed by an over-exaggeration of how good this team is going to be heading into 2022, and then followed back up with calls for Joe Douglas’ head because he was eeked out by another team for a mid-level tight end.

I kid… kind of.

The reality is, as we have all probably said at one point or another, that this offseason is truly the most important one for this franchise in a while, for a myriad of reasons. First, the GM, Head Coach, Quarterback, and basically the entire franchise is finally on the same timeline. Second, the roster has holes everywhere that need filling and the team has of capital both in the draft and within the salary cap to be major players in both markets. Third, they have a 2nd year quarterback that needs help for two reasons: 1. to win games and 2. To get a fair evaluation on him to know whether he’s “the guy.” These are three of the top reasons this offseason means so much, but it’s certainly not limited to those. The cherry on top is that the Jets haven’t been to the postseason in (checks watch) 11 years! That’s reason enough to be aggressive.

Yet, here we are. So, as the tampering begins and the news continues to drop, here are my rankings on the 10 Free Agents I would love for the Jets to be doing their “due diligence” on.

& 10…

1. James Daniels, G, Bears (24) – This is no secret that the youth and scheme fit makes all the sense in the world for a team that is looking to upgrade the interior OL over years past with Greg Van Roten. The Jets would love to get back to the ground and pound of the Rex Ryan days, and this would be a legitimate first step.

2. Marcus Williams, S, Saints (25) – Arguably a top 5 safety in his prime at a position of desperate need for the Jets. Joe Douglas would be crazy not to go all in on him.

3. Carlton Davis, CB, Bucs (25) – Another young player entering his prime at a position of need… sound familiar? Davis would be the perfect option as CB1 on this team as you let Bryce Hall and Brandin Echols battle for the #2 spot and provide yourself with depth. What a novel concept!

4. Tyrann Mathieu, S, Chiefs (29) – While the age may be a concern, there is certainly still talent there. When you pack his ability with the leadership and stability he brings, this could be a great backup option if they miss on Marcus Williams and also the perfect fit to pair with  LaMarcus Joyner and a day 2 or 3 pick at the position.

5. Chandler Jones, Edge, Cardinals (32) – Older player but still super productive. The Jets could correct the Quinton Coples mistake 10 years later to get the player they should have landed in the 2012 draft.

6. Allen Robinson, WR, Bears (28) – A long time dream of many Jets fans. Could he be the 2015 Brandon Marshall reincarnated? I would hope so. The only reason this name isn’t higher is because of my belief the Jets will go WR at #10, but the lure of signing Robinson and maybe drafting a receiver on day 2 (like a Jahan Dotson) is very appealing.

7. CJ Uzomah, TE, Bengals (29) – The tight end market dried up pretty quickly, but signing Uzomah would instantly make him the best tight end the Jets have had since Dustin Keller. Pairing him with a Ruckert or McBride would be a Jets fan’s dream and a match made in heaven… finally providing legitimate middle of the field threats for Zach Wilson.

8. Brandon Scherff, G, Commanders (30) – Put Scherff in the Robinson category of long time Jets dreams. This would be a great signing and addition for this offensive line, because when he’s on the field he’s a great player and changes the identity of the unit. However, the best ability is availability and the Jets would certainly be gun shy about a 30-year-old guard who has missed time in each of the last 5 seasons.

9. Danielle Hunter, Edge, Vikings (27) – Not a free agent but could be available via trade as we heard reports that the Vikings had already fielded calls. While less likely, this would be a home run addition for the Jets to pair with Carl Lawson and provide them more flexibility at the top of the draft as the “need” for an edge wouldn’t be as prevalent.Editor’s Note:Scherff has signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars

10. Laken Tomlinson, G, 49ers (30) – Three guards in my top 10 shows the importance of changing the attitude and play of this offensive line. Tomlinson had a rough start to his career in Detroit but has blossomed with San Francisco. His durability (hasn’t missed a game in 5 years) and familiarity with the offensive scheme would make him a great fit in green & white. Editor’s Note: The Jets added the Pro Bowl Guard to be their new starting RG.

TOJ Running Free Agency Blog for the New York Jets

As the tampering window “opens” (let’s be clear, it’s been open for weeks), we will drop takes on rumors and signings that don’t become official for a few days right here. The hope is that no one is Anthony Barr’d, but we ride anyway! Bookmark to follow the free agency period.

March 16th, 9:14 AM: The Jets haven’t signed anybody yet as of this morning, which means Joe Douglas must be fired. Just kidding, friends. Here’s some guys still available that Douglas could target, and this list might as well be titled “Guys DA has wanted since writing for TOJ”: 1. Allen Robinson: if the Jets want a veteran in the wide receiver room, Allen Robinson could be the guy they pivot to. There are questions about whether he still has anything left or whether last year was because of his disinterest in remaining in Chicago. I think it is the former, but this signing would probably confirm that the Jets will go corner with one of their top 10 picks. #NotIdeal 2. Jadeveon Clowney: DraftSZN’s Joe Belic has consistently reminded us that the Niners deployed a bigger edge opposite their pass rushers in order to ensure they could successfully stop the run while also getting to the QB. Jadeveon Clowney has settled in nicely as that big edge who can stop the run while also getting to the QB (has had at least 9 sacks in 3 seasons). There was a rumor that the Jets had entered the Chandler Jones sweepstakes, but that felt an awful lot like a “teams aren’t rushing to make my client an offer so let me throw the Jets out there” kind of news. Clowney could be a target to both improve their terrible run defense and provide some juice on pass rushing situations. 3. Melvin Ingram: if the focus is to ignore the bad run defense and add a guy that can just rush the passer, then Melvin Ingram could be the guy. With the Jets losing Foley Fatukasi, it could stand to reason that you will see more of John Franklyn Myers inside next to Quinnen Williams with Sheldon Rankins potentially playing the main depth tackle role. That does leave an opening for Kayvon Thibadeaux opposite Carl Lawson, but what if you could put a front four of Lawson, Williams, Thibadeaux, and Ingram on passing downs? Robert Saleh did this alot with the 49ers where he moved Arik Armstead inside next to Deforest Buckner and had Dee Ford with his hand in the dirt. 4. Maxx Williams: the Jets added CJ Uzomah to be their TE1, but everything we’ve heard says they’re not done at TE yet. Could they take a swing at OJ Howard? Hayden Hurst? Or will they opt for a more blocking TE with some pass catching production in the form of Maxx Williams? The name of the game this offseason on offense has been to improve the mentality of this team, and they did that by adding two bullies in Laken Tomlinson and Uzomah. Maxx Williams fits that moniker as a blocker. Improving the run blocking will only increase Michael Carter’s productivity, which will help Zach Wilson in the playaction game. Williams could go a long way towards helping that. 5. JC Tretter: look, sometimes players are released that really have no business being released. JC Tretter is one of them. He allowed one sack last year on 1078 snaps. Connor McGovern isn’t it up front. Adding Tretter and Tomlinson to this offensive line would immediately take this unit from a potentially good unit to a potentially great unit. If Fant plays how he played last year, and AVT takes a step? Zach Wilson could build a nightclub in Florham Park with how much time he will have. Cut McGovern, net the $9M in savings, and get this done. -DO

March 16th, 8:40 AM: The Jets have made four large additions to the roster, and now redirect their attention towards depth and bringing back their own. They began that with Berrios, Coleman and Shepherd. Now, according to Brian Costello, interior offensive lineman Dan Feeney will return to the team on a one year deal next season. Feeney, known for his fantastic mullet and chugging beers at Islander games, also has a mean streak and proved to be another strong player as a depth piece on the line last season.-DP

March 15th, 8:45 PM: The Jets have now resigned defensive tackle Nathan Shepherd. Shepherd now becomes the first player to earn a second contract from the Mike Maccagnan era. Shepherd has become a consistent piece of the defensive line rotation, last season he appeared in all 17 games, racking up 28 tackles with eight pressures. Shepherd remains a mainstay from the previous regime, while continuing to provide depth to the line of the current regime.-DP

March 15th, 3:03 PM:  Connor Hughes has reported that the New York Jets have inked former Seattle Seahawks corner D.J. Reed to a three year, 33 million dollar deal. Reed ranked in the top ten in PFF coverage grading, and finished the season with 78 tackles and two interceptions. His ball skills are stronger than arguably any defensive back on the roster, he has familiarity with both the scheme and Saleh himself, plus, he’s well versed in man and zone coverage. At only 25 years old, Reed is a big addition to a defense that ranked in the bottom half of the league in pass defense, and figures to slot in as a starter immediately.-DP

March 15th, 5:10 PM: According to Rich Cimini, Jordan Whitehead, a safety from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, has agreed to join the Jets on a two year 14.5 million dollar deal. Whitehead is a good fit for the team as he is about to freshly turn 25, is a superb athlete and excels in both run defense and pass defense. Last season, Whitehead posted 73 tackles, two interceptions and 5.0 TFLs. Similar to Reed, Whitehead will be entrusted to help elevate one of the worst defenses in the NFL.-DP

March 14th: 7:00pm: The Jets have a new TE! Adam Schefter reported the Jets have agreed to terms with CJ Uzomah formerly of the Bengals for 3 years $24MM. I’ve always liked CJ and wanted the Jets to go after him if the big fish TE were to be tagged. Uzomah is never going to be a 1k yard receiver but he’s a great target in the red zone and can block. He was also beloved in the Cincinnati locker room. This is the type of guy to help instill a winning culture (coming off a SB appearance). Pair CJ with a guy like Ruckert or McBride in the draft and you got yourself a solid TE corps for Zach Wilson in year 2. -SZ

March 14th, 2:50 PM: Berrios is back in the green and white! Receiver and kick returner Braxton Berrios is back with the Jets on a two year 12 million dollar deal with 7 million guaranteed. Berrios was the one constant as the receiver room dealt with injuries for the entirety of the season. Berrios posted 46 receptions for 431 yards and five total touchdowns. He’s a consistent weapon and safety net for Zach Wilson, a good locker room guy and someone who will continue to produce on special teams. For the Jets, this always made sense if the price was right and in this case, six million dollars a year was the right price for Joe Douglas to bring Berrios back.-DP

March 14th, 2:45 PM: The Jets are on the board! According to Adam Schefter, the New York Jets have agreed to terms with Pro Bowl guard Laken Tomlinson on a three year 40 million dollar deal with 27 million guaranteed. Tomlinson has missed only one game in his career, and it was due to not having enough time to get ready to play after being traded from the Lions to the 49ers a few years ago. Tomlinson is durable and consistent, a mauler and will solidify the guard position for the Jets alongside AVT. Tomlinson is reportedly going to be swapping sides from left to right in order to accommodate for AVT.-DP

p>March 14th, 11:20AM: Another Connor Hughes tweet regarding a potential Jets target. Scherff would be a tremendous upgrade to the interior of this Jets offensive line. He is one of the best offensive guards in football. The issue with him has always been health as he rarely has played a full season in his 6 year career. I think a 1 year deal would be a great move by JD but he probably will be looking for 3-4 years. -SZ

March 14th, 7:54 AM: Connor Hughes had this tweet this morning regarding the Jets and who they may be all in on this off-season. Keep in mind: there have been no leaks out of Florham Park since Joe Douglas took over, and there’s no way to know if the Jets really were interested in someone who ends up somewhere else, but it gives an interesting perspective if true.-DO

TOJ DraftSZN Presents Dylan’s Dimes: Mock Free Agency

The New York Jets Mock Free Agency of your dreams!

With free agency rapidly approaching and the New York Jets holding the second most cap space of any team, it figures to be a wild week ahead for the Gang Green. I sat down to evaluate the best way the team could approach the next few weeks, who the team could add and who the team could subtract.

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TOJ Realistic Offseason: What I Think Joe Douglas Does For The New York Jets

It is safe to say that this is a pivotal offseason for the New York Jets. Armed with cap space and a cache of picks, it is imperative that the team be in contention for a playoff spot next year. While they don’t need to replicate what the Bengals did, there is zero reason why they can’t be in the hunt come 2022. Yesterday, I gave you what I would do if I was the New York Jets. Today, i’m giving you what I think Joe Douglas does for the New York Jets. As always, I used Fanspeak’s simulator and the salary cap numbers are provided by Over The Cap

Cap Space at start of league year: $52.8M
Draft Picks at start of league year: 4, 10, 35, 38, 69, 108, 114, 144 and 148

Internal Moves before beginning of league year

Trade
Denzel Mims and the 20th pick in the 5th round to the Los Angeles Rams for the 32nd pick in the 4th round
I think Joe Douglas opts to add another day 3 selection instead of keeping Denzel Mims and sends Mims to an NFC team. I think Mims will fare better elsewhere than he did here. This trade nets the Jets an additional $1M in cap space.

Trade

38th pick in the NFL Draft to the Denver Broncos for WR Jerry Jeudy
Getting the last pick in the 4th round via the Mims trade makes this move a little easier to make, and it nabs you a young WR to add to your core. With the Broncos extending Courtland Sutton and Tim Patrick and still having KJ Hamler on the roster, I think they opt to move the former first round WR. Given that he’s due for an extension the year after next, I think Douglas pounces and sends the last pick received for his former QB to help his current QB.

Cut:
EDGE Shaq Lawson (+9M)
G Greg Van Roten (+3M)
TE Ryan Griffin (+3M)
DL Sheldon Rankins (+5M)
Shaq Lawson didn’t really produce when given the opportunity, and I think Douglas and Saleh see Bradlee Anee as a capable depth piece off the edge for a fraction of the cost. Greg Van Roten was awful while in there and nets an additional three million for Gang Green. The big surprise is Sheldon Rankins, who played really well this past year, but the emergence of Jonathan Marshall makes Rankins expendable.

Resign:
QB Joe Flacco (2 years/14M/7M guaranteed)
WR/KR Braxton Berrios (3 years/18M/12.6 guaranteed)
OG Connor McDermott (1 year/2M/1M guaranteed)
Keeping Berrios allows you to let Crowder and Cole walk, and I think Douglas opts for that path. Flacco being back as the backup from the beginning of the season helps, and McDermott as the lone depth piece after GVR and Alex Lewis are jettisoned makes sense.

Cap Space after Internal Moves:$59.1
Draft Picks after Trade & Cuts: 4, 10, 35, 69, 108, 114, 144, 148, 174

Free Agency
TE Hayden Hurst (3 years/13.5M/9M guaranteed)
Hurst is a high-upside swing at TE: I don’t think Dalton Schultz hits the market and I’m admittedly worried about paying big money to the 4th option in a pass-heavy offense. Ditto for CJ Uzomah, who has the added red flag of coming off a knee injury. Hurst had 56 catches for 571 yards and 6 TDs in 2020 and remains a steady pass catcher and a good run blocker. Adding him in free agency means you get a young TE with a track record of being productive without breaking the bank. I think this is a Douglas-like signing.

OG Brandon Scherff (3 years/54M/26M guaranteed)
Joe Douglas’s white whale, and the veteran that fortifies this OL and turns it from potentially average to very good. Friend Of The Site David Wyatt-Hupton shared a stat that showed a majority of the pressure Zach Wilson faced last year coming from the RG and RT position. Operating under the premise that Mehki Becton will start at RT, the Jets need to strengthen the right side of the OL even more. Enter the veteran guard who has been linked to the Jets every time he is about to hit free agency, and who is coming off a year where he allowed precisely zero sacks. Plugging Scherff into the RG position with a healthy Becton jumps this unit into the top half of the league easily.

S Xavier Woods (4 years/32M/25.6M guaranteed)
I’d love for Douglas to steal Marcus Williams from the Saints, but I just don’t believe he will pony up the bag needed to secure him. Instead, I think he opts for a smaller name who is also young and productive. Woods left the Cowboys for the Vikings, and promptly racked up a 100 tackle and 3 interception season. Adding him improves both your run defense and the back-end of an incredibly young secondary.

CB Carlton Davis (3 years/45M/27M guaranteed)
The Jets desperately need a veteran corner who thrives in man to man coverage, and luckily for them their 2nd big ticket purchase of the offseason does exactly that. The former 2nd round pick only allowed 8.9 yards per target and was top 10 in pass break-ups. Adding Davis to the corner group slides Bryce Hall down to the 2nd corner, leaves the other Michael Carter in the slot, and lets you see if any of the young corners you drafted last year can take Hall’s place/be more than depth.

EDGE Dorance Armstrong, Jr (3 years/27M/13.5M guaranteed)
Only 6 sacks last year, but you’re banking on Armstrong, Jr. wanting to be more than just a situational pass rusher. This contract is indicative of you trying to cash in on an ascending player who you believe can be developed into more. His positional flexibility also gives you insurance for Carl Lawson.

Cap Space after Free Agency: $18.6M

NFL Draft

With the 4th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Oregon EDGE Kayvon Thibadeaux
The 2nd best player in this class, in my opinion, and a no-brainer at 4. Signing Scherff in free agency means I don’t have to take an OL if I don’t want to. I think the first 3 picks end up being Ikem Ekwonu, Aidan Hutchinson, and Kyle Hamilton. Two of those are mistakes, and the Jets are beneficiaries of them. Adding Kayvion to this defense will have the same impact Nick Bosa did to the 49ers defense, and I think Douglas and Robert Saleh realize that.

TRADE:
The New York Jets trade the 10th pick overall to the Philadelphia Eagles for the 16th and 19th picks in the 1st round
Sitting at 10 is nice, but being able to trade back and net another first rounder is even better. This is especially true if Douglas uses pick 38 to get a veteran WR instead of paying for one in free agency, which I think he does. Moving six spots back is a small price to pay.

With the 16th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Iowa C Tyler Linderbaum
The best C prospect since Ryan Kelly falling right into your lap? That is a dream for Joe Douglas and Robert Saleh, because it helps you both in the immediate (you can cut or trade Connor McGovern and save $9M) and long-term (he will develop with Zach Wilson). Linderbaum is the final piece that takes a potentially very good Jets OL to a potentially elite OL. You, also, take him in a much more reasonable slot than the top 10 folks are clamoring for him in.

With the 19th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Georgia LB Nakobe Dean
With the third first rounder of this draft for the Jets, they give Defensive Coordinator Jeff Ulbricht CJ Mosley’s running mate. A leader who can defend the run and pass and who can be deployed as a blitzer, Dean is a high-IQ player that upgrades this linebacking group immensely. In Ulbricht’s 4-2-5 looks, a defense featuring Carl Lawson, John Franklyn-Myers, Quinnen Williams, and Kayvon Thubadeaux up front, Mosley and Dean as the linebackers, and CDavis, Hall, Carter, Woods, and either Ashtyn Davis or one of the safety picks below has scary potential.

TRADE:
The New York Jets trade the 35th pick in the NFL Draft to the Atlanta Falcons for the 43rd and 58th picks in the NFL Draft
Another trade that nabs another pick in the same round. Same logic as above: if Douglas gives up the 38th pick for a veteran, then he’s going to try and get more picks. This allows him to do just that.

With the 43rd pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Colorado State TE Trey McBride
Adding Hayden Hurst is a step in the right direction in regards to improving the TE group, but drafting Trey McBride is THE step. While he still has room to grow as a route runner, he will help immediately in the red zone given his 6’4″ 260 pound frame. He’s got good hands, enjoys contact, and being able to develop behind Hurst before taking over full-time gives the Jets time to develop his blocking skills (they’re not good).

With the 58th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Iowa State RB Breece Hall
The theme of the 2nd round is to help Zach, and Breece Hall does exactly that. Pairing him with Michael Carter gives you two backs with three-down ability who, behind this OL, can take it to the house. He’s also a good pass catcher and, while you’d like to see him be more decisive when toting the rock, represents the high-upside leadership player Saleh likes.

TRADE:
The New York Jets trade the 69th pick in the NFL Draft to the Cleveland Browns for the 78th and 98th picks in the NFL Draft
Similar to the two trades above, this is a trade back to both stay in the same round you’re in and nab an additional asset in the same round.

With the 78th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets draft Georgia OG Jamaree Salyer
The heir apparent to Brandon Scherff comes by way of the slayer from Athens. Too often the Jets haven’t drafted the middle class of their roster and, in turn, when veterans fall off cliffs no reinforcements come. This pick prevents that, as does another pick later on. Salyer is a very good prospect that folks will underthink, but he is a finisher in the run game and will develop into a starter long-term.

With the 98th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets draft Florida DL Zachary Carter
See above regarding replenishing the middle class. Zachary Carter is the insurance piece for John Franklyn Myers in case the contract given out was a mistake. Carter is a power rusher who will probably do most of his damage inside behind JFM or rotating in at DE. He’s got active hands, and good pop, and he processes information really well.

With the 109th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets draft Penn State CB Tariq Castro-Fields
The Jets take another swing at corner on day 3, but I like Castro-Fields more than I liked Pinnock or Echols. He’s got the size and physicality to excel in man: he actually reminds me of Bryce Hall in that regard, but with the versatility to move between man and zone seamlessly.

TRADE:
The New York Jets trade the 12th pick in the 4th round to the San Francisco 49ers for the 29th picks in the 4th and 5th rounds and the 33rd pick in the 7th round
Netting two extra picks to drop 17 spots feels like a Joe Douglas move.

TRADE:
The New York Jets trade the 29th pick in the 4th round to the Jacksonville Jaguars for a 2023 4th rounder
Trading that 4th rounder for a 2023 pick ALSO feels like a Joe Douglas move.

With the 142nd pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets draft Virginia Tech WR Tre Turner
While not a complete route runner just yet, Turner is able to create separation and can slot in as a developmental number five WR early on. He’s got good footwork and displays good run after catch ability, which the Jets prioritize in their WRs.

With the 146th pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Central Michigan OT Luke Goedeke
You need George Fant insurance in case Fant reverts back to being the player he was in 2020 and you have to slide Becton back to LT. Enter the 6’4″ 318 pound monster from Central Michigan. In watching him, what stood out to me was his consistent hand placement and a really good use of his anchor to finish blocks. He is a powerful blocker that could be a good RT at the next level.

With the 172nd pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Oregon S Verone McKinley III

With the 252nd pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Jets select Miami S Bubba Bolden

These two picks, the final ones of the draft for Joe Douglas, add two young safeties to a group that hasn’t gotten alot from Ashtyn Davis. Paying Xavier Woods gives you the safety that can play closer to the box, and one of these two young men can roam the back-end. Both have the versatility Ulbricht craves, and both can contribute on special teams.

Depth Chart Post-Draft:

Offense
QB: Zach Wilson, Joe Flacco
RB: Michael Carter, Breece Hall, Ty Johnson
FB: Trevon Wesco
WR: Jerry Jeudy, Corey Davis, Elijah Moore, Braxton Berrios, Tre Turner, Jeff Smith
TE: Hayden Hurst, Trey McBride
OT: George Fant, Mehki Becton, Luke Goedeke
OG: Brandon Scherff, Alijah Vera Tucker, Jamaree Salyer, Conor McDermott
C: Tyler Linderbaum, Conor McGovern

Defense
DL: Quinnen Williams, John Franklyn Myers, Jonathan Marshall, Zachary Carter
EDGE: Carl Lawson, Kayvon Thibadeaux, Dorian Armstrong, Jr., Bradlee Anee
LB: CJ Mosley, Nakobe Dean, Hamsah Nasirdeen, Jamien Sherwood
CB: Carlton Davis, Bryce Hall, Michael Carter, Brandon Echols, Tariq Castro-Fields, Justin Hardee
S: Xavier Woods, Bubba Bolden, Verone McKinley III, Ashtyn Davis

Previously On Badlands:

The Badlands Mega Deep Dive Is Here!

Author: Dalbin Osorio

Dalbin Osorio is a Case Planner for Graham-Windham, New York's oldest child welfare agency. He is, also, a student at the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College. Dalbin graduated from Monroe College with a degree in Business Administration. A 3 sport utility man in high school (think a mix of Jerome WIlliams, Brad Smith, and Jayson Nix), he joined TOJ in 2013.

TOJ’s 1st & 10: The Super Bowl’s Guide to the Offseason for the New York Jets

Stephen Russo previews the Jets offseason.

1st…

We are more than a week removed from Super Bowl LVI, which means that we are only about 3 weeks away from OUR Super Bowl: the offseason. Free Agency officially starts on March 16th at 4pm, and while every Jets fan out there prepares for the most exciting time of the year for us, we all long for the day that we are mentally preparing ourselves for our appearance in a Super Bowl. I am 100% certain that every Jets fan, in one way or another, was imagining how they would act on the big day. Would I allow other people at my house? Would I be too nervous to eat? Would I have to watch in solitude? What kind of time off from work would I have to take the following week to either celebrate or wallow in despair? No? Ok, maybe that was just me.

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TOJ New York Jets Dream Off-season: DA’s V1

It’s that time of the offseason: Dream Off-season time. As we barrel towards the start of the league year, we figured it was time to get y’all ready for what should be a busy off-season for the New York Jets. As always, I utilized Fanspeak.

Internal Roster Moves:

Trade WR Denzel Mims and the 17th pick in the 5th round to the Philadelphia Eagles for the 19th pick in the 4th round: writing is on the wall, and this will probably be one of the 1st moves Douglas makes this off-season.

Cuts:
EDGE Shaq Lawson (save 9M)
OG Greg Van Roten (save 3.5M)
TE Ryan Griffin (save 3M)

*3 easy decisions made easier by who you aim to replace them with.*

Cap Space At Start of League Year: $69.8M

Resign:
QB Joe Flacco (1 year/7M/7M guaranteed)
WR Keelan Cole (2 years/8M/6M guaranteed)
Cole is good depth and has ST experience so he can replace Berrios in that regard, and Flacco should’ve been the backup all along.

Cap Space Entering Free Agency: $59.6M

Free Agency:
Maxx Williams (TE), 4 years/28M deal/16M guaranteed: only had 16 catches last year, but you’re banking on him finally being healthy and still being young enough to break out.

Laken Tomlinson (G), 5 years/50M deal/35M guaranteed: familiarity with the scheme and hits the market at 30 years old coming off his best season.

Foyesade Oluokun (LB), 4 years/30M deal/18M guaranteed: coming off back to back 100+ tackle seasons with 2+ INTs, and knows Ulbricht’s scheme.

Taron Johnson (CB), 3 years/27M deal/21.6M guaranteed: 3 sacks from the corner position this year, excels in man to man, and is 25 years old.

Marcus Williams (S), 4 years/52M/36.4M guaranteed: best safety on the market, 15 career INTs, and immediately upgrades the back end of this Jets defense

Chris Godwin (WR), 4 years/68M deal/54.4M guaranteed: coming off both a career high in catches and an ACL injury, gives Zach another weapon in the passing game, and immediately vaults your pass catchers into best in the league discussion

Harold Landry (EDGE), 4 years/52M/26.2M guaranteed: coming off a 12 sack season, will pair with Carl Lawson to give the Jets two productive pass rushers off the edge, and is still only 25.

The name of the game, Tomlinson aside, was in nabbing free agents on the younger side who had proven production. It allows for Douglas and Saleh to enter the draft with premium flexibility, and let’s them leave the draft with high upside/safe floor prospects who can come in and contribute.

Draft:

TRADES

Trade Partner: Cleveland Browns
Sent: Round 7 Pick 29
Received: Future Round 6 Pick

Trade Partner: Baltimore Ravens
Sent: Round 1 Pick 4
Received: Round 1 Pick 14, Round 2 Pick 13, Round 3 Pick 35

Trade Partner: Pittsburgh Steelers
Sent: Round 1 Pick 14
Received: Round 1 Pick 20 & Round 3 Pick 20

Trade Partner: Atlanta Falcons
Sent: Round 6 Pick 27
Received: Future Round 5 Pick

Trade Partner: Philadelphia Eagles
Sent: Round 5 Pick 20 & WR Denzel Mims
Received: Round 4 Pick 19

Trade Partner: Denver Broncos
Sent: Round 4 Pick 19
Received: Round 5 Pick 9, Round 6 Pick 27, Round 7 Pick 21, and Round 7 Pick 29

Trade Partner: Dallas Cowboys
Sent: Round 5 Pick 3
Received: Future Round 5 Pick

I wanted future picks, so I nab three day 3 picks for 2022. Once Kayvion was gone at 4, trading back is what made the most sense since taking Evan Neal after signing Tomlinson is not an option. I’ve said repeatedly that whoever the Jets take at 4 has to be able to play guard long-term and, given Neal’s size, I’m not sure Neal can. Signing Tomlinson locks that position down with a veteran anyway (something to watch for the Jets). So I go from 4 to 14 and pick up an extra 2nd and 3rd from the Ravens.

Picks:
10: R1 P10 C Tyler Linderbaum – Iowa: fortifies the OL and let’s you cut McGovern post-draft now that you’ve secured his replacement. An OL of Fant, AVT, Linderbaum, Tomlinson, and Becton is a very good OL on paper, if Becton shows up in shape.

20: R1 P20 LB Devin Lloyd – Utah: CJ Mosley’s running mate, able to be deployed in 3 LB packages right away. A base 4-3 defense of Lawson, Williams, Leal, Landry, Mosley, Lloyd, and Oluokun that gives Ulbricht the ability to move his pieces around on the back-end.

35: R2 P3 WR Chris Olave – Ohio State: insurance for Corey Davis, and Corey’s eventual replacement. 4 pass catcher sets featuring Godwin, Davis, Olave, and Moore (who all can be moved around the formation) gives LaFleur the same flexibility mentioned above re: Ulbricht.

38: R2 P6 S Jaquan Brisker – Penn State: Marcus Williams’s long-term running mate and able to start week one. Williams and Brisket’s skill sets compliment each other well.

45: R2 P13 DL DeMarvin Leal – Texas A&M: too good a player to pass up at this point in the draft, and another monster on the DL.

69: R3 P5 EDGE Arnold Ebiketie – Penn State: high ceiling edge who can provide juice on pass rushing situations standing up or with his hand on the dirt. Formations where he replaces Landry with his hand in the dirt, while Landry and Lloyd are the 2 LBs in 4-2-5 looks? Whew.

84: R3 P20 RB Tyler Allgeier – BYU: the power to Carter’s speed, and a familiar face for Zach.

99: R3 P35 TE Jeremy Ruckert – Ohio State: with him and Maxx Williams, you improve your pass game and run game. In the red zone, being able to go Ruckert and Williams with Godwin and Davis gives Zach four big targets. Imagine a jetsweep in the red zone with Elijah Moore, and his lead blocker is Ruckert.

110: R4 P6 OT Tyler Smith – Tulsa: Mehki Becton or George Fant insurance, should be a starter in this league. Smith could replace Fant if the Jets opt to move on from him after next season.

116: R4 P12 CB Jaylen Watson – Washington State: better CB right now than Brandon Echols.

152: R5 P9 WR Justyn Ross – Clemson: too good value to pass up in R5, and could serve as Chris Godwin insurance in case he isn’t 100%. Ross gives the Jets something they haven’t really had: a developmental WR with high upside. Long-term, you could have a WR trio of Olave, Moore, and Ross, who develop with Zach into his 2nd contract.

240: R7 P21 K Cameron Dicker – Texas: a black hole for the Jets

Projected Depth Chart Entering Training Camp, with 11 roster spots to fill:

Offense:
QB: Zach Wilson, Joe Flacco
RB: Michael Carter, Tyler Allgeier ®, Ty Johnson
WR: Chris Godwin, Corey Davis, Elijah Moore, Chris Olave (R), Keelan Cole, Justyn Ross ®
TE: Jeremy Ruckert ®, Maxx Williams, Kenny Yeobah
OT: George Fant, Mehki Becton, Tyler Smith ®
OG: Alijah Vera Tucker, Laken Tomlinson
C: Conor McGovern, Tyler Linderbaum ®

Defense:
DL: Quinnen Williams, Sheldon Rankins, John Franklyn-Myers, DeMarvin Leal (R), Jonathan Marshall
EDGE: Carl Lawson, Harold Landry, Arnold Ebiketie ®
LB: CJ Mosley, Foyesade Oluokun, Devin Lloyd (R), Jamien Sherwood, Hamsah Nasirdeen
CB: Bryce Hall, Taron Johnson, Michael Carter, Jaylen Watson ®, Brandon Echols
S: Marcus Williams, Jaquan Brisker (R), Ashtyn Davis

TOJ Pod ft. PFF_Steve

Will Parkinson interviews PFF_Steve on this episode of the TOJ Podcast.

On this episode of the Turn on the Jets podcast, host Will Parkinson is joined Senior NFL Analyst Steve Palazzolo of Pro Football Focus to discuss how the Jets can replicate the Bengals rebuild, and where and who the Jets should look to be going after in Free Agency, Trades and the Draft this off-season.

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The TOJ Crew has kicked off our offseason preview with each writer talking about a free agent option for each position. In this edition, TOJ Live co-host Stephen Zantz will make the case for adding Jessie Bates to upgrade the safety room.

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Will Parkinson on the no-brainer Jets FA WR target.

Let me start this off by saying there is a negative 37% chance this happens…but there is only one true answer to which wide receivers the Jets should be targeting in free agency and that’s Davante Adams. The 29 year old had 123 receptions, 1553 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2021 and is pretty clearly the best player at his position in the NFL.

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