As common supervisor Joe Douglas and the New York Jets proceed to conduct their interview course of for a brand new head coach, NFL free company is on the proverbial again burner. However as soon as that new coach is chosen, he and Douglas sooner or later will sit down and start to map out their technique.
And though Douglas may have closing say, the brand new man actually may have enter.
Douglas confirmed in his first foray into free company in 2020 that he has a value level with sure gamers that he received’t go above. However he later additionally chastised himself publicly for not doing a greater job. It is going to be attention-grabbing to see how he approaches it this time round.
Here’s a take a look at the important thing unrestricted free brokers Douglas and the brand new rent will likely be discussing as soon as this interview course of has been accomplished (2020 salary-cap determine in parentheses, by way of overthecap.com):
Free security Marcus Maye ($2,085,368): This looks as if a straightforward resolution, contemplating the very fact Douglas already labeled re-signing Maye as a “precedence” in his latest media session. Maye, a second-round choose in 2017, had two interceptions and 11 move breakups in 2020, together with one which sealed the Jets’ first win of the season.
Douglas is right. On a staff that also has many holes, Maye is a stable, regular performer who continues to turn into an excellent cowl security. His statistics might have been damage this previous season by the Jets’ and then-defensive coordinator Gregg Williams’ ill-advised resolution to play him at robust security early within the season to switch the traded Jamal Adams. His two sacks within the season opener at Buffalo appeared to justify it within the Jets’ eyes, however they proved to be his solely two sacks of the yr. He’s extra suited to play a deep position in protection, and thus needs to be utilized that approach.
It is going to be fascinating to see how intense the bidding for Maye’s companies is.
Vast receiver Breshad Perriman ($6.4375 million): Accidents and the shortcomings of third-year quarterback Sam Darnold contributed to a considerably lackluster season for Perriman, who nonetheless averaged 16.eight yards on 30 receptions. It is price noting that every one three of his touchdowns got here on passes from strong-armed backup Joe Flacco.
If the Jets transfer on from Darnold, it nonetheless is likely to be price re-signing Perriman to a different one-year deal. Regardless of the accidents, the velocity and route-running potential nonetheless is there, as he confirmed within the three video games he performed with Flacco.
Slot cornerback Brian Poole ($4.9375 million): Poole has signed two consecutive one-year offers with the Jets, however New York possible must pony up for an extended contract regardless of the very fact he was misplaced for the season in 2020 after 9 video games due to shoulder and knee accidents.
Each with the Jets and Atlanta, Poole has been a gentle performer, and once more, contemplating they lack such gamers at many positions, the Jets can not afford to half with good gamers. It is going to be attention-grabbing to see how consideration Poole elicits on the open market.
Edge rusher Jordan Jenkins ($3.9375 million): Jenkins missed the final three video games of the season with a shoulder drawback, virtually assuredly ending his time with the Jets. As I broke it down right here over a yr in the past, Jenkins’ restricted effectiveness as a one-on-one edge rusher makes it a questionable proposition to re-sign him. He drew little curiosity on the open market final yr till the Jets re-signed him in April, and they need to transfer on in order that youthful gamers equivalent to Bryce Huff and Jabari Zuniga can get extra enjoying time.
Edge rusher Tarell Basham ($825,000): Basham is one other participant who ought to get enjoying time in lieu of Jenkins, which is why he needs to be re-signed. Basham had 3.5 sacks and three pressured fumbles in 2020 and has proven promise as a move rusher and total disruptor.
Security Bradley McDougald ($4.06875 million): McDougald, who came visiting from Seattle within the Adams commerce, was having a subpar season earlier than being placed on injured reserve due to a shoulder drawback after seven video games. He possible received’t be re-signed.
Inside linebacker Neville Hewitt ($2 million): Hewitt grew to become a key determine within the Jets’ protection after the opt-out of star C.J. Mosley and carried out pretty nicely, recording a team-high 134 tackles, though he was higher in opposition to the run than in protection. Hewitt performed 99.2% of the defensive snaps in 2020 and is likely to be suited to extra of a two-down fairly than every-down position as soon as Mosley returns, however the Jets positively ought to hold him round.
Operating again Frank Gore ($750,000): From an inspirational standpoint, Gore’s story was good. From a soccer standpoint, it made no sense. The Jets want backs who can common greater than 3.5 yards per carry, dwelling legends or not. Adam Gase is gone; Gore needs to be too.
Quarterback Joe Flacco ($1.5625 million): This one will likely be as much as Flacco, actually. Would he be thinking about returning? He confirmed sufficient in his final two begins, it might appear, to show he nonetheless may very well be a viable hold-the-fort starter for a staff transitioning to a youthful quarterback. If the Jets transfer on from Darnold and draft a signalcaller, maybe he can be keen to remain on because the bridge quarterback. In that case, Douglas ought to pursue it. Extra possible, Flacco will search a staff the place he legitimately can compete for a beginning gig.
Security Matthias Farley ($1,218,750): Farley did an honest job down the stretch, and the Jets actually want depth on the place. He needs to be introduced again.
Defensive again Arthur Maulet ($772,058): Maulet was used at boundary nook, slot nook and security, and didn’t impress in any position. It is likely to be time to maneuver on.
Proper guard Josh Andrews ($750,000): An harm to starter Greg Van Roten pressed Andrews right into a beginning position for the final three video games, and he didn’t fare nicely. The Jets can do higher for a swing backup, until they really feel it was an anomaly.
Left guard Pat Elflein ($878,294): Elflein was claimed off waivers from Minnesota in November. He shortly grew to become a starter after Alex Lewis was positioned on the non-football harm checklist, and whereas Elflein had his moments, he was fairly erratic. Lewis had a falling out with ex-coach Gase, in keeping with a supply, and with Gase gone, the Jets ought to pivot again to the extra gifted Lewis, who has two years left on his contract and a not unreasonable 2021 cap determine of $7,033,333.