Analysis

New York Jets Free Agency Outlook

New York Jets Free Agency Outlook

The New York Jets managed to double their 2020 win total in 2021 but still remained a toothless opponent for most teams. The Jets missed the playoffs for the eleventh consecutive season, and while they did see some positive flashes, it’s clear plenty of work needs to be done. The Jets began the season 2-8 as they scored just 20 total points over the first three weeks as rookie quarterback Zach Wilson struggled immensely out the gate. He played better as the season wore on, and the Jets managed to notch two more victories in the second half of the season. Rookie running back Michael Carter had nearly 1,000 yards from scrimmage in just 14 games and middle linebacker C.J. Mosley racked up 168 combined tackles after playing just two total games in the previous two seasons. The Jets have over $48 million in cap space, third-most in the league, as they look to add experience and talent to what was the third-youngest roster in the league entering 2021.

Jets’ Impending Free Agents

RT Morgan Moses

WR Keelan Cole

WR Jamison Crowder

DT Folorunso Fatukasi

WR Braxton Berrios

RG Laurent Duvernay-Tardif

DT Nathan Shepherd

TE Tyler Kroft

S Marcus Maye

LB Jarrad Davis

LG Dan Feeney

RB Tevin Coleman

RG Conor McDermott

S Will Parks

QB Joe Flacco

FB Nick Bawden

K Eddy Pineiro

TE Daniel Brown

S Lamarcus Joyner

CB Ken Webster

LT Greg Senat

DE Kyle Phillips (RFA)

QB Mike White (RFA)

The Jets lack many notable free agents and tackle Morgan Moses is the only free agent who played more than 52% of snaps. Moses started 16 games for the Jets and was serviceable at right tackle. As I’ve said before, any offensive lineman with a pulse is sure to draw interest in free agency and Moses is no exception. The Jets do have wide receiver Jamison Crowder set to hit free agency, along with fellow wideouts Keelan Cole and Braxton Berrios (who was first-team All-Pro as a kick returner). Crowder and Berrios had the most receptions on the team and Berrios in particular will be a hot commodity thanks to his return acumen. Safety Marcus Maye was franchise-tagged prior to the 2021 season and played in just six games before suffering a torn Achilles. A reunion is certainly possible but a fresh start is likely the best outcome for both parties.

Franchise Tag

The Jets did not use the franchise tag by the March 8th deadline. New York has used the franchise tag twice since 2014 – on defensive end Muhammed Wilkerson in 2016 and on safety Marcus Maye in 2021. 

Team Needs

  1. Offensive Line
  2. Wide Receiver
  3. Safety
  4. Outside Linebacker
  5. Tight End
  6. Edge Depth

New York has plenty of holes on its roster and both sides of the ball are in need of serious reinforcements. The offensive line is replete with question marks, especially after 2020 11th overall pick Mekhi Becton played in just one game in 2021 due to a knee injury. Considered a potential franchise left tackle after 2020, last season saw a precipitous decline. Wide receiver remains a significant hole as offseason acquisition Corey Davis played just nine uninspiring games while rookie Elijah Moore looks to be a solid #2 wideout. Safety hasn’t been a position of strength and losing Maye weakens the group even further. The linebacker spot next to C.J. Mosely was a revolving door for the Jets in 2021 and the Jets would love either one of their late-round rookies from last year (Jamien Sherwood & Hamsah Nasirildeen) to step up. Tight end has been a neglected position and the pairing of Ryan Griffin and Tyler Kroft doesn’t cut it, while pass-rushing depth would help the team as Carl Lawson recovers from a ruptured Achilles’ tendon.

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