The 2021 offseason for the New York Jets was a busy one. Arguably the biggest of the New York Jets additions isn’t one who steps directly onto the field. The Jets finally moved on from the train wreck that was the Adam Gase regime. They replaced Gase with a fiery defensive mind in Robert Saleh. He and general manager Joe Douglas had their work cut out for them, but they also had the resources to work with.
The team entered with a lot of salary cap space and draft picks. As a result, many new players were acquired. In free agency, the Jets signed eleven players. Then, in the draft, ten players were added. Some of these free agents and draft picks will be expected to contribute this season. Here are four with the chance to make the most instant impact.
New York Jets Additions: Defense
Carl Lawson will be expected to deliver from the jump for the Jets. A dominant edge rusher has been a need for the Jets for many years. Lawson has great potential to put that to an end.
Last season was the best year Lawson played in the NFL. This season, he should build on that. He has all the talent to be a force.
Lawson has speed and bend as a pass rusher built low to the ground. He should be an integral piece for the Jets right away and hopefully for many years. Expect Lawson to make an instant impact on the Jets’ defense.
New York Jets Additions: Offense
The Jets made a big trade early in the draft and selected Alijah Vera-Tucker. He is a young and exciting prospect. Vera-Tucker will be called upon to start at left guard in Week One.
In college at USC, Vera-Tucker got experience at both tackle and guard. He had great success as a pass blocker in both roles. Vera-Tucker also has the athletic ability to fit the zone running scheme the Jets will be installing perfectly.
Vera-Tucker was considered one of the safer prospects in the 2021 NFL Draft. It will be fun to see him and Mekhi Becton as talented young players on the left side of the offensive line. Vera-Tucker should be a long-term contributor for the Jets who starts making an immediate impact in 2021.
The Jets selected Zach Wilson second overall in the draft. There is tremendous excitement surrounding the potential of Wilson with his talent. Wilson has the chance to put the Jets’ long need for a franchise quarterback to an end.
Wilson has great arm talent. He can throw the football from multiple arm angles, and his arm strength is as good as it gets. Wilson has accuracy in and out of the pocket. He can also make plays with his mobility.
It will be very exciting to see Wilson in his rookie season. Wilson will be expected to show good things right away as a rookie. Hopefully, Wilson is the answer for the Jets at quarterback for many years to come and he starts proving that this season.
The Jets signed Corey Davis in free agency, a huge addition to a thin receiving corps. Davis just had his best pro season with the Tennessee Titans. He played great football and should build on it moving forward.
Davis has great size; he should help the passing game on the intermediate level. He should be a great possession receiver for Wilson as a young quarterback. Davis will also help as a blocker in the running game. His ability as a blocking threat could help open things up off play-action over the middle.
Expect Davis to make an instant impact for the Jets. He will have a ton of opportunities to help the passing game attain success. Newly-signed Davis is already one of the Jets better players, he will help immediately.
New York Jets Additions: Conclusion
Two new additions that were strongly considered were Elijah Moore and Justin Hardee. Moore is a supremely talented receiver out of the University of Mississippi. He should help the Jets offense as a rookie.
Hardee will be a core special teams contributor. Also, he can help improve the culture of the Jets which is crucial. Multiple members of the New Orleans Saints had great things to say about the presence of Hardee. He should impact the Jets culture instantly.
The Jets certainly added talent this offseason. Expect some of the free-agent additions and draft picks to contribute early in their Jets careers.