This is the most important offseason for the New York Jets and the regime of Robert Saleh and Joe Douglas. They need to use all three avenues to upgrade their roster: trades, free agency, and the draft.
Mark this date and time on your calendar: Noon ET, March 14. That is when what has become known as the “legal tampering” period begins. Agents can work out deals with teams, even though they don’t become “official” until 4 PM ET on March 16.
The Jets enter the 2022 offseason needing to fill quite a few holes, and it begins with the free agency period.
So, who should Douglas, Saleh, and the pro scouting staff come to a conclusion to target as their top players? Let’s dive in.
5. James Daniels, Right Guard
The Jets need to come away with a starting guard and depth on the offensive line this offseason. Daniels is the one player in the offensive line market – at interior offensive line – that fits perfectly into the Jets system.
His athleticism is perfect for the system Mike LaFleur wants to deploy, and he would absolutely help round out the line. At 25 years old heading into the season, he’d also be a long-term solution at the position and another quality veteran presence in the position group.
4. Quandre Diggs, Safety
Whether it’s Cover 3 or Quarters, Diggs has a great combination of range and instincts to play in this scheme. They did play a substantial amount of man coverage, but the Jets defense is based on zone concepts.
The Jets undoubtedly need to add two safeties, and while Marcus Williams is the talk of Jets fans, Diggs is the better fit, because he is more adept at playing multiple coverages, whereas, Williams is better suited for Cover 2.
3. Odell Beckham, Jr., Wide Receiver
Adding Beckham, Jr. to the mix would create a potency on offense the Jets haven’t had in a long time. The combination of ball skills, separation ability, and speed, would give the Jets something they desperately need, a complimentary receiver to Elijah Moore.
The duo of OBJ and Moore would create matchup issues, especially when lined up on the same side. Also, having three wide receivers — including Corey Davis — who can play slot or outside, would create even more problems for opposing defenses.
With the Rams, he proved that, when used correctly, teams can get his best. LaFleur would be able to figure out a way to get the best of OBJ.
2. Foyesade Oluokun, Off-ball Linebacker
The official roster page for the Atlanta Falcons lists Oluokun at 6’2″, 215 lbs. That’s a little bit undersized, but he has the talent to play in the system.
There are some deficiencies in his game, most notably shedding second-level blocks. However, he can make up for that particular deficiency with his speed and quickness to beat the block to a spot.
With his speed and instincts, he will limit runs both to the inside and outside. He’s also a quality coverage linebacker.
1. Chandler Jones, Edge Rusher
John Antonio Abraham is a name very well known to Jets fans. He last played a snap for the Jets in 2005. that was also the last time the Jets had a premier edge rusher.
Jones would fill that void. While he will be entering his age 32 season, he’s still capable of being an elite edge rusher. His hand usage, quickness, and ability to defeat offensive linemen in a myriad of ways are still off the charts.
The only issue would be convincing him to come here at his age, as he probably would like to add a Super Bowl ring to his likely Hall of Fame resume. That’s where Douglas and Saleh come in. Putting the right pieces together and showing Jones they have a plan that could help him achieve that goal is crucial.
Now is the time…
Now is the time for the Jets to finally take a huge step forward. Incremental steps aren’t good enough. This league is made for quick turnarounds. There are no more excuses for not landing free agents. It’s time for the Jets to be competitive in the AFC East, and for the general manager and head coach to be able to convince players that their plan is a good one. It’s time to make a huge splash.
Thanks for taking the time to read this article on the Jets’ top free-agent targets. Be sure to follow me on Twitter @generallyjets. Also, check out @OTH_Football on Twitter for all football coverage.
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