All offseason long, one main question on the New York Jets roster was the safety position. At least one new starter had to be acquired through either free agency or the draft. Early in free agency, Jets general manager Joe Douglas signed Jordan Whitehead. He will start at strong safety. No free safety was added with one of the seven draft picks the Jets made. It has left fans wondering who will take the job.
Shortly before the start of free agency, the Jets did re-sign veteran safeties Lamarcus Joyner and Will Parks. The other notable players a part of the safety group are now second and third-year players in Jason Pinnock, Ashtyn Davis, and Elijah Riley. All of these potential options made an unknown that much greater.
Earlier today at OTA’s, it was reported by Connor Hughes that Pinnock was the one working with the starters at safety.
#Jets starting 7-on-7s. Bryce Hall, DJ Reed, Mike Carter, Jordan Whitehead, Pinnock in the secondary
— Connor Hughes (@Connor_J_Hughes) May 24, 2022
Noteworthy information on Pinnock:
Pinnock is still only 22-years-old, he will turn 23 at the end of June. The Jets drafted Pinnock in the fifth round, 175th overall in the 2021 draft. Originally, he was drafted as a cornerback, where he played in college at Pittsburgh. On the outside at corner last year, Bryce Hall and Brandin Echols were the two starters. Javelin Guidry was the primary backup. As a result, Pinnock took most of his snaps as a rookie at safety.
The Jets were decimated by injuries at safety all of last season. Eventually, it led to an opportunity for Pinnock to start the last three games. He ended up showing some intriguing promise. Over his three starts, he forced two fumbles and had a pass defended. Throughout those three weeks, Pinnock earned an 80.7 PFF grade. This placed him fourth among all safeties over the three-week timespan.
Interestingly enough, when Pinnock was made available to the media last December, he stated he feels more comfortable at safety.
“That’s where I’m at in this scheme. That’s where I feel most comfortable and that’s where I’m most comfortable at, and I’ll continue to roll from there. And now with an offseason where I can be more intentional with my work, I’m looking forward to it.”
Clearly, the Jets look at Pinnock similarly themselves. Late last season, head coach Robert Saleh had this to say about Pinnock’s position switch:
“We just look at Pinnock – his size, length, speed, his athleticism – we’re like, man, he’d be a really cool free safety, Jimmie Ward-type in our system.”
To see Pinnock working with the starting team in this offseason workout period is not a total shock. If he can continue to build on his strong performances from the end of last season, it would take care of a position of concern and go a long way with the Jets’ revamped secondary.