New York Jets: 2 players who could be traded before the deadline

The New York Jets are now 0-6 with yesterday’s loss to the Dolphins. Surprisingly, the amount of points they scored yesterday is the same amount of wins they still currently have. Okay, maybe it’s not that surprising.

On another note, it seems as though they are in full “sell” mode.

Jamal Adams, Le’Veon Bell, and most recently Steve McClendon, have all been removed from this team one way or another this season. It seems as though no one is safe right now, as linebacker Avery Williamson has already pointed out.

The Jets and general manager Joe Douglas appear to be leaning towards a rebuild now, potentially without Sam Darnold, but that’s a worn-out conversation already. So, let’s look at two other players that could be off the team come the deadline.

Jamison Crowder

Crowder is unarguably the team’s best receiver and potentially their best player overall. Through four games played, as he’s missed two, he’s totaled 29 receptions for 383 yards and 2 touchdowns. Before finishing with 48 yards yesterday, he was leading the NFL with 111.7 receiving yards per game.

His services could potentially come down to a bidding war among teams pushing for the playoffs this season, especially if they need a proven offensive piece. Crowder, who mostly lines up in the slot, wouldn’t force a team to make him the top target outside of the numbers. When he’s lined up in the slot, he’s been very productive and reliable.

Potential contenders, such as the Packers, would benefit instantly from acquiring him. However, injury-riddled teams, such as the Eagles, could be in play as well.

Being the team’s best asset at the moment, he would probably allow for the most return in any trade. Almost immediately after the Le’Veon Bell release, Crowder was named as one of two players on the trade block.

Brian Poole

With Crowder as one of two players named on the trade block, Poole joined him as the other. Poole is the Jets’ best cornerback, and it isn’t close. He was the ninth highest-graded cornerback in the entire league last season, according to Pro Football Focus. Also, before yesterday’s game, he was ranked fifth in the league with a coverage grade of 81.6.

Poole was re-signed in the offseason to a one-year, $5-million deal. If he’s dealt before the deadline, it’s most likely because of his contract. Corner-needy teams won’t have to spend any sort of drastic money for him, making him even more desirable.

Teams such as the Chiefs, Packers, Seahawks, Cardinals and Raiders could all upgrade their slot-corner position with Brian Poole, to name a few. That doesn’t mean that any of these teams go for him, but they are some potential teams to watch.

Right now, all the talk and rumors surrounding Jamison Crowder and Brian Poole is speculation, but with the direction things seem to be heading, they could realistically be gone before the end of the reason. If they are, it’ll be interesting to see what Joe Douglas can get in return.









New York Jets add former Air Force defensive back to ranks

New York Jets, Zane Lewis

The New York Jets have added a new piece to the secondary in the former track star and defensive back Zane Lewis. Lewis was signed by the Cardinals as a UDFA out of Air Force for the most money of any of the 21 UDFAs they brought on.

When watching him, a few key abilities show why he earned the money he did originally. His speed, versatility, and on-field production are big reasons why and why the Jets picked him up quickly.

How will Zane Lewis fit in with the New York Jets: 

At Air Force, Lewis played in 37 games with 94 tackles, 5 TFLs, and 2 INTs. In 2019, Zane played in all 13 of their games and put up 45 tackles and one pick. He also finished fourth in the Mountain West for pass deflections with 15 as well.

Lewis was a key contributor and leader for a squad that had their best year in a long time, finishing 11-2. Lewis received a lot of compliments during the pre-draft process for his coverage abilities and his vertical speed. His biggest flaws though, came when looking at his tackling. It was evident in watching him shortly that he needs to get better as a tackler to stick in the league.

With the Jets they have a lot of depth at corner currently. That doesn’t mean much, though. Aside from Pierre Desir, Bless Austin, and Brian Poole, there is no clear 4th option. If Lewis comes in and performs quickly, he could fight for that role at some point. Still, with his flaws, he will need to shape up quickly. If he does, the speedy corner could be a nice addition. 

Report: New York Jets signing veteran corner Logan Ryan to prove it deal

New York Jets, Logan Ryan, Tennessee Titans

Throughout this offseason, New York Jets GM Joe Douglas has been very active in signing players to prove it deals to attempt to fill critical needs. He’s also been very aggressive in trying to fill one of the Jets’ biggest voids. Last season the Jets’ cornerback group was one of the worst in football. With minimal depth and no proven entities, the Jets had to upgrade the position this the offseason.

They released Trumaine Johnson and Darryl Roberts, two bad signings from the old regime, and added Pierre Desir on a one year deal. They also brought back Brian Poole on a one year deal as well. The Jets still have Bless Austin, Nate Hairston, and Arthur Maulet, but they looked to upgrade the position in the draft.

The Jets then came out of the draft with two more new corners—Bryce Hall from Virginia and 23-year-old former second-rounder from the Colts, Quincy Wilson. Although there were reports before the draft of the Jets’ interest in CB Logan Ryan, it seemed as though the team was comfortable with their corners. Well, apparently they were not. The New York Jets have reportedly signed Logan Ryan to a one year deal per Manish Mehta of the NY Daily News.

Who is Logan Ryan?

As we’ve covered extensively here at ESM, Logan Ryan is a reliable veteran coming off a very successful season. Ryan is a hometown kid who attended Rutgers University. After a solid career there, Ryan was drafted in the 3rd Round of 2013 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. When Ryan debuted, he immediately carved himself a role with the Pats. Ryan was an excellent corner with them until he left in 2016.

He then joined the Titans, where he’s been coached by Mike Vrabel. He comes from a very good coaching tree, and he’s got a championship pedigree with two rings under his belt. Ryan is also 29 years old; he’s still got a few years of good football left. After remaining unsigned for the first two months or so of free agency, he now goes to a team in need of a reliable lead corner.

How Will Ryan Fit?

Logan Ryan is coming off a season where he had 113 tackles, 4 INTs, and 4 TFLs. In one of the best years of his career, he also picked off his former teammate, Tom Brady, in what was ultimately the last play of Brady’s time in New England. Now the former Patriot is coming home to the Jets.

Ryan will be tasked with leading a young cornerback group while also trying to perform well to earn himself a long term deal. What better coach to have with that pressure then one of the best defensive coordinators in the game, Gregg Williams. The opportunity to play under Gregg has been a critical reason that players like Brian Poole and Jordan Jenkins took such cheap deals to return to the Jets and is likely a reason Logan Ryan is coming to Gang Green. Williams gets the best out of his players, and he will try to do that with a veteran player who’s had a lot of success.

Even if this move bombs, the Jets have loads of young talent in the secondary that need mentorship. Bryce Hall and Bless Austin could both benefit from learning behind an experienced player, and even Quincy Wilson and Pierre Desir could pick up a thing or two from Ryan. Overall, the Jets have solidified their secondary for the upcoming season and formulated serious competition for the starting roles.

If there is anything you can pull from this offseason, it’s that Joe Douglas likes two things, leadership and establishing competition. By adding a talented player like Logan Ryan, he did just that. 

New York Jets Resign CB Brian Poole (Report)

New York Jets, Brian Poole

The New York Jets secondary was very weak last year. They didn’t have a true number one or two corner. They continuously rotated guys in the spots to see who, if any, could cover on the outside. At nickel corner, however, the Jets were set. Brian Poole had a career year for the Jets and according to PFF, was ranked as one of the top 10 best corners in the league. This made him a priority on the Jets list this offseason. Now, the Jets locked Poole up, according to The Athletic’s Connor Hughes.

The Contract

Locking Poole up may be an understatement– the Jets inked Poole to a one year, $5 million dollar deal. The deal is actually a win-win for both sides. The Jets get stability at the slot corner position for another year on a very good value deal. Poole gets $5 million and another shot to cash in next offseason. The Jets likely used the fact that last year was his best year as a negotiating tactic for the 27-year-old corner. The Jets will now get him back on a team-friendly deal and Poole gets to prove his worth yet again.

What do the Jets do next?

The Jets made Poole a priority and got him back. Now the Jets can turn their attention to adding an outside corner to pair with Bless Austin. The Jets will likely sign one bigger name corner and maybe add a few lower-level guys with good potential. The Jets can now turn their focus to the edge rusher spot and outside corner spots as previously noted, as they await Robby Anderson’s decision. If Anderson doesn’t resign then expect the Jets to move quickly to ink another receiver like Phillip Dorsett and turn their attention towards the other side of the ball.

New York Giants: 3 players to piece together the secondary in 2020

Byron Jones, Brian Poole, Devin McCourty, New York Giants

The New York Giants desperately need to piece together their secondary in 2020, and it starts with finding a No. 1 cornerback. Free agency will be their primary allocation regarding the defensive secondary, as they spent three draft picks on injecting youth into the unit last offseason.

With about $80 million in free agency, the Giants and GM Dave Gettleman will need to allocate at least $35 million to overhaul the unit with veteran experience and quality. Gettleman is keen on carrying $20 million over into the season for draft picks and in-season acquisitions. However, the upcoming class of free agents is strong in positions the Giants desperately need to invest in.

Here are three players the New York Giants should be looking into:

1.) Byron Jones

The first is clear-cut, as the Giants cannot go in 2020 with DeAndre Baker featuring as their No. 1 corner — he’s simply not prepared to take on a full seasons workload against top wide receivers. Allowing him to continue his development in a secondary role will be beneficial down the road, but creating a great tandem with Jones and Baker would be an ideal scenario for a secondary who hasn’t had an intimidating presence in years.

Jones is expecting to land about $17 million in free agency, which is a significant but worthwhile number. His lack of statistical output can correlate directly toward the lack of attention he gets from opposing quarterbacks. While he’s not the type of player who will rack up interceptions, he’s a skilled ball-swatter and has fluid hips in coverage. He limited star wideout for the Saints, Michael Thomas, to zero receptions in 2019.

2.) Devin McCourty

Inserting a veteran and familiar presence for new HC Joe Judge is why signing Devin McCourty makes a lot of sense. While he’s aging at 32-years-old, McCourty had another productive season in 2019, racking up five interceptions and 58 combined tackles. The Patriots had one of the best defenses in the NFL last season, and his knowledge is vital to the growth of the Giants’ unit, who are all mostly below the age of 23.

I anticipate the Giants can grab him on a two-year, $20 million deal with high guarantees. This is an ideal stop-gap for a few seasons, while the Giants collect assets to invest in a younger option down the road.

3.) Brian Poole

One intriguing prospect at the slot corner position is free agent Brian Poole, who featured on the Jets in 2019. Poole had a stellar campaign last year, posting a 62.5% completion percentage, up slightly from 57.1% in 2018. His statistical output attests to his quality, and the Giants are missing a quality starter at slot corner.

However, Julian Love could be the expected starter at the position moving forward — I don’t believe he’s ready for an everyday starting role, considering his 9.8% missed tackle rate. He did post a 65.5% completion percentage over 29 targets, but Poole beats him at the category having dealt with 64 targets and a 62.5% completion rate. I expect Poole to land anywhere from $6-8 million per season.

Overall, these three players would account for about $33 million in cap space but would overhaul the unit entirely.

How Good has the New York Jets Defense Been?

Don’t let the Jets scoring defense fool you. This team’s defense is among the best in the NFL.

The New York Jets are 20th in the NFL in points allowed per game with 23.5. If you just looked at that stat you would think the Jets had a below average defense. They aren’t stopping the other team from scoring so they must not be that good, that’s what many fans think of the Jets defense.

That’s simply not the case. The Jets have one of the elite defenses in the league. After holding a potent Raiders offense to just three points on Sunday they should the league how good they can be.

They now rank fifth in the NFL in total defense DVOA, 17th in passing defense DVOA, and second in run defense DVOA. Those are incredible numbers, especially that passing defense. The Jets starting CBs right now are rookie sixth-round pic Bless Austin and undrafted 3rd-year Arthur Maulet. The two of them, along with slot CB Brian Poole, held the Raiders to under 150 yards of passing offense. The Raiders came into the game last week with the seventh-best passing offense DVOA.

This was not a bottom of the barrel passing attack, this was one of the best in the NFL and the Jets shut it down. Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams deserves a world of credit for the work he’s put in this season. He has taken a battered and bruised defense to the top of the league.

This Jets defense traded Leonard Williams, hasn’t had either of their starting LBers for all but one game this season, is down to practice squad players at CB, and doesn’t have an edge rusher with more than five sacks this year. Gregg Williams doesn’t care about any of that. He has whipped this defense into shape no matter what the obstacle is.

So why are the Jets allowing so many points? They have the worst average starting field position in the NFL by a wide margin. Teams don’t need to move the ball that well at all to score points against them. The sad fact is that the Jets offense has been so bad that it puts their defense in a position to fail.

Yet, each and every week they go out and play at a high level. It truly is a testament to the work that Gregg Williams has done this season. It’s absolutely unbelievable that the Jets have a top-5 defense in the NFL, yet here we are.

It’s entirely possible that Gregg Williams will win the NFL’s coordinator of the year award. If he does it’s likely that he will find a head coaching job next season. The award has only existed since 2014, but four of the five winners of the ward went on to get head coach jobs in the next season. The only one who didn’t was Wade Phillips who had multiple failed head coaching runs already.

Hopefully, Gregg Williams is here next year to help lead the New York Jets defense into the future.  He’s certainly earned the right to do so.

The New York Jets Demolish Oakland Raiders 34-3

New York Jets, Sam Darnold

The New York Jets have won their third game in a row with a dominant all-around victory over the Oakland Raiders.

The Jets put up 34 points for a third straight week. They had everything working on offense, and that starts and ends with Sam Darnold. Despite a patchwork offensive line that only got more battered when Chuma Edoga went down early, Darnold and the Jets offense marched down the field with ease.

The Jets scored on all but two of their possessions in the first half. One of those possessions was a one-play kneel down, and the other was a missed 48-yard field goal.

It was complete domination. It only got better after the half. Darnold led the Jets down the field for an easy four-play 81-yard TD drive that was capped off with a Ryan Griffin TD. After the Raiders turned the ball over on downs the offense went right back to work. Darnold led another short 4-play possession that ended with a Robby Anderson TD.

The dagger came one play later. To start their next drive Derek Carr threw an interception that Brian Poole returned for a TD. With that, the Jets had a 31 point for the second straight week. It was the first time in franchise history that the Jets had a lead of at least 30 points in back-to-back games.

The defense’s role in this game should not be understated. They held the Raiders offense to just three points. The Raiders came into the game averaging 22.5 points per game. They were the seventh-ranked total offense in DVOA and the seventh-ranked passing offense in DVOA.

The Jets defense held that offense to zero TDs. The Jets CBs led by Bless Austin and Arthur Maulet gave up just 140 passing yards to a top 10 passing offense in the NFL. In the run game, the Jets held the Raiders to just 68 total yards and 3.1 yards per carry. Josh Jacobs was held to just 34 yards and 3.4 yards per carry, both are career-lows for the rookie RB.

This was as complete a win as the Jets have had this season. They are now on a three-game winning streak and they head to Cincinnati to play the win-less Bengals next Sunday.

New York Jets’ CB Brian Poole has been Elite in 2019

New York Jets, Brian Poole

Brian Poole has been by far the New York Jets best free-agent acquisition this season.

When Brian Poole signed with the Jets for just $3 million in March no much attention was paid to the move. The attention that the move did get came from angry Jets fans. They didn’t understand how the Jets could sign Poole to play slot CB when players like Bryce Callahan were available. It felt like the team was cheaping out at one of the most important positions in the league.

Poole has quickly proven everybody wrong. He’s become one of the premier slot CBs in the NFL in 2019. Poole has allowed just 378 yards this season, which is 27th in the league. He’s allowing just 10.8 yards per receptions, which is 12th in the league. He’s also allowing just 6.5 yards per target, which is 17th in the league. Poole is fourth in the NFL in yards allowed per coverage snap at just 0.66 yards per snap. His 60.3% catch rate allowed is 32nd in the league.

What’s most impressive about Poole’s turnaround this season tough is his discipline. Poole was among the league leaders in penalties among CBs in 2018 with eight called against him and five accepted. In 2019 Poole has just three penalties called against him and one accepted. That turn around is a huge reason why he’s been one of the elite slot CBs in the league.

These numbers may not stand up to the elite numbers put up by CBs like Stephon Gilmore or Richard Sherman, but they are impressive. They make him one of the best slot CBs in the NFL. Getting a player of that caliber in free agency for just $3 million dollars is as good as it gets.

The issue is that Poole is set to hit free agency at the end of the season. So, the Jets are going to have to re-sign him if they want him back. With the value of slot CBs on the rise, it could be costly. The best comparison for a contract would be Bryce Callahan who signed a three-year $21 million contract with $10 million guaranteed.

With the cap increasing Poole should expect to at least match that contract. Will new Jets’ GM Joe Douglas be willing to shell out seven or eight million on a slot CB? That’s a question that is going to need to be answered in the coming weeks.

If Poole does walk it will mean that the Jets have yet another hole in the roster that they’ll need to fill in 2020.

New York Jets: Containing The Cowboys Key Pieces Is Essential

Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys’ defense is young and talented. To go along with that, so much of the preparation and headlines regarding this game have been centered around Sam Darnold and the New York Jets offense. Reportedly Adam Gase hadn’t been using the regular playbook in order to not over expose it without the franchise guy at the helm. Now Darnold is back and the Jets offense is going to be expected to come out and perform a hell of a lot better than they have to this point.

The Jets can win this game on offense by scoring points but the Jets can easily control the momentum in this game with their defense. Their defense will not only get a lift from Sam being back on offense but they also get Jordan Jenkins and Brandon Copeland back. Jenkins and Copeland are both two of the best edge rushers on this squad and their additions will help immediately. The biggest key to this game is going to be controlling the 4 key pieces of the Cowboy offense.

Amari Cooper:

Despite being injured Amari Cooper has been great for the Cowboys this year. He’s been a true number one wide receiver for this squad. The Jets are going to have to find someone capable of covering him in this ballgame. The best case would be a swapping of Hairston, Johnson and Roberts throughout the game. Allowing them to rotate may be able to contain Cooper. The added benefit of his injury will assist the corners to keep up with him.

Michael Gallup:

The big bodied receiver is a huge part of the Dallas offense. He’s a mismatch and hard to cover. Brian Poole has been the Jets most reliable corner this season and I think this should be his matchup all day. Gallup has been able to torch just about every defense since Thanksgiving last year. He’s got it all figured out now and he’s a dangerous weapon. If the Jets can keep him in control that’s huge.

Ezekiel Elliot:

The Jets run defense has been solid and their front 7, despite injuries has been pretty good. This matchup is evidently a rough one but with two of their starting offensive linemen questionable and a solid defense this matchup could be a lot more in favor of the Jets than expected. The key is gonna have to be if Tyron Smith and La’el Collins play. If they don’t then this could be a big thing for the Jets.

Dak Prescott:

Dak is a glorified game manager. However, he’s also a bonafide leader. He’s by far not one of the most talented QBs in the game. His leadership skills and above average skill set make him a good QB. Pressure rattles Prescott and the Jets will be able to apply that this time around. Jordan Jenkins and Brandon Copeland are excellent edge rushers and will hopefully apply pressure and rattle Dak or else it could be a long day.

If the Jets offense is even remotely good and the defense can contain Dallas than this is a game the Jets could fare better in than expected. If the key pieces are electric than it could be a long day. Gregg Williams better be ready because if he and his defense aren’t prepared it’ll be a terrible loss.P

Brian Poole Has Been Great for the New York Jets

New York Jets

One very positive observation from the disappointing start to the New York Jets’ season has been Brian Poole. Poole was a guy the New York Jets’ fanbase seemed 50/50 on. Poole was regarded as talented but also a question mark. Three games in he have proven his supporters correct.

Brian Poole Has Always Been Solid

Poole came into the league and was immediately a contributor. In his first year, he had 58 tackles, 5 TFLs, 3 QB Hits, 1.0 Sacks, 1 INT, 9 Pass Deflections and 2 FRs. He answered with another successful season in his second season yet, he still didn’t match his first-year success. Poole had 63 tackles, 2 TFLs, 3 QB Hits, 1.0 Sacks and 4 Pass Deflections. In his final year with Atlanta, he had 74 tackles, 4 TFLs, 5 QB hits, and 3 INTs. Poole was always a great asset for the Falcons and was a great player with them. Now he’s produced above expectations.

Poole Has Come Alive This Year

When Poole came to the team it seemed he was being brought over to fill the Buster Skrine nickel corner role. Yet he’s been able to do so much more. He’s been able to step up when the need is and he’s been a shutdown corner. He’s got 3 Pass Deflections, a safety, a TFL, and 16 tackles. He’s been one of the few bright spots on this team and he’s been very valuable. In wake of the issues with Trumaine Johnson, it’s encouraging to see Poole have a lot of success. Hopefully, another corner steps up to ease some of the pressure he’s had to carry by being the only reliable corner.