Dec 11, 2011; Landover, MD, USA; New England Patriots defensive end Andre Carter (93) during the second half against the Washington Redskins at FedEX Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE
The Jets biggest need this offseason is an impact pass rusher. There is no doubt about this, as the Jets top sack man wasn’t even a full time player (Aaron Maybin). He certainly made an impact off the edge, but there are no signs to this point that he is going to evolve into a full time player.
In scouring the waiver wire for a name for the Jets to sign, that would come cheap, and make just such an impact, I have found one. His name, Andre Carter, DE most recently of the Patriots.
First of all, he is coming off a season ending quad injury, so he will not come with a large price tag, despite the fact he was elected to the Pro Bowl in 2011. His contract with the Patriots at a maximum would have earned $2.75 million including incentives, and that is before his injury. At 32 years old, and coming off an injury that required surgery, Carter can not expect to bring in the big money.
Despite his age, Andre Carter is still an impact pass rusher. Despite the season ending injury, Carter started 14 games, finishing with 10 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. He would have, just with these numbers, been the top sack artist on the New York Jets. Clearly, Andre Carter is showing no signs of slowing down at age 32.
Carter has spent his career in the backfield, with 76 sacks over his career, and never less than 4 sacks in a season in which he started at least 14 games. His best season was a 12.5 sack campaign for the 49ers in 2002, and more recently 11 sacks for the Redskins in 2009 before his 10 sack season last year.
He also has experience in the 3-4 system, which is the system the Jets run.
Finally, as petty as it sounds, he played for the New England Patriots. Whether we agree with or not, each team signs guys that played for the other team, to obtain some “trade secrets”. How successful or not this practice is, we will never actually know, but the two teams have been doing it to each other for a long time. If the Jets are going to do it, why not do it with a guy that registered 4 sacks against them last year? That is as good a guy as any.
Andre Carter would be an asset rushing the passer off the edge, and he won’t cost much. If he is healthy, the Jets should go ahead and make an offer.