Cornerback is among the biggest holes for the New York Jets. Out of a thin free agency market, who can they sign to help strengthen their unit?
The Jets did a solid job fixing up the roster over the offseason. They filled holes on the offensive line, running back, slot receiver and linebacker positions. Despite their strong offseason, they still have a glaring hole to fill: the cornerback position.
The Jets opted to let two of their starters walk in free agency, not attempting to re-sign Morris Claiborne or Buster Skrine. They filled the slot corner vacancy with Brian Poole, who signed a one year deal with the team. For Claiborne, Darryl Roberts will be taking his spot as the second outside corner.
Even if the starters pan out and play well for the Jets, they still look extremely thin in terms of depth. An injury would likely lead to either Derrick Jones or Parry Nickerson moving into a starting role. Jones has never seen real playing time in the regular season, and Nickerson struggled in the absence of Skrine.
That being said, there are still a few options that make sense for the Jets at cornerback. Who can they target? Here are three realistic options for the Jets to sign to strengthen the depth of the cornerback position.
Claiborne played well in his two years with the Jets, but never found a team to play for this offseason. He remains a free agent, and with time running out before the season starts, I’m sure neither side would mind reuniting with one another.
In his two year tenure with the Jets, Claiborne started in 30 out of 32 games, and held his own. He defended 22 passes and intercepted 3. Most Jets fans would say Claiborne was a solid starter during his time with the Jets, and wouldn’t mind seeing a reunion.
David Amerson’s made his way around the league since being drafted by the Redskins in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft. He’s played for the Redskins, Raiders and Cardinals throughout his six year career. The Cardinals decided to release him in June, and he has yet to be signed.
Amerson’s started in 61 of his 74 career games, putting up solid numbers throughout his career. In his last full season, he defended 16 passes and intercepted 2 in 15 starts, while also racking up a career high 64 tackles. The Cardinals signed him this past November, and he started in 5 out of the 6 games he was with the team for.
Amerson could come into the Jets’ training camp and immediately compete for a starting job. If he doesn’t start, he’d still make a great backup behind Roberts and Trumaine Johnson. The Jets should look into Amerson as a potential late free agent pickup.
Orlando Scandrick isn’t the player he once was, but he would still be a solid option for the Jets this late in the offseason. The 10 year veteran has intercepted 9 passes and defended 76 thus far in his career, mostly with the Cowboys.
He spent the 2018 season with the Chiefs, where he only started in 7 games. He still managed to grab an interception and defend 13 passes, which is a new career high. He was an every-game starter for the Cowboys before joining the Chiefs last season.
If you’re expecting to find a Pro Bowl corner this late in the offseason, you’re going to be disappointed. Scandrick makes a solid free agent option for the Jets this late in the offseason. He would be a solid veteran presence who can compete for a starting job or be a solid player off of the bench.