NY Jets: Looking back at 5 careers the team has stunted

NY Jets Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
NY Jets Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports /

The NY Jets may have played a part in stunting the careers of these five players.

The NY Jets haven’t done the best job at developing talent. Which players found success after they left the Jets or regressed when with the team?

There are quite a few examples of players improving immensely in their post-Jets career. Be it because of poor development or external factors, it’s seemed to happen more with the Jets than other teams over the years.

But which players are the best example of this? Which players might have found more success if not for their stints with the Jets? And which players have gone on to succeed after leading the Jets?

We take a look at five careers the Jets might have stunted.

The NY Jets stunted Leonard Williams’ career

The Jets used the sixth overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft to select Leonard Williams. The former USC Trojans defensive lineman didn’t live up to expectations with the Jets and was traded to the New York Giants in 2019.

Because of Williams’s lack of production, the Jets getting a 2020 third-round pick and a 2021 fifth-round pick for the former first-round pick was initially considered a win for the Jets.

We should re-consider who ended up winning that trade.

Williams has been a big reason why the Giants are currently fighting for a playoff spot. The 26-year-old has 8.5 sacks in 13 games for the Giants this season. To put that in perspective, Williams had just 7.5 sacks in his previous three seasons with the Jets.

Williams’s career has only improved since getting traded from the Jets.

The NY Jets stunted Demario Davis’ career

Demario Davis was selected by the Jets in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft. Davis never made a Pro Bowl or did anything of major significance with the Jets. In the 2018 offseason, Davis signed with the New Orleans Saints.

Davis has emerged as one of the best linebackers in the entire league since joining the Saints. He was voted as a first-team All-Pro in 2019.

Davis is also a big reason why the Saints currently have one of the best defenses in the entire league. Why couldn’t he make this type of an impact with the Jets?

The NY Jets stunted Le’Veon Bell’s career

Before signing with the Jets, Le’Veon Bell was widely regarded as arguably the best running back in the league as a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The former Michigan State Spartans back was voted a first-team All-Pro in 2014 and 2017 and was named a second-team All-Pro in 2016. After a very impressive stint with the Steelers, Bell signed with the Jets in the 2019 offseason.

In 15 games with the Jets in 2019, Bell averaged a dreadful 3.2 yards per carry. After appearing in just two games for the Jets this season, Bell was cut by the team.

Why was Bell one of the best running backs in the league for the Steelers but struggled as a member of the Jets?

The NY Jets stunted Juston Burris’ career

Juston Burris was drafted by the Jets in the fourth round of the 2016 NFL Draft. Burris only started in two games for the team and never made a huge impact for the Jets.

Over the past two seasons alone, Burris has started in nine games for the Cleveland Browns and in another nine games for the Carolina Panthers.

The Browns and Panthers got more out of Burris than the Jets ever did.

The NY Jets stunted Chad Hansen’s career

Chad Hansen was drafted by the Jets in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Hansen only spent one year with the team and failed to make an impact.

Hansen is currently a member of the Houston Texans and has appeared in two games since he departed from the Jets. Both of those games have taken place this month.

In his first game, Hansen recorded over 100 yards receiving. In his second game, Hansen caught all seven passes that were thrown his way and ended up with 56 receiving yards.

It’s only been two games, but early indications show that Hansen has been far better with the Texans than he was with the Jets.

These are five careers that the Jets have stunted. As you can see, it’s not enough to draft and sign players, you have to develop them as well. Are there any players currently on the Jets who aren’t succeeding because of the situation around them?

Sam Darnold is the team’s starting quarterback and has not lived up to expectations in his three seasons with the team. However, heading into the 2018 NFL Draft, Darnold was widely viewed as a future star.

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Darnold will almost certainly not be starting for the Jets next season and might end up being traded in this upcoming offseason.

Will Darnold join another team and be the latest player to find success after leaving the Jets?