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The NY Jets have made a total of four free-agent signings through the first two days of the legal-tampering period. And with free agency “officially” set to begin on Wednesday, there are still quite a few notable names on the market.
The first day of the unofficial start of free agency was a busy one as the Jets made a total of three signings adding linebacker Jarrad Davis, wide receiver Corey Davis, and pass-rusher Carl Lawson in a star-studded day.
However, things quieted down a bit on Tuesday as the Jets made just one signing inking special-teams ace Justin Hardee to a three-year deal.
The Jets still have plenty of holes, however, and with a ton of excellent players remaining on the open market, Wednesday seems poised to be a big day for the organization.
There are a few players that the Jets have been linked to in recent days. Guys like K’Waun Williams, Marlon Mack, and Keanu Neal immediately come to mind. But this isn’t going to be a list of players the Jets could sign.
We’re rattling off three players the Jets should sign, no matter how unlikely it may be.
The wide receiver market has been rather slow to develop. The same goes for the cornerback market which only just started picking up steam late last night.
As such, the Jets have their fair share of free-agent targets remaining on the market. Wednesday could be a big day.
Let’s take a look at three free agents the Jets should target on the third day of free agency and the first day of the new league year.
Next: 3. Richard Sherman
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3. The NY Jets should sign CB Richard Sherman
The Jets are likely to tackle the cornerback market as soon as today after a number of the top names were snatched up on Tuesday night. One notable name that remains available is veteran Richard Sherman.
Sherman isn’t going to be a target for every cornerback-needy team this offseason.
He’s a scheme-dependent veteran who turns 33-years-old later this month and has dealt with serious injuries in two of the last four seasons. However, for all those negatives, he remains one of the best cornerbacks in football.
Sherman was Pro Football Focus‘ No. 1 overall cornerback in 2019 as he put together yet another outstanding season making his fifth career Pro Bowl. Two years removed from a torn Achilles, Sherman had arguably the best year of his career at 31-years-old.
Unfortunately, he was limited to just five games in 2020 after suffering a calf injury early in the year. But Sherman was still one of the best players on the field when healthy.
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At this stage, he might be looking to sign on with a contender. Or he could join his good friend Robert Saleh in New York where he could continue to thrive in his former coach’s zone-heavy system.
Sherman would be a perfect mentor for someone like Bryce Hall who shares many of the same strengths as a player. The Jets need cornerback depth badly, and Sherman would give them a legitimate top player at the position in the short-term.
It’s not a long-term move, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t make plenty of sense.
Next: 2. Curtis Samuel
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2. The NY Jets should sign WR Curtis Samuel
The Jets made a sizable splash signing physical wideout Corey Davis on the first day of free agency. But that doesn’t mean the Jets’ work is done at the position.
The wide receiver market remains stout with high-end talent including Kenny Golladay, Will Fuller, and JuJu Smith-Schuster. But no player remains a better fit for the Jets than Curtis Samuel.
Samuel is a New York native who developed into a versatile, dynamic playmaker for the Carolina Panthers over the last four years. And his breakout campaign came in 2020 when he hauled in 77 catches for 851 yards and three touchdowns.
The Ohio State product registered an incredibly-high 80 percent catch rate while also carrying the ball 41 times for 200 yards and a pair of scores on the ground.
Samuel found his most success lining up in the slot, but he has experience lining up all over the offense including out wide and in the backfield. His skill set would be tailor-made for a Kyle Shanahan-inspired system.
That’s what makes him such an intriguing target for the Jets.
Signing Samuel could mean the Jets move on from Jamison Crowder who fills a similar role in the offense. That would save the Jets $10 million and allow them to use that money on Samuel or elsewhere.
Even if Crowder isn’t cut, signing Samuel is a move the Jets must seriously consider making.
Next: 1. Rodney Hudson
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1. The NY Jets should sign C Rodney Hudson
Curtis Samuel topped this list a day ago. But following the release of Rodney Hudson, a new name has emerged as the Jets’ most appealing free-agent target.
Hudson was shockingly released by the Las Vegas Raiders on Tuesday after six seasons with the organization. Now the top name on the offensive line market, the Jets should absolutely show interest in signing one of the best centers in football.
Unfortunately, it’s not something that seems incredibly likely.
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Reports seem to indicate that the Jets are happy with Connor McGovern at center and have no plans to move him to guard, even given his experience playing there. If that’s the case, then Hudson isn’t a realistic target.
But we’re not talking about what the Jets will do. We’re talking about what they should do. And the Jets should make a serious push to sign Hudson.
The 31-year-old has been the model of consistency for the past decade. In his nine years as a full-time starter, Hudson has never been ranked lower than 17th at his position by Pro Football Focus and has ranked in the top-10 in five of the last seven seasons.
He’s a three-time Pro Bowler who probably deserves more recognition than he’s received. And even though he turns 32 in July, he’s still one of the best players at his position in football.
It seems unlikely that the Jets make this move. But in a dream world, the Jets sign Hudson and move McGovern to right guard.