3 moves still left for NY Jets to make after the 2023 NFL Draft
By Justin Fried
3. The NY Jets should sign a veteran safety
The Jets' defense was one of the best units in football last season, aided by a star-studded cornerback room and a clean bill of health. The team's safeties, however, were an issue.
Lamarcus Joyner was the weakest link in the Jets' defense, and his position-mate, Jordan Whitehead, was a disappointment in his first season with the team. It was clear that help was needed this offseason.
The Jets did go out and trade for former Baltimore Ravens defensive leader Chuck Clark in a steal of a trade. Clark is penciled in as one of the team's starting safeties alongside Whitehead.
However, Clark and Whitehead occupy similar roles as traditional box safeties. The Jets don't have a prototypical free safety on their roster they can trust to play any sort of significant snaps this season.
There are a couple of intriguing options still on the free-agent market, though. Six-year NFL veteran John Johnson III and former Green Bay Packers safety Adrian Amos would both be potential upgrades for the Jets.
Johnson has started 80 games over the last six seasons, earning 80.0+ Pro Football Focus grades in three of those years. At just 27 years old, Johnson could be a relatively affordable free safety addition for the Jets.
As for Amos, he's coming off arguably the worst season of his career in 2022, but it wasn't long ago that he was one of the better safeties in football. He finished as PFF's second-ranked safety in 2017 and 2020.
There are quality safety options remaining on the open market, and the Jets would be wise to sign one of them before the start of the season.