Free Agency

4 pending NY Jets free agents who have earned a new contract

NY Jets, Folorunso Fatukasi
NY Jets, Folorunso Fatukasi / Al Pereira/GettyImages
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NY Jets, Folorunso Fatukasi
NY Jets, Folorunso Fatukasi / John Jones-USA TODAY Sports

2. Folorunso Fatukasi, DT, NY Jets

This is probably the most high-profile extension the Jets could make in the near future. Folorunso Fatukasi has developed into one of the NFL's elite run-stuffing defensive tackles.

A former sixth-round pick, Fatukasi burst onto the scene in his second NFL season establishing himself as one of the team's core rotational defensive linemen. And since then, he's only seen his playing time increase.

Now a full-fledged starter, Fatukasi remains arguably the team's best run defender, even if his play has slipped a little this season.

After receiving Pro Football Focus grades north of 80.0 in each of the last two seasons, Fatukasi has earned a career-worst 68.5 grade in 2021. Most notably, his run defense grade has fallen to 63.2 which ranks 33rd out of 132 qualified interior defensive linemen.

He's still a good player, just not as good as he has been in the past.

Part of the reason for this might have something to do with the Jets' scheme change. Fatukasi is now being asked to play out of position in an attacking 4-3 front as opposed to the block-eating, 3-4 nose tackle he was prior to Robert Saleh's arrival.

Perhaps that scheme change could leave the Jets seeing Fatukasi has expendable, especially with so much money already invested into their defensive line.

But at the same time, Fatukasi has no doubt earned a new contract. However, it remains to be seen if he'll be given it by the Jets or another team.

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