5 edge rushers NY Jets can sign after missing on Jadeveon Clowney

Who should the Jets sign after missing on Clowney?

Yannick Ngakoue
Yannick Ngakoue / Cooper Neill/GettyImages
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The NY Jets made a serious push to sign three-time Pro Bowl edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney, with some signs pointing to a deal eventually being reached. In the end, Clowney agreed to a two-year, $20 million contract with the Carolina Panthers on Wednesday.

Clowney would have been an outstanding addition to a Jets team still reeling following the loss of Bryce Huff in free agency. While the Jets hope to see 2023 first-round pick Will McDonald take on a larger role in 2024, they're still expected to add another piece to their pass-rush corps.

Unfortunately, the options remaining on the free-agent market aren't particularly enticing. There is no Clowney equivalent in free agency. Nonetheless, expect the Jets to explore their remaining options.

Let's take a look at five veteran edge rushers the Jets can still sign after missing out on Clowney.

5. The NY Jets could sign Yannick Ngakoue

The well-traveled Yannick Ngakoue will be entering his ninth NFL season in 2024 and will, in all likelihood, be playing for his seventh different franchise. Perhaps that team could be the Jets.

Ngakoue recorded 19.5 sacks combined between 2021 and 2022 with the Las Vegas Raiders and Indianapolis Colts, proving that he can still be an effective pass rusher. His 2023 season with the Chicago Bears, however, was less inspiring.

Ngakoue finished with just four sacks and 34 pressures on over 400 pass-rush snaps. He also missed more than 29 percent of his tackle attempts. Ngakoue has never been a particularly strong run defender, and his pass-rush efficiency dropped significantly last season.

Still, in a weak crop of free-agent edge rushers, Ngakoue is one of the more appealing options on the open market. He also crossed paths with Robert Saleh and defensive line coach Aaron Whitecotton in Jacksonville, giving him some ties to the Jets' coaching staff.