3. Nathan Shepherd, DT, NY Jets
Believe it or not, Nathan Shepherd is the second-longest-tenured player on the Jets' roster behind long-snapper Thomas Hennessy. One of the only survivors of the Mike Maccagnan regime, Shepherd has spent the last five years with the Jets' organization.
He's survived three different coaching regimes and, at 29 years old, is amazingly one of the oldest players on the roster. His streak of durability is also impressive as he's appeared in all 34 games over the last two seasons.
Shepherd has been one of the Jets' top backup defensive tackles during his time with the team, but it's probably time the Jets look to upgrade their interior defensive tackle depth.
The Jets rotate their defensive line heavily meaning that Shepherd plays roughly 40 percent of snaps per game. It shouldn't come as much of a surprise that the Jets' second-string defensive line struggled mightily with Quinnen Williams off the field.
Shepherd is a fine player and a well-respected member of the locker room, but with the former Division II standout set to hit free agency, the Jets should take the opportunity to upgrade a weak position group.
Solomon Thomas is also a free agent, but it seems more likely that the Jets opt to bring him back. He offers more than Shepherd does as a run defender.
Perhaps the Jets bring Shepherd back and have him compete for a job in the summer, but it seems more likely that his time with the organization has come to an end.