NY Jets: 3 players that must step up following the Carl Lawson injury

NY Jets, Bryce Huff, Sheldon Rankins
NY Jets, Bryce Huff, Sheldon Rankins / Dustin Satloff/Getty Images
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NY Jets, Bryce Huff
NY Jets, Bryce Huff / Rich Schultz/Getty Images

1. Bryce Huff, DE, NY Jets

Perhaps no one benefits from Lawson's injury more than Bryce Huff. If there is a silver lining to the injury (there isn't), it's that Huff should receive every opportunity to take a significant step forward in 2021.

An undrafted rookie a year ago, Huff was the lone undrafted free agent to make the Jets' initial roster in 2020. He went on to appear in 14 games, playing 26 percent of defensive snaps and finishing with two sacks, four QB hits, 16 tackles, and four tackles for loss.

It was an encouraging rookie season for the former Memphis standout and many believed that Huff would continue to be a rotational piece in 2021.

But after Lawson's injury, his role might be greater than anyone could have expected.

Huff is likely the favorite to receive a significant uptick in snaps with Lawson sidelined. Sure, you could point to players like John Franklin-Myers and Ronald Blair as others who should see an increase in playing time.

But none will benefit quite as much as Huff who has shined this summer.

Huff looked like a man on a mission in the Jets' first preseason game tallying a pair of sacks in the victory. The coaching staff has been raving about him all summer and he appears to be one of the most improved players on the team.

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Is he going to replace Carl Lawson? Of course not. But at the very least, he could soften the blow of his teammate's extended absence.