NY Jets might miss out on Kwon Alexander in free agency

NY Jets, Kwon Alexander
NY Jets, Kwon Alexander / Michael Owens/GettyImages

The NY Jets have been active in the late free agency market, signing the likes of Billy Turner and Al Woods after the 2023 NFL Draft. One player they remain interested in bringing back as well is linebacker Kwon Alexander.

ESPN's Rich Cimini reported prior to the draft that the Jets still had interest in re-signing Alexander. Unfortunately, despite that reported interest, the team might miss out.

Alexander is reportedly set to visit the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday night, per ESPN's Adam Schefter. The former Pro Bowl linebacker seemed to hint that something could be imminent with a cryptic tweet after the report.

The Steelers have a need at off-ball linebacker, meaning that Alexander could earn a starting role in Pittsburgh. Despite the Jets' supposed interest, his meeting with the Steelers could very well result in a contract in the very near future.

What do the NY Jets do if they miss out on Kwon Alexander?

The Jets signed Alexander to a cheap one-year contract last August, and the former fourth-round pick went on to appear in all 17 games for the first time in his career. In fact, it was just the second time in eight seasons that the oft-injured Alexander appeared in more than 12 games.

Alexander was healthy and effective, playing 49 percent of the Jets' defensive snaps as the team's third starting linebacker in the base defense.

The Jets did add Western Michigan's Zaire Barnes in the 2023 NFL Draft, although the rookie linebacker projects more as a special teamer. The likes of Jamien Sherwood, Hamsah Nasirildeen, and Chazz Surratt could compete for the starting job if Alexander walks.

Sherwood is the most likely candidate to step into a larger role. The former fifth-round pick is a core special-teamer who has been used sparingly on defense over the last two seasons, but he has impressed in limited playing time.

The Jets might be willing to roll with the young linebackers on their roster. If not, notable veterans like Myles Jack, Zach Cunningham, and Deion Jones remain free agents.

The Jets have options if they miss out on Alexander, and it doesn't seem as though he's a priority for the team. Still, it would be nice to bring back a player who was arguably their second-best linebacker last season.

Next. LSU DB Jarrick Bernard-Converse talks NY Jets visit, 2023 NFL Draft in interview. dark

Perhaps the Jets still end up re-signing Alexander, but his meeting with the Steelers on Monday night isn't a promising development for those hoping he returns in 2023.