The New York Jets threw around a lot of money in free agency to fill a variety of needs.
Despite the fact that we haven’t seen those players in action on the gridiron yet, everyone seemingly has a hot take opinion on those decisions.
ALL the latest Jets news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Jets newsletter here!
A Big Mistake
Alex Ballentine of Bleacher Report recently explained which free agents in the NFL signed with the wrong teams this offseason.
“No one can blame C.J. Uzomah for following the money to the New York Jets. However, it’s hard to see this move working out for him in a football sense.
Uzomah is going to go from an offense where he was working with Joe Burrow and flanked by a receiving core of Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd to New York where he’ll have Zach Wilson, Corey Davis, and Elijah Moore.
Wilson wasn’t all that interested in targeting his tight ends last season. Ryan Griffin had just 42 targets while Tyler Kroft had 29. They were eighth and ninth on the team, respectively.
Uzomah was fourth in targets on a team that just went to the Super Bowl. Now, he might not even see as many targets for an offense with no established identity and an unproven second-year quarterback.”
The 29-year-old veteran had spent the first seven years of his career with the Bengals prior to joining the Jets:
- 163 catches
- 1,591 yards
- 13 touchdowns
Proof Will Be in Pudding
Uzomah is coming off a career season in 2021 and the comparison of talent between Cincinnati and the Jets is completely valid.
There is a significant drop-off, however, that should benefit Uzomah, not hurt him.
With less talented players around him, that should equate to more opportunities.
The one point of criticism from Bleacher Report that doesn’t hold water is the Jets designated targets for the tight end position.
Yes it’s true there were only 71 targets for Ryan Griffin and Tyler Kroft combined last season, but that is because the positional group wasn’t that good. So of course a young Zach Wilson didn’t target that group, instead, he looked to other areas of the field.
With two new weapons at tight end in Uzomah and Tyler Conklin, those numbers are going to shift dramatically.
To be candid, both the Jets and Uzomah are taking a calculated risk on each other.
The former Bengals tight end has never had a season where he recorded over 49 catches, 493 receiving yards, or five touchdowns.
Gang Green is taking a leap of faith that in this offense where he will be higher on the priority pole, those numbers will skyrocket.
While on the other side of the coin Uzomah picking the Jets is a risk. There is a talent drop-off from Cincinnati to New York. He is also going from a proven quarterback in Joe Burrow to one that is unproven in Wilson.
Whether or not this was a mistake for either side is still very much to be determined.