NFL Analyst Begs Jets to Retain Youngster: ‘Don’t Let [Him] Go’

Bryce Huff, Jets

Getty New York Jets pass rusher Bryce Huff making a play during an NFL game.

The New York Jets have plenty of important decisions to make this offseason.

One of the more under-the-radar choices will be restricted free-agent defensive lineman Bryce Huff. Gang Green will have to make a decision on what level of RFA tender they assign to him.

“Keep as much of that defensive front intact and maybe restructure some of the deals so you can keep as many of these people who are contributors. Like don’t let Bryce Huff go,” Cynthia Frelund exclaimed on the official Jets Podcast at the NFL Combine. “I understand that’s not a sexy name to be like oh defensive ends get paid a lot of money but don’t let him go. Let’s figure him out.”

Breaking Down Jets Bryce Huff Financial Decision

According to the NFL bylaws, players that have earned three accrued seasons are considered “restricted free agents.”

Bryce Huff just completed his third professional season in 2022, all with the Jets.

Gang Green has four tender options in the RFA world to apply to Huff this offseason. A first-round tender, a second-round tender, an original round tender, or the right of first refusal.

Since Huff was originally an undrafted free agent, the “original round tender” option is eliminated as a choice.

Depending on which tender the Jets put on Huff will correlate to what happens next.

For example, if the Jets place a first-round tender on Huff and he signs an offer sheet with another team and the Jets don’t match it, they would receive a first-round pick in return.

It would work exactly in the same way for the second-round tender as well, if Huff signs an offer sheet with another team and New York doesn’t match it, they would receive a second-round draft choice in return.

However, if the Jets placed the “right of first refusal” tag on him if the Jets decided not to match an offer sheet they would receive no draft compensation as a result.

According to Over The Cap projections here are the expected RFA tender amounts:

  • First-round tender: one-year deal for $6.05 million
  • Second-round tender: one-year deal for $4.3 million
  • Right of first refusal tender: one-year deal for $2.6 million

Jets DL Bryce Huff Has a Ton of Untapped Potential

The 24-year-old who will turn 25 before the start of the 2023 season is immensely talented.

In three seasons the former Memphis product has racked up 7.5 sacks, 22 quarterback hits, and a forced fumble.

During that stretch of time, Huff has appeared in 37 games but has only started in seven of those contests.

The Jets employ a defensive line rotation but even keeping that in mind Huff only played 20 percent of the defensive snaps in 2022, per Pro Football Reference.

Despite that Huff put up some insane analytical production according to the folks over at Pro Football Focus:

  • 90.4 overall grade
  • 88 pass-rush grade
  • 64.9 run defense grade

If he could accomplish that feat in limited reps, just imagine what could happen if the talented defender got more opportunities in 2023.

Another option the Jets could consider is forgetting about the restricted free agency process and just handing Huff a brand-new long-term contract.

It would be a smart investment from an organization that has seen what he can do in spurts and projecting what that could look like in the future with a larger role.

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