Jets Projected to Pursue 6-Time Pro Bowler After Jadeveon Clowney Snub

Calais Campbell

Calais Campbell could be a great fit for the New York Jets.

The New York Jets may have lost out on Jadeveon Clowney, but the team could make a run for another established veteran like Calais Campbell, a six-time Pro Bowler.

Despite the Jets having successful meetings with Clowney, the former No. 1 overall pick decided to sign a two-year deal with the Carolina Panthers.

The move leaves the Jets without another established pass rusher. Justin Fried with The Jet Press gave out some other alternative free agents for the Jets to pursue, highlighted by Campbell.

“The Jets showed interest in signing Campbell last offseason before he agreed to a deal with the Falcons,” Fried wrote. “If Campbell is willing to play another season (which, by all accounts, he is), the Jets should make another run at signing him.”

Given their interest in Campbell last season, it would make a lot of sense for the Jets to try signing him again on a one-year deal.

Calais Campbell Is an NFL Legend

While he’s bounced around the league with a few different teams, Campbell has consistently been one of the most dominant defensive players over the last decade.

Campbell was a second-round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals. He spent his first nine seasons in Arizona, making two Pro Bowl appearance and two second-team All-Pro selections with the team.

His prime came with the Jacksonville Jaguars after signing a four-year, $60 million contract prior to the 2017 season. Campbell played a key part in the team’s AFC Championship run in the 2017 season, earning a first-team All-Pro selection with a career-high 14.5 sacks.

Campbell has also played with the Atlanta Falcons and Baltimore Ravens since leaving Jacksonville. At 37 years old, he has accumulated three All-Pro team appearances, six Pro Bowl selections, the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award, and recognition on the NFL 2010s All-Decade Team.

After such an iconic career, Campbell will have a strong case to make it into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. However, if he still wants to keep playing, the Jets make a lot of sense for him.

The Jets Have Multiple Young Pass Rushers

If the Jets aren’t able to land a veteran pass rusher, the team will need some significant contributions from some of their younger players.

The Jets have a first-round pick on a pass rusher twice in the last two seasons. Jermaine Johnson was taken 26th overall back in 2022. He broke onto the scene after a quiet rookie season, racking up 7.5 sacks this past season along with a 37-yard interception returned for a touchdown.

Will McDonald IV is hoping for a similar second-year jump in 2024. He was the 15th overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, but only was able to rack up three sacks and one forced fumble in 15 games.

The oldest defensive end currently on the Jets roster is John Franklin-Myers, who is just 27 years old. He was originally a fourth-round pick by the Los Angeles Rams back in 2018, but lasted just one season before being waived and scooped up by the Jets.

Franklin-Myers has turned into a solid player. However, if the Jets don’t feel that he’s ready to lead the defensive ends as a veteran leader, an older player like Campbell could make a lot of sense in free agency.

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