After some offensive bursts, general manager Joe Douglas is finally adding some juice on the defensive side of the ball.
The New York Jets agreed to a deal with former Houston Texans pass rusher Jacob Martin. It’ll be a three-year deal for $13.5 million with $6 million of that guaranteed according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network.
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Finally Some Juice on the EDGE
Martin is a 26-year-old EDGE rusher who will be entering his fifth professional season in 2022. He originally entered the NFL as the No. 186 overall pick in the sixth round of the 2018 NFL draft by the Seattle Seahawks.
After showing some pop in his rookie campaign wracking up three sacks and eight quarterback hits, Martin was traded the following year.
Seattle sent Martin, Barkevious Mingo, and a 2020 third-round draft choice to the Texans in exchange for EDGE rusher Jadeveon Clowney in August of 2019.
With Houston, Martin continued to fill the role as a situational pass rusher for the next three seasons:
- 10.5 sacks
- 16 quarterback hits
- 54 combined tackles
Although he is coming off of a career year in nearly every major defensive statistical category: games played (17) and started (14), played 61 percent of the snaps, four sacks, and 38 pressures.
What Could This Possibly Mean?
Martin apparently wasn’t the only EDGE rusher on the Jets’ radar during free agency.
While Chandler Jones ultimately decided to sign with the Las Vegas Raiders on a three-year deal for $51 million, he did flirt with the green and white.
Josina Anderson said it was her “understanding” that the other teams in consideration were the San Francisco 49ers, Buffalo Bills, Indianapolis Colts, and interestingly enough the Jets.
That does confirm a report from the Pro Football Network who said Gang Green “jumped into the mix” for Jones, but one can only assume the money got too crazy.
However, the fact that they were dipping their toes in those expensive and big-name waters suggests perhaps they’re considering a massive move.
One deal that appears somewhat imminent in the NFL is a trade for Minnesota Vikings star pass rusher Danielle Hunter.
According to Ben Goessling who covers the purple people eaters for the Star Tribune says they’ve been “trying to trade” Hunter who is due a fat roster bonus on Sunday, March 20.
Douglas has made plenty of trades since becoming the Jets GM, but he has never pulled the trigger on acquiring a star talent.
The team has a clear and obvious need at pass rusher and on paper, Hunter could fit the bill as the guy to line up opposite of Carl Lawson.
He checks off almost every box that you would look for:
- Still young (27)
- Massive size: 6-foot-5, 263 pounds
- 60.5 career sacks
However, there are two major holdups and why he hasn’t been traded yet.
Two more years are left on his deal for over $34 million through the 2023 season, per Spotrac.
Also, Hunter hasn’t been able to stay healthy. He has missed 26 games over the last two years due to a herniated disc and had neck surgery missing the entire 2020 campaign. Then in 2021 he tore his pec and was forced to miss the final 10 games of the year.
While that is a major red flag, the good news is prior to these two years he was healthy as an ox playing in 78 out of 80 possible games over a five-year stretch.
If anyone is going to trade for him, they’ll have to get a clean bill of health from the team. If the Jets are able to do that, this could be a trade worth exploring.