Jets Pushed to Add Pro Bowl Pass Catcher for Aaron Rodgers

Robert Saleh, Jets

Getty New York Jets head coach Robert Saleh reacting in the middle of an NFL game.

The New York Jets might have a few more tricks up their sleeve to add more talent around Aaron Rodgers.

Alex Ballentine of Bleacher Report recently revealed every NFL team’s biggest needs following the 2024 NFL draft. “It would be good to see them pursue another receiver,” Ballentine explained.

One of the names he mentioned as a possible target that could make sense is former Las Vegas Raiders pass-catcher Hunter Renfrow. Renfrow, 28, got cut by the Raiders on March 13.

The former Clemson product originally entered the league as the No. 149 overall pick in the fifth round of the 2019 NFL draft. He spent his first five seasons with the Raiders and during that time recorded 269 receptions for 2,884 receiving yards with 17 touchdowns.

Renfrow’s best season came in 2021 when he was selected for his first and only Pro Bowl appearance. During that campaign, he finished with 103 catches for 1,038 receiving yards with nine touchdowns.

An Ideal Insurance Policy Just in Case

This offseason for the Jets has been all about adding insurance policies. New York selected Olu Fashanu with the No. 11 overall pick just in case Tyron Smith can’t stay healthy. Tyrod Taylor was lured to the Jets in free agency just in case Aaron Rodgers goes down with an injury again.

With that same theme in mind, Renfrow can provide that exact thing in the wide receiving corps.

“Hunter Renfrow would be a good target if the Jets don’t feel [Malachi] Corley is ready for a full-time role in the slot early in the season,” Ballentine wrote for Bleacher Report.

At rookie minicamp, head coach Robert Saleh admitted that Corley, “is raw from a route running standpoint.” He said the offensive coaching staff plans on “obviously attacking that” during the course of the offseason to try and get Corley to improve.

While Corley may need some help in that department that extra TLC isn’t necessary for Renfrow.

Ted Nguyen of The Athletic said Renfrow, “runs his routes like a crafty counterpuncher.” Nguyen wrote a full column about Renfrow back in 2021 explaining how he “invented a couple of new routes.”

Renfrow Is the Perfect Low-Risk Versus High Reward Type of Move

Bill Barnwell of ESPN said, “I wouldn’t expect him [Renfrow] to land much more than a one-year deal for just over the minimum at this point of free agency.”

New York is pressed for cap space after a flurry of big sexy moves this offseason. According to Over The Cap, the Jets have $6.2 million left in cap space which ranks No. 22 in the NFL.

With such little cap space, the Jets have to make every penny count and get the most bang for their buck.

Renfrow is a high-floor route runner who could provide injury insurance to the wide receiver room at the slot position and could provide a body just in case it takes Corley more time than expected to be ready to step on the football field.

If Corley is a quick learner and you don’t have an extra roster spot at wideout you can simply cut bait with Renfrow and move on. No harm, no foul. However, if Corley has any issues you have Renfrow to lean back on.

Barnwell also highlighted his ability to return punts which is an added bonus. Especially with the new kickoff rules it’s unclear exactly what type of returner will thrive in this new environment.

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