Jets Could Trade for Several Underachieving First-Round Pass Rushers

Rashan Gary Packers

Getty Green Bay Packers pass rusher Rashan Gary working out ahead of a big contest.

Pain. That has been the most prominent feeling for New York Jets fans as it pertains to their current crop of pass rushers.

The last 15 years have been a barren wasteland filled with an overflowing dark abyss of disappointment. Opposing offenses have had nothing to worry about because the Jets didn’t have the necessary horses to compete.

We all thought that finally changed this offseason when the green and white handed a duffle bag filled with $45 million to then free agent Carl Lawson. Then he ruptured his Achilles and was done for the year.

To add insult to injury, one of the Jets’ backup plans, Vinny Curry, was surprisingly ruled out for the season after a rare blood disorder was discovered this offseason.

This series of unfortunate events have left the Jets in a tough place ahead of the 2021 season.

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A Strange Fascination by the Jets Coaching Staff

ESPN Jets reporter Rich Cimini brought up a few interesting players in his Sunday morning column that the green and white could be interested in trading for.

There were a lot of players named, but a certain group stood out from the rest.

Underachieving high picks

Clelin Ferrell of the Las Vegas Raiders

  • Two years left on his contract for $8.1 million
  • 6.5 sacks in two seasons
  • Only 24 years old

Over the last few weeks this name has come up in trade conversations and that surprised me. Obviously, as a former No. 4 overall pick Ferrell hasn’t lived up to the hype.

When Roger Goodell called out his name on the podium, draft shows went crazy because he was expected to go in the middle or late first round.

He’s a 4-3 defensive end and a complete player that can do everything. Ferrell has a squirrelly-ness to his game and can be annoyingly good at getting after the passer.

Rashan Gary of the Green Bay Packers

  • Two years left on his contract for $4.6 million
  • 7 sacks in two seasons
  • Only 23 years old

This one is perhaps the most intriguing of the group. Gary is an athletic freak from Michigan and there is so much untapped potential underneath the surface.

The Jets got an extensive look at Gary during the joint practice last week and that would be a fascinating addition to the roster. Imagine adding a 23-year-old premium talent to the roster for the present and the future.

Shaq Lawson of the Houston Texans

  • Two years left on his contract for $9.8 million
  • 20.5 sacks in five seasons
  • Only 27 years old

Lawson is the oldest of the bunch and has bounced around the league. Although how could you not be intrigued with a Lawson and Lawson combo in 2022 with Carl and Shaq on opposite sides of the defense?

The fact that he fell out of favor with the Houston Texans and couldn’t stay on the field is somewhat concerning. The Texans are going to be terrible this year, but let’s just hope the reason for his benching is beyond the football field.

Jaylon Ferguson of the Baltimore Ravens

  • Two years left on his contract for $2.8 million
  • 4.5 sacks in two seasons
  • Only 25 years old

This is the one player who doesn’t originate from a first-round pedigree. Ferguson was a third-rounder back in 2019.

There’s an obvious connection from Joe Douglas’ old stomping grounds and that could be the foundation of a deal. Ferguson has great traits at 6-foot-5, 275 pounds, and could be a super under-the-radar add for Gang Green.

A Chance for Redemption

Saleh has a soft spot in his heart for the island of misfit toys. Just take a look at the very first player this new regime signed when free agency opened back in March, linebacker Jarrad Davis.

A former first-round bust of the Detroit Lions who had fallen out of favor. The Jets didn’t see any of that though, they saw a player who wasn’t used properly and wanted to give him a chance at redemption.

While we won’t see that for a large chunk of the season due to injury, we did see the ideology. This coaching staff is all about giving players second chances and with any one of these trades they would have an opportunity to do so.

Since each of the players listed has completely underwhelmed it would be a lot easier to acquire any one of them for a low cost. Everyone is hoping for an all-star add, but perhaps these would better fit.

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