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FREE AGENT dept. : some Targets ~ ~ ~

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Where Le'Veon Bell fits : We put together potential contract offers          http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/26046817

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NFL free agents 2019 : What is Jets’ salary cap situation with free agency less than 2 weeks away ?   Who else can they release to create more space  ?

>  http://s.nj.com/0iopBaR 

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NFL free agency 2019 : Mike Maccagnan says Jets will ‘very strongly’ target OL upgrades  |  Here are 5 players he should consider         http://s.nj.com/8MLqG2k 

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NFL rumors: Latest updates on Jets’ free agents, including Jermaine Kearse, Buster Skrine, Brandon Copeland | Who stays? Who goes?

Updated 12:07 PM; Today 11:40 AM
Jets’ Adam Gase isn’t worried about Bountygate
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By Darryl Slater | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

INDIANAPOLIS — The NFL Scouting Combine serves as a launching point of sorts for free agency, in addition to giving teams a chance to assess NFL Draft prospects.

Until March 11 (two days before the start of free agency), pending unrestricted free agents can negotiate only with their current team. That means the Jets currently have exclusive negotiating rights with their pending, in-house free agents, as they prepare to also make a push for running back Le’Veon Bell — the biggest name available in free agency this year.

The Jets have already locked up their top in-house free agent, wide receiver Quincy Enunwa. But there are some other notable in-house free agents worth monitoring.


 


Here are updates on a few of them, based on information coming out of NFL circles — and from people with knowledge of these matters — at the combine:

OLB Brandon Copeland: The Jets are sticking with a 3-4 defense under new coordinator Gregg Williams, which bodes well for Copeland’s chances of staying. He is a pass rushing specialist who fits best as a 3-4 outside linebacker or 4-3 end. He is expected to have interest from other teams in free agency, but as teams gauge his market value, the Jets have expressed interest in retaining him. Yes, the Jets eventually need to find an elite edge rusher to help boost their sack production. But there certainly could be a role for Copeland on this team going forward. He turns 28 this summer and had five sacks last season while starting 10 games opposite Jordan Jenkins. Copeland previously had just one NFL start. He played last season on a one-year contract worth $1.2 million. But he certainly earned the right in 2018 to ask for more money than that this offseason in free agency.

WR Jermaine Kearse: The Jets need a No. 1 receiver. Kearse isn’t that. You could argue that Enunwa and Robby Anderson also are just complementary receivers. The Jets have yet to speak with Kearse’s camp about potentially re-signing him, though that could change as the start of free agency approaches. Bottom line: The Jets have to put more weapons around second-year quarterback Sam Darnold, and just signing Bell might not be enough. Kearse was frustrated with his role last season under offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates. Kearse and Enunwa made no secret after the season about disagreements with Bates’ approach. But now, the Jets are starting over with Adam Gase’s offense. Could Kearse, 29, have some kind of role for Gase? Maybe not, it appears. Kearse finished last season with just 37 catches for 371 yards and one touchdown — a rough contract year. But he is a respected veteran in the locker room, and he effectively mentored Darnold in 2018. They sat next to each other in the locker room and spoke frequently, as Kearse used former teammate Russell Wilson as an example for how Darnold could grow into a leadership role.

 

CB Buster Skrine: An interesting decision coming here, with the slot cornerback who just wrapped up a four-year contract that paid him $25 million. He was effective at times, but also struggled with racking up too many penalties. Will the Jets re-sign him this offseason? Don’t rule it out. Skrine wants to return, and the Jets have had some preliminary talks with his camp. Skrine is expected to have some sort of market in free agency, though he’s not going to get another contract like that four-year, $25 million deal the Jets gave him in 2015. Slot corner is a critical position in today’s NFL, and here’s the issue for the Jets: Second-year pro Parry Nickerson (Skrine’s understudy in 2018) isn’t a sure-thing candidate to take over that spot. Skrine has his flaws — and he is about to turn 30 — but he has much more experience than Nickerson, a sixth-round draft pick who hadn’t played in the slot before last year.

 

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Rich Cimini   ESPN Staff Writer 

Heard around the scouting combine: With free agency approaching, the Jets are showing interest in the pass-rusher market— specifically, Dante Fowler (Rams), Ezekiel Ansah (Lions) and Preston Smith (Redskins). It could be a deep position in free agency, except the top players are expected to re-sign or get tagged — Demarcus Lawrence (Cowboys), Jadeveon Clowney (Texans), Frank Clark (Seahawks) and Dee Ford (Chiefs). The Jets must come out of this offseason with a pass-rushing threat on the edge.

>   http://www.espn.com/nfl/team/_/name/nyj/new-york-jets

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Free-agent frenzy ?

How active all 32 NFL teams will be in the market           http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/26076476

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