Gregg Williams
Gregg Williams

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The first time Gregg Williams stood in front of the Jets' defense after a practice, some of his players were shell-shocked. He was loud. He was harsh. He was brutally honest.

He didn't care if any of his players were embarrassed or hurt. In fact, that was the point.

And nobody was spared.

 

"I think it's great, the fact that sensitivity is out the window," said Jets coach Adam Gase. "He's not afraid to say anything to anyone. I think guys are hardened to it, and that's a good thing. We all get criticized in this business, we all get picked apart, and you have to have thick skin. And by doing that at least it's holding guys accountable. There are no sacred cows."

"He says what guys need to hear," added linebacker Jordan Jenkins. "He's not going to sugarcoat it. He's not going to baby you. He's not going to belittle you. He's going to treat you like a man, and you have to respond like a man. And that's it."

Well, that's not all of it when it comes to the 61-year-old Williams, the most important and perhaps riskiest addition to Gase's first Jets staff. He may be one of the most brilliant defensive minds in the NFL, but he's a controversial man, an intense personality, and most definitely an acquired taste. He became infamous for the BountyGate scandal in New Orleans, when the NFL suspended him for allegedly running a "bounty" program that paid his players for, among other things, injuring opponents.

But his current players don't need financial incentives to get his direct message. He wants them to play hard, play fast, and do whatever it takes -- even in practice. Everything is a competition. Every day, every moment, needs to be won.

And if not ... well, be prepared to hear about it, loudly. If a player doesn't like it? Too bad. No matter who he is.

"Gregg's not shy about saying anything to anyone," Gase said. "If something occurs on the field that he wants to make the correction, he's not afraid to tell him."

"It's been that way for my whole life -- I say what I mean, and I mean what I say," Williams said. "You can't BS players. You can't BS that. It has to be an everyday thing. And the thing that is easily convinced when you go to a new place is find the best guy there and make him do it. Then everybody else says, 'Uh oh.'

"Yep. 'Uh oh.' Mom and Dad didn't make you do that stuff. Mom and Dad couldn't play either."


Hiring Williams on Jan. 16 was a gutsy move for Gase. There isn't a higher-profile assistant coach in the entire league. Adding to that juice, Williams has a clear desire to be a head coach again -- a position he hasn't held since 2003 in Buffalo. He was the interim head coach in Cleveland last season when Hue Jackson was fired, but he was passed over for the permanent job when Freddie Kitchens was hired instead.

That's an imposing figure to have over a new head coach's shoulder, but Gase knew the risk had a huge reward. Gase is an offensive coach, convinced he can transform the Jets into a high-scoring juggernaut. But he needed someone who could match his expertise from the other side.

There's no doubt, that's exactly what Williams does.

"I told him the first day I met him, 'You're a pain in the ass to game-plan for,'" said Jets offensive line coach Frank Pollack. "So it's nice to have you in the same meeting room.' He's a good coach."

"God, I hate that guy," added new Jets center Ryan Kalil. "I hate Gregg Williams. He's one of those coaches though. Guys on his team love him. But God, I hate playing against Gregg Williams."

Unfortunately for Kalil and Pollack, they do still have to face Williams -- in practice. And since he arrived, the competition at Jets practices has taken on a game-like intensity. The practices are controlled, of course, just not nearly as much as they used to be. Gase and Williams try to out-scheme each other. Players and coaches keep track of who wins and loses each day. They prepare like it's a game day. There's more trash-talking, more celebrating, and even the hits seem a little harder to some.

It's a battle between Gase's offense vs. Williams' defense on the field every day. In the meeting rooms, too.

"It's like the best thing I've ever been a part of, literally," said Jets running back Le'Veon Bell. "I've literally never had anything like it. Coach Williams is a defensive genius, vs. an offensive genius (in Gase). Both of those guys go at it each and every day. It's like, 'The offense won today, the defense will win tomorrow.' Gase is like, 'OK, they want to do this, then I'm going to put this in tomorrow.'"

"That's the way you get ready for the game," said outside linebackers coach Joe Vitt, who coached with Williams in New Orleans (and drew his own six-game suspension in 2012 for his part in the BountyGate scandal). "You have to practice hard and smart with the proper intent. You can't make the same mistakes again."

That's definitely Williams' coaching style. Some coaches spend practices with their heads buried in a play card, huddling with other coaches, calmly speaking instructions into a headset. Williams paces the sidelines, barking instructions at players. He makes sure they're alert. He'll rip into them if they're not. His intensity is never turned off.

"When we have to worry about the intensity of the players, we have the wrong players," Williams said. "When we have to worry about the competition and the lack of competition in practice or games, we have the wrong people -- coaches and players."

So far, Williams believes the Jets have the right kind of people around him.

"There has been a smile on my face since I've walked in here," he said. "These young men want to compete. Whether it's an argument, whether they're playing chess or checkers in the room, where they're (doing) anything, they want to compete. And they just want to know that I'm there to pull them back if they go too far. That's what I'm supposed to be doing. "If they won't do that, we've got the wrong people. You can't win at this level without that kind of competition."


Competition is great, but it's really attitude and accountability that fuels Williams' approach. That's what caught the attention of his players. And that was his message the first time he met them.

"His first three days, all he did was talk about the culture of the defense," said linebacker C.J. Mosley. "How we were going to come on the field, how we were going to play, how we were going to run to the ball. He didn't say anything about the schemes or things like that."

And the "culture" he's trying to build, the attitude he wants every day, is simple, Mosley said.

"We want to come after the offense and not let them dictate what we do," Mosley said. "We're trying to throw the first punch."

That most definitely describes' Williams' approach -- every day, to even the smallest detail. He'll hit first, he'll hit hard, and he won't let up.

"He basically kills a gnat with a sledgehammer," linebackers coach Frank Bush said. "That's his mentality."

"It permeates," Bush added. "Because it's every day with him. It's an attitude. It's a way we go about things. And it spreads throughout the rest of the team. Because they start to see when you're that way and you try to be organized and try to do things at a high level every day, it makes a difference."



Williams doesn't change his approach with his better players, either. He's always looking for ways to spark them, to give them an edge. And he can be harsh with them, too. When he first met Jamal Adams, the Jets' fiery defensive leader, he told him, "I've coached a lot better people than you before."

Harsh? Yes. But Adams loved it.

"He's coaching us hard and he wants the best out of us," Adams said. "And you can run through a wall for a coach like that, you know what I mean?"

That approach, though, is not for every player. The accountability part of Williams' approach can be jarring. He has no problem calling out anyone, no matter their status, in front of the rest of the team. He has no issues with embarrassing a player, or forcing them to explain their mistake -- or transgression -- in front of their peers.

"It's probably something they never experienced," said Jets defensive line coach Andre Carter, who played for Williams in Washington in 2006-07. "It can be a little sensitive. But us as coaches, once we get into our position rooms, we just tell them, 'Look, what is he trying to say? What's the message?' There's content and context. You've got to be smart about 'What is the message' when Gregg is trying to talk to you as an individual and what Gregg is trying to say to the team."

In other words, as Jenkins said: "Don't listen to how he conveys the message. Listen to the message itself."

"He's very hard, very demanding, a yeller," Carter added. "But it's more about what he's trying to say. It's not just words. It's not just fluff. It's all positive. It's energetic, but it's definitely positive. He wants to bring the best out of every individual."

But Williams doesn't just do that by standing in front of a room and yelling. His communication skill does appear to go both ways. One defensive player marveled at how willing Williams was to listen to ideas from his players. They are free to offer their opinions, and often Williams gives their suggestions a try.

"I've never had a coach do that before," the player said.

"Gregg is intense, he's loud and he's an aggressive guy," Jenkins said. "But if you respect Gregg, he respects you."

"He holds people accountable," Vitt added. "But once you've earned his trust, he will listen to you."


That "trust" is big for Williams. He didn't show up at 1 Jets Drive with that sledgehammer, looking for a gnat to kill. He knew he couldn't just scream at his players that his way worked and expect them to instantly match his intensity. They had to learn to trust that he was telling the truth, that his approach would work. He needed them to become believers.

"That's another thing about the respect that you gain from players," Williams said. "They see not only do they earn the trust of each other, but I have to earn the trust of them too. They understand that I've been around for a little while and can do a lot of different things and I've seen a lot of different things."

The regular season will tell the real story of how this experiment works, but for now it seems like players on both sides of the ball have become believers in those "things." The players on defense, after too many years of underachieving, believe they'll thrive under Williams' direct approach. And that's rubbed off on the offensive players, who seem to have loved the competition and intensity during camp.

The result has been an entirely new attitude in the Jets' building. Some of that was expected when they hired Gase as their new head coach. But there's no doubt that the addition of Williams turned everything up a notch.

"You know his personality. We all know his personality," Vitt said. "His record speaks for itself. His production in this league speaks for itself."

"The level of demand from his players as well as his coaching staff is high," Carter said. "There's a whole other level of competition in our meeting rooms and just in general day to day on the field. When you want to become a great defense, that's what you need."

Tags: CJ Mosley, Jordan Jenkins, Le'Veon Bell, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Butch Dill)
(Butch Dill)

Jets GM Joe Douglas has said multiple times that rebuilding the team's offensive line was the main priority this offseason, but when it comes to the team's 11th overall pick in the 2020 draft, could Gang Green bypass a lineman for a wide receiver?

It sounds like Alabama wideout Henry Ruggs III could be making a very strong case.

Heading into this year's NFL Combine, there was a report that the Jets "have had their eyes on him for a while," and his 4.27 40-yard-dash time certainly didn't hurt Ruggs' draft stock. 

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Both the Jets and Giants have turned the offensive reins over to young quarterbacks, as Sam Darnold will begin his third year with the Jets and Daniel Jones will begin his second season with Big Blue in 2020.

On the latest edition of Loud Mouths: The Great Debate, SNY's Justine Ward and contributor Jon Hein discuss who they have more faith in among the young QBs ...

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Aug 24, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Rams safety Marqui Christian (26) stands on the field during the first half against the Denver Broncos at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)
Aug 24, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Rams safety Marqui Christian (26) stands on the field during the first half against the Denver Broncos at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)

The Jets and defensive back Marqui Christian reportedly agreed to terms on a one-year deal last Saturday, but it now seems like the deal will not be finalized.

Per Brian Costello of the New York Post, the Jets and Christian could not agree to final contract terms, and the team is now moving on.

Christian, originally a fifth-round pick of Arizona in 2016, had reportedly agreed to a one-year, $1.25 million deal with Gang Green shortly after the team officially parted ways with Darryl Roberts.

Tags: Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye
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On the debut of Football Night in New York: Living Room Edition, the panel -- made up of SNY's Jeané Coakley, Jonas Schwartz and Ralph Vacchiano -- breaks down the offseason progress for the Jets and the Giants.

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 (Bob Donnan)
(Bob Donnan)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The Jets' offensive overhaul continued with the addition of former Carolina Panthers guard Greg Van Roten over the weekend.

Much like George Fant, Van Roten took an unusual path to where he is now. The 30-year-old did a solid job over the past few seasons as a starter with the Panthers, but prior to that, he had been out of the league for several years and spent two years playing in the CFL. He didn't make his first NFL start until he was 28.

Tags: Brian Winters
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Jan 29, 2020; Miami, Florida, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goodell during a press conference before Super Bowl LIV at Hilton Downtown. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Jan 29, 2020; Miami, Florida, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goodell during a press conference before Super Bowl LIV at Hilton Downtown. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

When it comes to the 2020 NFL Draft, it sounds like the show must go on. 

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell sent a memo to all 32 NFL teams on Thursday evening, stating that the NFL Council Executive Committee has unanimously agreed that the 2020 draft should go on as planned on April 23-25, despite the coronavirus outbreak.

In the memo, Goodell noted that circumstances could change the league's plans in the next several weeks, but for now, teams should be prepared for the draft to take place at the end of April.

Goodell wrote that the draft "will obviously need to be conducted in a different way," and that all public events have already been canceled.

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Dec 29, 2019; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (left) pose for a photo after a jersey exchange following the game at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports (Rich Barnes)
Dec 29, 2019; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (left) pose for a photo after a jersey exchange following the game at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports (Rich Barnes)

Jets QB Sam Darnold and Buffalo Bills QB Josh Allen will always be linked, as the two were taken just four picks apart in the top seven of the 2018 NFL Draft, with both landing in the AFC East.

And now, with the sports world on hold due to the coronavirus outbreak, the two are paired together once again.

According to a report from Albert Breer of The MMQB, Darnold, Allen, and new Washington Redskins quarterback Kyle Allen are all working out together in Southern California.

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Jets GM Joe Douglas added a familiar face in LB Patrick "Peanut" Onwuasor on Wednesday in his latest free agent move to bolster his defense. Onwuasor is a great linebacker that has played in a starting and depth role, and has had time playing next to C.J. Mosley

The only problem is Onwuasor has officially created a logjam of linebackers at One Jets Drive. 

Maybe that's exactly what Douglas wanted -- some linebacker competition when training camp kicks off. Because that's exactly what will have to occur in this position group when head coach Adam Gase and defensive coordinator Gregg Williams work together to build the defense for the 55-man roster. 

Tags: Avery Williamson, Blake Cashman, CJ Mosley, Jordan Jenkins, Neville Hewitt, Scott Thompson
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Connor McGovern
Connor McGovern

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Of all players signed so far this offseason by the Jets, offensive lineman Connor McGovern could be the biggest. He's reportedly been guaranteed $18 million -- almost twice as much as any of the new additions -- on a three-year, $27 million deal.

At this stage, you could arguably say he's the only new addition who is definitely in the Jets' plans beyond this season. Therefore, let's give consideration to what those plans might be.

McGovern was a fifth-round pick out of Missouri and spent his entire rookie year with the Broncos as a healthy scratch. Over the next three seasons, he gradually worked his way into full-time role. After spending most of 2017 as a rotational lineman, McGovern started the last five games at right guard, then began the 2018 season as the starter in the same role. Midway through the season, Matt Paradis was lost to a season-ending injury, so McGovern moved into the starting center role before being made the full-time center in 2019.

Tags: Nick Mangold
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Robby Anderson
Robby Anderson

Former Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson is now a member of the Carolina Panthers, and he took time on Wednesday to call out a report that he turned down a long-term deal with the Jets.

WFAN's Boomer Esiason claimed he was told that the Jets had a four-year, $40 million offer on the table for Anderson, who ended up signing a two-year, $20 million deal with the Panthers, with $12 million guaranteed. 

"False news y'all need to better jobs reporting and putting out fake news too ppl," Anderson tweeted.

Tags: Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold
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Joe Douglas/Justin Jefferson
Joe Douglas/Justin Jefferson

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Jets have eight draft picks, including four in the first two days of the draft. That, of course, includes the third-rounder they got from the Giants in the Leonard Williams trade.

Considering how many holes they have to fill after their slow trip through the free agent market, they certainly can put those picks to good use. Exactly how they'll do that is hard to know with one month still to go until the draft starts.

But here's an early projection, based on the team's needs, what sources have said about players they might like, and what scouts have said about the value of certain players in the draft...

Tags: Bless Austin , Brian Poole, Jamison Crowder, Leonard Williams, Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold, Trumaine Johnson, Ralph Vacchiano
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Nov 3, 2019; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens inside linebacker Patrick Onwuasor (48) reacts during the first quarter against the New England Patriots at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Nov 3, 2019; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens inside linebacker Patrick Onwuasor (48) reacts during the first quarter against the New England Patriots at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

GM Joe Douglas added another former Raven to his roster, agreeing to terms on a one-year deal with LB Patrick Onwuasor, SNY's Ralph Vacchiano confirmed on Wednesday. 

Affectionately known as "Peanut," Onwuasor adds linebacker depth for Gregg Williams' defense that saw his first-teamers C.J. Mosley and Avery Williamson rarely on the field in 2019. Williamson was lost in the preseason to a torn ACL, and Mosley constantly battled a groin injury that forced him to miss 14 games in his first year with the Jets. 

Coming out of Arizona in 2016, Onwuasor went undrafted and Baltimore picked him up. He earned his spot on the team and quickly assumed a larger role one year later.

Tags: Avery Williamson, CJ Mosley, Jordan Jenkins, Scott Thompson
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Robby Anderson has found a new home in the NFL, signing a two-year deal with the Panthers worth $20 million over that span. And it was a tough blow to the Jets, who simply waited too long to land the man that could've been their No. 1 receiver for Sam Darnold

So, as Anderson unfortunately makes his way down to Carolina, it's only right to put together some of No. 11's best highlights in green and white. 

Here are the best moments from the self-proclaimed "Sun God" that showcase his blazing speed, which can be seen in this crazy play from just last season...

Tags: Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold, Scott Thompson
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Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The recent offensive line additions made by the Jets have earned the most attention, and with good reason. Four of the six new additions so far are offensive linemen, as were the recipients of all four of the multi-year deals given out to new or re-signed players.

However, the Jets also brought in two defensive backs on one-year deals. Former Rams safety Marqui Christian and former Colts cornerback Pierre Desir should bring an injection of talent into the secondary. Let's consider how these two players could fit into Gregg Williams' defense.

Tags: Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye
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Apr 25, 2019; Nashville, TN, USA; Quinnen Williams (Alabama) stands with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell after he was selected as the number three overall pick to the New York Jets in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft in Downtown Nashville. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)
Apr 25, 2019; Nashville, TN, USA; Quinnen Williams (Alabama) stands with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell after he was selected as the number three overall pick to the New York Jets in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft in Downtown Nashville. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)

As of now, the 2020 NFL Draft is still scheduled to take place in Las Vegas from April 23-25, and it sounds like the NFL is hoping to keep it that way, despite some push-back from some general managers around the league.

According to a report from ESPN's Adam Schefter and Dianna Russini, the league's GM subcommittee has unanimously recommended that the draft be pushed back due to the coronavirus outbreak. Russini later said that differing accounts had the voting at 6-1, but either way, there was an overwhelming majority.

Some league GMs fear that there could be a competitive disadvantage since some teams may have easier access to their own facilities, while teams like the Jets and Giants in New Jersey would have a tougher time given local restrictions due to Covid-19.

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Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Here's a player-by-player report card for the Jets' free agent signings so far:


OT George Fant (three years, $23.7 million, $13.7 million guaranteed)

Joe Douglas' first free-agent signing as Jets GM was a bit of a shocker, giving a huge pay day to Seattle's backup tackle. It's a gamble, for sure, but Fant is huge (6-foot-5, 322 pounds), powerful, and he has started 24 games over the last four seasons (He missed all of 2017 with a torn ACL).

Tags: Brian Poole, Jonotthon Harrison, Jordan Jenkins, Ralph Vacchiano
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Gang Green didn't waste much time at all in finding a replacement for Robby Anderson.

SNY's Ralph Vacchiano has confirmed that the Jets have signed wide receiver Breshad Perriman to a one-year deal worth a max of $8 million, with $6 million guaranteed.

The wide receiver market had been moving at a very slow pace, but once Anderson agreed to a two-year deal with the Carolina Panthers, other receivers quickly started coming off the board. Shortly after it was announced that Devin Funchess was heading to the Packers, the Jets struck an agreement with Perriman. 

Tags: Robby Anderson
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Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Robby Anderson always considered himself a No. 1 receiver, even if few others did. The Jets certainly valued his speed and his potential, and they seemed pleased with the improvement they saw towards the end of last season.

But they never viewed him as their No. 1 in the past or for the future. So losing him to the Carolina Panthers isn't necessarily a big deal.

The real big deal is the problem they're going to have replacing him.

Tags: Jamison Crowder, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Ralph Vacchiano
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Robby Anderson
Robby Anderson

The Jets were waiting for Robby Anderson's price to go down, but the wide receiver didn't want to wait any longer to sign a new deal.

SNY's Ralph Vacchiano confirmed that Anderson has signed a two-year deal with the Carolina Panthers worth $20 million, which includes $12 million guaranteed.

Anderson was looking for a deal around the $13-14 million range per season, but Vacchiano has been reporting that the Jets weren't going to go that high to sign him. They wanted it around the $9-10 million range. Carolina, then, offering $12 million for the first year was the kicker there despite the deal being $10 million AAV. 

Tags: Robby Anderson, Scott Thompson
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In the latest edition of "Out of Office Replies," SNY's lead Jets reporter Jeane Coakley explains why Jordan Jenkins returning is a good thing. She also thinks Le'Veon Bell is going to flourish from the o-line changes -- not just Sam Darnold...

Tags: Jordan Jenkins
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Jets GM Joe Douglas and Giants GM Dave Gettleman (Treated Image by SNY)
Jets GM Joe Douglas and Giants GM Dave Gettleman (Treated Image by SNY)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The good teams use free agency to fill needs, which theoretically frees them up to take the best available player in the draft. It doesn't always work that way, of course, because teams tend to have plenty of needs.

But what they do in free agency definitely impacts their choices in the draft a month later. So now that free agency is one-week old, and most of the top players have signed, here's a look at where the Top 11 picks in the NFL Draft are likely to stand:

1. Cincinnati Bengals - LSU QB Joe Burrow

Absolutely nothing has changed. They avoided the Quarterback Carousel, as expected, despite the plethora of big names spinning around. And even though players like Jameis Winston and Cam Newton are still available, they continue to resist temptation. That's because they are laser-focused on the best quarterback in the draft. They may get a few offers from teams looking to move up and grab him, but it's almost a lock that the Bengals will stay right where they are and pick the man everyone knows they're going to take.

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GM Joe Douglas continues to bolster his secondary, re-signing S Bennett Jackson for the 2020 season, per The Athletic's Connor Hughes.

Like Arthur Maulet, who re-signed with the Jets as well, Jackson wasn't offered a tender as a restricted free agent. So the Jets signed him to a new deal. Though the details haven't been released yet, the deal should be expected to be for one year. 

Jackson's NFL story is one of trial and tribulation, but his dream of making it into an NFL regular season game became a reality in 2019 when he suited up in Week 7 with the Ravens. He'd played in three more weeks for the Ravens after that before returning to the Jets for Weeks 14 and 15. 

Tags: Bennett Jackson, Brian Poole, Scott Thompson
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Nov 20, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks offensive tackle George Fant (74) participates in pregame warmups against the Philadelphia Eagles at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Nicholson)
Nov 20, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks offensive tackle George Fant (74) participates in pregame warmups against the Philadelphia Eagles at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Nicholson)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

When news broke of the Jets' first free agent signing last week, this was met with bewilderment by many Jets fans, especially when it was reported they were giving him a deal worth $10 million per year.

Earlier this month, we identified George Fant as a possible bargain pick-up in free agency, but few expected him to command a contract of that size. Nevertheless, he was a player we felt could be a useful pickup, and the Jets obviously felt the same way to go to a number that high to secure his services. So let's review some of the things he brings to the table and what his role might be.

Fant first arrived on the NFL scene in 2016 when he was forced into the starting lineup at left tackle for the Seattle Seahawks due to injuries. Having barely played any college football, the converted basketball player was understandably extremely raw, and at times, looked completely overmatched.

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Nov 3, 2019; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Indianapolis Colts cornerback Pierre Desir (35) looks on before playing the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field. The Steelers won 26-24. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
Nov 3, 2019; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Indianapolis Colts cornerback Pierre Desir (35) looks on before playing the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field. The Steelers won 26-24. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

How CB PIerre Desir ended up with the Jets isn't anything new for him. 

The Colts surprisingly cut the veteran they signed to a three-year, $25 million extension last season, and it was an obvious shock to Desir. Talking with The Athletic's Connor Hughes, Desir said the emotions were definitely there. 

But then a call from the Jets came a half hour after the Colts told him at noon on Saturday that he was being released. He called the situation "a blessing." 

Tags: Brian Poole, Trumaine Johnson, Scott Thompson
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Dec 29, 2019; Orchard Park, New York, USA; General view of a New York Jets helmet prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports (Rich Barnes)
Dec 29, 2019; Orchard Park, New York, USA; General view of a New York Jets helmet prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports (Rich Barnes)

Following the lead of other pro teams around the country, the Jets want to try and make a difference as we all fight the spread of coronavirus here in the states. 

So the Jets and the Johnson Family announced Monday via twitter that they will be donating $1 million to help support local efforts in combating the pandemic. The funds will be spread out between the New York City, northern New Jersey and Long Island sections of United Way.

"The United Way continues to improve lives around the world and we need community-based organizations more than ever at this moment," Jets CEO Christopher Johnson said via newyorkjets.com. "Everyone has been impacted by this invisible enemy and the United Way is meeting it head-on at home, helping those disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 and the economic consequences of the outbreak."

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Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Jets general manager Joe Douglas stated publicly that the team was going to make the offensive line a priority in free agency this offseason. And he wasn't kidding. So far, the Jets have agreed to terms with four new offensive linemen and re-signed last year's left guard, Alex Lewis.

Looking at the players the Jets have brought in, some very clear patterns have emerged, from which we can infer several things about the plans for Adam Gase's offense in 2020.

It's not completely clear where each of these pieces will fit into the offensive line next season, in part because the team probably hasn't finished in terms of its overhaul process. While it perhaps now seems unlikely they'll make a splashy move for a big name like Trent Williams, they could still opt to re-sign Kelvin Beachum and are still expected to draft at least one offensive lineman early on in next month's draft.

Tags: Brandon Shell, Brian Winters, Kelvin Beachum, Le'Veon Bell
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It didn't look that way at first, but OLB Jordan Jenkins will indeed be re-signing with the Jets on a one-year deal, SNY's Ralph Vacchiano confirmed on Monday. The deal is worth $5 million.

The Jets initially let Jenkins walk into free agency, knowing that he may not return. The Giants were a team that Vacchiano reported as being interested in landing the man that led their crosstown rival in sacks with eight last season. However, after remaining patient, the Jets made an offer and Jenkins wanted it. 

According to Mehta, Jenkins' main reason for returning was to play for defensive coordinator Gregg Williams once again. And that makes sense because of that sack total, as Williams found a way to use Jenkins effectively. 

Tags: Jordan Jenkins, Scott Thompson
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Nov 3, 2019; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets defensive tackle Quinnen Williams (95) reacts after sacking Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Nov 3, 2019; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets defensive tackle Quinnen Williams (95) reacts after sacking Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (14) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

Jets DL Quinnen Williams' court appearance stemming from his arrest at LaGuardia Airport earlier this month for criminal possession of a weapon has been delayed, his attorney told Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News.

The appearance, scheduled for March 25, was pushed back due to New York's coronavirus restrictions.

Williams, 22, was arrested at the Delta check-in counter prior to security at around 9:15 p.m. on March 6 while trying to board a flight. Williams has a permit for the weapon in Alabama. 

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Robby Anderson
Robby Anderson

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The more people around the NFL fell in love with the large group of receivers in the draft, the more they warned about what might happen in free agency. They knew Robby Anderson was looking for a big payday, but they increasingly doubted it was going to happen.

So far, it appears they're right.

Tags: Robby Anderson, Ralph Vacchiano
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Joe Douglas
Joe Douglas

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Jets general manager Joe Douglas told anyone who would listen that he was going to focus on rebuilding the offensive line this offseason -- and boy, did he ever. Four of the six free agents he signed from other teams were offensive linemen, and he brought back one from last year's Jets, too.

And that's great. The Jets' line should be better and stronger and deeper in 2020, which means more protection for quarterback Sam Darnold and running back Le'Veon Bell. The Jets' offense will be better, and obviously that's important.

But what about everything else Douglas still has to do?

Tags: Brian Poole, Jamison Crowder, Jordan Jenkins, Josh McCown, Le'Veon Bell, Markus Golden, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold, Trevor Siemian, Trumaine Johnson, Ralph Vacchiano
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