In case you didn't understand the title of this article, sing it to the song "Bennie and the Jets." Recently, Bart Scott spoke to the New York Post and stated that one of the reasons the Buffalo Bills defense struggled this season was due to the fact that Rex Ryan didn't bring over many NY Jets in free agency last season. The only Jets defender on Buffalo's 53-man roster for the majority of the season, I.K. Enemkpali, joined the Bills in early August.
Many people believe that Ryan wanted to bring David Harris with him to Buffalo, but the Jets made sure to re-sign the linebacker before Ryan ever had the chance. This offseason, there are multiple Jets defenders that Ryan could look to bring in. These are players who could see significant playing time and could help players adjust on the field to Ryan's defensive playcalls, if needed. It's apparent that Ryan wants to bring in as many people as possible who understand his defense. Look no further than Buffalo's two newest coaches, Rob Ryan and Ed Reed. Although both coaches will be able help players off the field, Ryan needs some players who can help on the field. Here's a look at four Jets that Buffalo could pursue in free agency.
Damon Harrison, NT
Harrison is an intriguing option for Buffalo. He's still relatively young at 27 years old and shouldn't break the bank in free agency. On the field, Harrison is outstanding in run defense. In 2015, Harrison won Pro Football Focus' Ted Washington Award for best run defender in the NFL.
PFF stated that in the last eight weeks of the season, Harrison was responsible for 35 run game stops. The next closest player had 26. Buffalo has plenty of money tied up in their defensive line, but if the price is right Harrison makes a lot of sense for the Bills.
DeMario Davis, ILB
Although Davis was rather underwhelming on the field in 2015, he certainly looked better under Rex Ryan. As noted by Matthew Fairburn of syracuse.com, Davis played under Ryan for three seasons and recorded over 220 tackles under Ryan as a full-time starter. Anyone who watched the Bills last season knows that linebacker play was a major concern. Davis' addition could certainly help Buffalo.
Buffalo's cap situation won't allow them to pursue any expensive free agents, but Davis should be rather affordable in free agency. Although Davis is far from a superstar, he'd be able to help players adjust on the field as a member of the Bills.
There is a lot of uncertainty at safety for the Bills. Corey Graham's play declined over the course of the season and after suffering a serious neck injury, can Aaron Williams be depended upon? It's possible that neither player is with the Bills in 2016. Adding a safety in free agency could help the Bills brace themselves if Graham is a cap casualty or if Williams has any issues with his neck. Jarrett is another player that knows Ryan's defense after spending two seasons with Rex. Jarrett has only started seven games over the last two seasons but he's another player who could call out defenses and properly line players up on the field.
Calvin Pace, OLB
Leading up to their Week 17 matchup, Pace predicted that the Bills/Jets game would be a "bloodbath" and that Ryan would be throwing everything at the Jets. The bloodbath part never came to fruition but Ryan did throw quite a bit at the Jets in a 22-17 Bills win. After being swept by his former coach, Pace look for a reunion. At 35 years old, Pace isn't going to command much of a salary in free agency and he's certainly lost a step. That said, adding Pace would give the Bills a veteran who can mentor the linebackers on and off the field. No active player has more knowledge of Ryan's defense. Pace was with the Jets during Ryan's entire tenure as a head coach.null