Free Agent Primer: Ray Edwards

The third in GWR's series on potential free agent signings on the defensive side of the ball.

With 18 upcoming free agents on the team, New York Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum and head coach Rex Ryan's will have some big decision to make this offseason. Thankfully, we at the Green and White Report will not have to make any of these personnel decisions, but we offer up a handful of viable free agent targets for Gang Green's sore spot, their defensive line.

The third in our series of impact players on the horizon for the Jets –

Defensive End Ray Edwards, Minnesota Vikings

The Skinny:

Edwards would infuse speed and athleticism to a defensive line that is lacking in both departments, not to mention a unit that actually needs bodies. In his fifth year out of Purdue, Edwards had a productive 2010 season amassing 10 sacks including registering 1.5 sacks of quarterback Mark Sanchez in Week 5. He's a great pass rusher, something the Jets need coming off the edge in the 3-4 and the fact that Edwards is clearly on the rise by increasing his sack total the last three seasons and at 26 years old, could energize a geriatric Jets defensive line. The question becomes at what price will the Jets be willing to bring him in? The Vikings placed a first round tender on Edwards so the question becomes do the Jets feel they can get as good of a value when they pick late in the first round?

The Fit:

Edwards fills a tremendous void in the Jets line, but will need to adjust from Minnesota's 4-3 base defense to Rex Ryan's intricate 3-4. New York may have to work Edwards into the rotation so he can become acclimated to a new defensive system. Once Edwards grasps his role and assignments, the sky is the limit for this up and coming pass rusher.

The Vikings seem relegated to losing him this offseason and he might give general manager Mike Tannenbaum reason to pause. Picking late in the first round, can the Jets really do better than a young defensive end who is proven at the N.F.L. level?

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