The New York Jets made major strides this offseason address the hole at the safety position. Two of Gang Green's notable signings were safeties LaRon Landry and Yeremiah Bell. With arguably the best cornerback tandem in the league in Antonio Cromartie and Darrelle Revis, the Jets greatly improved their support in the defensive backfield.
On March 19, Landry signed a one-year deal with the Jets worth $3.5 million with $700,000 guaranteed. Coming off an injury plagued season with the Washington Redskins, Landry missed most of the year with an Achilles tendon injury. The five-year veteran has been Pro Bowl caliber talent since he was selected with the sixth overall pick in 2007 NFL draft. A product of Les Miles and the Louisiana State Tigers, Landry was a standout in college, recording 80 tackles as a true freshman in just 10 games played. Following strong sophomore and junior campaigns, the Louisiana-born Landry was named Consensus All-American and first team All-SEC.
Strengths: Landry is a powerful defensive back, capable of unleashing devastating tackles on unsuspecting receivers and halfbacks. Landry knows how to use all of his 6-foot, 220 lb frame to deliver massive hits. He is substantially better at man coverage than zone coverage. While not an interception machine, Landry has good hands capable of reeling in poor throws by opposing quarterbacks.
Landry plays with a chip on his shoulder and enjoys playing with a fierceness that not only intimidates the opposition but also greatly improves the morale of his own team. In just five seasons with the Redskins, Landry recorded 80 or more tackles three times. If healthy, his stellar production should continue as a new member of Gang Green.
Weaknesses: Landry's major weakness is being an injury-prone player. In his time in the NFL, Landry has only started a full 16 games twice. In recent years, Landry's seasons have been cut short due to consecutive Achilles tendon injury. In 2010, Landry played in just nine games. In Week 5, he was named Defensive Player of the week and coach Mike Shanahan believed that had he been healthy all year, was a candidate for Defensive Player of the Year.
Trying to avoid surgery, Landry received platelet-rich plasma treatments that allowed him to return the following year. In 2011, Landry missed the first two games of the season with a strained hamstring and the final four games when he re-aggravated his Achilles injury.
Career Highlights: Landry has made his impact on the field felt on number of occasions. His first career sack came against the Jets in his rookie season when he blasted Kellen Clemens with a huge hit. In his first playoff game, Landry recorded five tackles and his first career interception (along with a second interception).
In 2009, in an overtime loss against the New Orleans Saints, Landry recorded 12 solo tackles including a sack and three pass defenses. His career best game came in 2010 against the Green Bay Packers where he recorded 13 tackles, one pass defense, a forced fumble, and an overtime interception of Aaron Rodgers that led to the game-winning field goal for the Redskins.