The New York Jets have reportedly come to terms with former Denver Bronco, Eric Decker. Decker visited with Gang Green on Wednesday in Florham Park, eventually deciding to stay. The 27-year old receiver was drafted in the third round out of the University of Minnesota by the Broncos in 2010. Since joining the Broncos, he has recorded 222 catches, 3,070 yards, and 33 touchdowns. Having increased his level of play each year has led him to back-to-back 1,000 yard and 10-plus touchdown seasons. Despite this success being linked to Peyton Manning, Decker's progression as a No.1 receiver is a tribute to his excellent receiving abilities.
The newly acquired receiver will be replacing Santonio Holmes as the team's top receiver. His 6-foot-3 215 pound frame is a solid target for second year quarterback Geno Smith to throw to. With a much needed upgrades at the skill position, the Jets' main priority was to sign at least one young, rising receiver in free agency and they got one in Decker. Decker has progressed since coming to the league in 2010. He has steadily increased his stats, recording more catches, yards, and touchdowns in each season. He has spent the past two years learning the complicated scheme that comes with having Manning as quarterback, so making the adjustment to a more balanced run to pass scheme will not be hard for Decker.
He will get more rest between plays as well, as the Jets do not stay in the no-huddle, fast-paced offense like the Broncos do. This is important because the much needed rest between plays and the less complicated playbook may benefit Decker by increasing his production.
Decker has good hands, being a very reliable target in the passing game. He does lack elite speed however, but his excellent route running and his quickness in and out of cuts are a good substitute in getting separation from defenders. Having such a favorable frame, Decker is durable. Durability has been an issue for New York's receiving corps, as the team's receivers never seemed to be healthy enough to stay on the field. He is also not afraid to get physical with receivers, as he blocks and is not afraid to run over the middle to make the catch in heavy traffic.
Signing the top-ranked receiver in this year's free agent frenzy has immediately improved the passing attack of the Jets' offense. He automatically fills the role of the No.1 receiver on the team, as well as becoming an instant leader for the young skills players. Being a veteran and having Super Bowl experience will be valuable for his new quarterback and his young offense. Decker was a great addition by GM John Idzik, as signing the fifth year receiver immediately poses a threat to opposing defenses.