The Jets' short list includes free agents Dave Szott (Redskins, visited Tuesday), Bob Hallen (Falcons, visited Wednesday), and Chris Naeole (Saints, visited today). The Jets are an attractive team to the 6'4", 289 lbs. Szott who after 13 years in the league is looking to end his career close to his home in New Jersey. It remains to be seen if the Jets, who are quietly exercising a plan for a youth movement, would actually invest in the veteran guard who turns 35 in December.
Bob Hallen, known for his cerebral play and versatility, started 12 games at LG for the Atlanta Falcons last year. At 6'4", 295 lbs., the 27 year old Hallen already has a Super Bowl experience in his 5 years in the league. He also (unfortunately) already has something in common with the Jets...a season-ending loss courtesy of the 1998 Denver Broncos.
On paper, Chris Naeole would be the best fit of the three. Naeole was the 10th overall selection of the Saints in 1997 out of Colorado. At 6'3", 313 lbs., and only turning 28 in December, the 6-year vet would make the Jets' interior OL one of the strongest in the league. Which way will the Jets go to fill the void at LG? At this point we don't really know, but the player who is eventually signed will be in good company starting between LT Jason Fabini and Pro-Bowl C Kevin Mawae.
As for the other side of the line, Mark Cannizzaro reports for ESPN.com...The Jets have decided to continue looking at class acts and quality individuals to re-tool the defense. After wining and dining ex-Titans DT Josh Evans and reportedly offering him a four-year contract, the Jets have pushed the Evans deal off the table.
According to sources, the Jets were contacted by a league official and were advised to hold off on signing Evans. Soon after, it became public that Evans had violated the NFL's substance abuse policy for the third time in his 7-year career. Now Newsday is reporting the Jets are close to re-signing DT Shane Burton.