The New York Jets are still hoping to bolster their defense through free agency
According to Connor Hughes of The Athletic, the Jets are “very interested” in two veteran defensive free agents: defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi and linebacker Kwon Alexander.
Jets very interested in both, per sources. Comes down to them making a decision. https://t.co/Y7MQ2iTgWB
— Connor Hughes (@Connor_J_Hughes) May 11, 2022
Hughes adds that it “comes down to [Ogunjobi and Alexander] making a decision.”
Ogunjobi played and started in 16 games for the Cincinnati Bengals last season, enjoying a career year as he recorded 7.0 sacks, 16 quarterback hits, and 49 total tackles (12 tackles for loss). He suffered a season-ending foot injury in the playoffs that required surgery.
Following his impressive 2021 season, Ogunjobi was one of the top defenders on the 2022 free-agent market. Ogunjobi agreed with the Chicago Bears on a three-year, $40.5 million deal shortly after free agency opened in March, but the contract was rescinded after Ogunjobi failed his physical.
Ogunjobi will turn 28 years old in June. He was selected by the Cleveland Browns as a third-round pick out of Charlotte in 2017.
A former Pro Bowler (earning the nod in 2017 with Tampa Bay), Alexander played in 12 games for the New Orleans Saints last season, starting eight. He recorded 3.5 sacks, seven quarterback hits, 50 total tackles (7 tackles for loss), and one interception.
Jets head coach Robert Saleh knows Alexander from their days together in San Francisco. Alexander was a member of the 49ers in 2019 and 2020, participating in the 49ers’ post-2019 run to Super Bowl LIV.
Alexander will turn 28 in August. He was selected by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers out of LSU in the fourth round of the 2015 draft. Alexander showed high-end potential early in his career but injuries have been an issue for him, as he has not played more than 12 games in a season since 2016.
Defensive tackle and linebacker are two of the thinnest positions on New York’s roster, so it’s no surprise to see Douglas exploring options to solidify the depth at each spot. We’ll see if the Jets can reel in one or both of these players.