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Free-agent safety Jim Leonhard is a talented safety who has fallen victim to the unwillingness of teams to sign an injured player and risk guaranteed money. The New York Jets have refused to re-sign Leonhard due to a PCL tear suffered last December that derailed a solid 2011 season.
Leonhard emerged as a solid starter in 2008 with the Baltimore Ravens before signing with New York prior to the 2009 season. Since then, Leonhard has proven to be an all-around solid safety in defending the pass, rushing the quarterback and stuffing the run.
Leonhard is versatile, with the ability to play both free safety and strong safety. This would appeal to a team like Denver that has a couple of young safeties in Quinton Carter and Rahim Moore who are not set at either position.
Carter and Moore saw time at both safety positions and are in the mix for starting positions, along with recently signed free agent Mike Adams. Leonhard would be an immediate upgrade on all three at safety.
New York GM Mike Tannenbaum has stated that the organization is still keeping tabs on Leonhard, but with the addition of free agent LaRon Landry, the team may move on without Leonhard.
Leonhard will still be undergoing rehabilitation for the PCL injury well into the summer, but should be a player that Denver keeps a close eye on. Leonhard can be a dynamic player when healthy and is still relatively young at 29 years old.
The signing of Leonhard could fill the void left by future Hall of Fame safety Brian Dawkins this offseason.