NFL Free Agency 2011: Who Is Staying and Who Is Going for the New York Jets

Cole TesslerCorrespondent IJuly 21, 2016

NFL Free Agency 2011: Who Is Staying and Who Is Going for the New York Jets

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    One of the reasons many experts said it's all or nothing for the Jets this season is because of the number of free agents the Jets have this year.

    Now they have many tough decisions to make this offseason as many key players are free agents. 

    They can't keep everybody so here is who's staying and who's going for the Jets.

David Harris

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    David Harris had one of his best years in his four-season career. He is a promising linebacker who many are calling one of the most underrated players in the NFL.

    He played a key role in the Jets success stopping the run, which was ranked third this season. He was a staple to the Jets defense with 99 tackles and three sacks.

    The former Michigan Wolverine was also voted for the team MVP.

     

    Staying or going: Staying

    Harris is the Jets' top priority of all the free agents. Expect Harris to get a big contract and for him to be one of the first Jets player to be re-signed.

Santonio Holmes

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    The Jets traded for Holmes with a fifth-round pick in what now seems like a huge steal. Despite serving a four-game suspension, he became Sanchez's top target with 746 yards and eight touchdowns in 15 games (including the playoffs). 

    Holmes was a big playmaker this season with his great hands and blazing speed. 

     

    Staying or going: Staying

    It's going to be hard for the Jets to keep both Edwards and Holmes. It seems like it's going to come down to which one they want most, and that player would be Santonio Holmes.

    Also, you have to take into account that Holmes was well behaved this season unlike Edwards with his DUI arrest early in the season.

Braylon Edwards

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    Edwards improved significantly this season racking up 904 yards and seven touchdowns, as opposed to last season where he only 541 yards and four scores.

    He also improved his catching skills greatly. Last year he had a bad case of the dropsies but in 2010 he rarely dropped passes.

    An DUI in the beginning of the season might still put him in a bad light with the organization.

     

    Staying or going: Going

    Again, it might come down to Holmes or Edwards and Holmes wins that battle. It's very tough to keep both with all the free agents this year. 

    Still, the Jets are very thin at WR with only having four on the active roster. It's tough to call if the Jets will keep both, but for now expect Edwards to gone next year.

Antonio Cromartie

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    Antonio Cromartie had a good season with the Jets. He did a great job replacing Revis in the beginning of the season and was good throughout the season.

    He has his flaws though: He is afraid to get physical and had trouble with penalties and was exposed by Pierre Garcon in the first round of the playoffs.

     

    Staying or going: Staying

    Jets are thin at the cornerback position with Kyle Wilson looking like a bust in his first season.

    Cromartie has his flaws, but he had a good season and considering the Jets gave up a second-round pick for him, I doubt they will get rid of their investment.

LaDainian Tomlinson

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    The Jets originally wanted to make Shonn Greene their feature back this year, but he struggled in the beginning so they went with Tomlinson.

    Tomlinson did great in the beginning of the season but struggled at the end. The opposite went for Shonn Greene who stepped up at the end of the year.

    Although Tomlinson is not a free agent, there have been talks about the Jets cutting him in order to save money.

    Tomlinson had 914 rushing yards this season and six touchdowns. He has also been a great receiving back for Sanchez and helped him find a check-down back when he was in trouble.

     

    Staying or going: Going

    The Jets will probably make Shonn Greene their feature back and will reduce Tomlinson's role next season. Also, with the success of Joe McKnight against the Bills, the Jets might consider McKnight to have the potential to upgrade to a second back that can receive like Tomlinson.

    With all the free agents that the Jets need to sign, it's not looking good for Tomlinson.


Shaun Ellis

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    Shaun Ellis is entering his 12th season in the NFL, all with the Jets.

    His production dropped this year from 6.5 sacks last year to 4.5 sacks this year and 53 tackles last year to 36 this year.

     

    Staying or going: Staying

    Defensive end is another position the Jets are thin at and I doubt they want another position to need. Ellis is getting old so they will probably sign him to a short-term contract for not that much money.

    There still is a pretty big chance he might be going because of his age and the Jets' struggle with pass rushing throughout the season.

Brad Smith

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    Brad Smith was a key player in the offense, confusing defenses with the Seminole formation. He also was a key player on special teams, returning multiple kicks for touchdowns during the season.

     

    Staying or going: 50/50 chance either way

    Brad Smith is too important to the special teams and the offense. His speed and threat to throw keep defenses on their toes in the Seminole formation. He is one of the best kick returners in the NFL.

    However, he is replaceable though. Cromartie did a great job returning kicks in the Colts game and the Jets are in talks with CFL player, Chad Owens, who is similar to Smith. It really depends on how much Smith wants; right now I'm saying there's a 50/50 chance he leaves.

Other Free Agents

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    Brodney Pool: Staying

    Had some rough spots in the season but finished strong.

     

    Tony Richardson: Going

    He's probably retiring, but either way the Jets don't need him now that they have John Connor.

     

    Drew Coleman: Going

    Will probably be replaced with Kyle Wilson.

     

    Eric Smith: Staying

    A great backup, stepped up as a starter for Jim Leohnard.

     

    James Ihedigbo: Staying

    A key blitzer and special teams player; he will stay.

     

    Nick Folk: Going

    His inconsistency seems to be a concern. Seems 50/50 whether he will play again for the Jets or not.

     

    Steve Weatherford: Staying

    Improved greatly as a punter this season; no chance he's leaving.

     

    Kellen Clemens: Going

    Will probably want to try and pursue his dreams of becoming a starter somewhere else.