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Report: Jets Release 2019 3rd-Round Pick Jachai Polite

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistAugust 31, 2019

ATLANTA, GA - AUGUST 15: Jachai Polite #56 of the New York Jets rests on the bench during the second half of an NFL preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on August 15, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
Todd Kirkland/Getty Images

The New York Jets will reportedly release linebacker Jachai Polite, a third-round pick in the 2019 NFL draft, according to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News.

The pick was made by then-general manager Mike Maccagnan, who was fired in May after leading the team during the draft and free agency. Joe Douglas took over the GM role in June and clearly felt differently about the edge-rusher.

The regime change could play a role in much of the roster construction:

Joe Caporoso @JCaporoso

Can't say I agree with giving up on Polite this fast unless there was other things going on behind the scenes but this very much is a "it is a new regime now" cut. Douglas taking a machete to what is left of Maccagnan's mid/late round picks #Jets

Still, this was a significant surprise considering how early Polite was picked. Per Rich Cimini of ESPN, it marked the first time the Jets cut a rookie drafted in the first three rounds before the season since 1986 (offensive tackle Doug Williams).

Polite had a lot of fans after a productive college career at Florida. He tallied 11 sacks in 2018 to go with 19.5 tackles for loss and an NCAA-best six forced fumbles.

Bleacher Report's Matt Miller listed him as the No. 8 edge-rusher in the class.

But he struggled throughout the preseason, even against opposing backups. Matt Stypulkoski of NJ Advance Media gave Polite an "F" on his rookie report card.

Another team could take a chance on the high-upside 21-year-old, but the Jets didn't see enough over the past four months to keep him.