The mega-deal the Jets gave cornerback Darrelle Revis in free agency two offseasons ago proved to be an ill-fated decision, but it doesn’t look as if it’s going to deter them from trying to upgrade the position via the open market this year. With Revis out of the picture, there’s talk at the scouting combine that the corner-needy Jets will pursue the Texans’ A.J. Bouye if he reaches free agency, according to Brian Costello of the New York Post.
The 25-year-old Bouye is arguably the best soon-to-be available corner in a class that could also feature the Patriots’ Logan Ryan and the Bills’ Stephon Gilmore, among others. As such, Bouye figures to rake in elite money – perhaps something along the lines of the five-year, $62.5MM deal with $29MM in guarantees the Giants gave then-free agent Janoris Jenkins last offseason.
While Bouye only has 19 NFL starts on his resume, one personnel department executive told Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle last week that the four-year veteran is “going to get paid a lot of money” because “everybody in the league knows how good he is.” Bouye made his case for a massive payday in ranking third among Pro Football Focus’ 112 qualified corners in overall performance last year.
Unlike Bouye, the Jets hardly thrived in 2016. Their pass defense was part of the reason for their 5-11 finish, as it ranked second to last in the NFL in DVOA and allowed 30 touchdowns against just eight interceptions. Thus, the team could attempt to reel in Bouye, who’s familiar with its general manager, Mike Maccagnan. Before taking over the Jets’ football department two years ago, Maccagnan worked in the Texans’ front office from 2010-14. He was Houston’s assistant director of college scouting when it signed Bouye as an undrafted free agent in in 2013.
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