The Jets stood pat on the trade front ahead of today’s deadline, but the team has nevertheless made an addition. New York has signed veteran offensive lineman Rodger Saffold to the practice squad with plans to quickly elevate him to the active roster, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports.
Saffold will provide a wealth of experience at the guard spot for the Jets. The 35-year-old has 176 games and 173 starts to his name, including a nine-year stint with the Rams. That was followed by three seasons with the Titans, a stretch which ended with his release with one year remaining on his $44MM pact. He last played with the Bills in 2022. This move will reunite him with offensive line coach Keith Carter who worked with Saffold in Tennessee.
The Jets have suffered a number of injuries on offense, and the team’s O-line has been shorthanded as a result. Former first-rounder Alijah Vera-Tucker – who had been given serious consideration for a full-time right tackle spot but has primarily played at both left and right guard – is out for the year due to an Achilles tear. Connor McGovern and Wes Schweitzer have both also landed on IR. Saffold will have the chance to fill in along the interior, though he has also seen time at left tackle during his career.
Suiting up for 16 games in Buffalo last season, Saffold earned a second straight Pro Bowl nod in 2022 despite a precipitous drop in his PFF evaluations. He earned a career-high mark of 80.7 in 2017, but has taken a step back in that department every year since. At a minimum, Saffold will be able to work as a depth option at a number of spots as the 4-3 Jets look to continue their recent success with Zach Wilson at the helm on offense.
New York entered the day with just under $8MM in cap space. Rather than using that figure on trading for O-line help, Saffold will fit the bill on what will no doubt be a low-cost addition. It will be interesting to see how quickly the Jets use him on gamedays and in what capacity.