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2013 NFL Betting, Online NFL Betting Odds & Lines

The Brick’s retirement leaves New York Jets scrambling

Posted by Betonline team on 4/11/2016 2:37:20 PM

The stunning retirement of New York Jets left tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson has the team scrambling and making new plans before the NFL Draft.

Ferguson played 10 years and just missed one snap during a 160-game career. He was moved by the movie Concussion and left days after being asked to take a play cut so the team could free cap space. Now there is one more headache for General Manager Mike Maccagnan. Does he draft an edge rusher with the 20th pick in the draft or does he switch and obtain a left tackle?

There are a number of quality defensive linemen. Some scouts believe teams can get second-round value as late as the fourth round. That could steer the Jets to take an offensive lineman early. However, Laremy Tunsil of Mississippi, Ronnie Stanley (Notre Dame), Jack Conklin (Michigan State) and Taylor Decker (Ohio State) are likely going to be gone, which could force the Jets to trade up. Or the team could wait until the second round and snag Le’Raven Clark of Texas Tech or Jason Spriggs (Indiana).

One option is to trade for Broncos Ryan Clady or wait to see if the team releases him this summer.

The Jets have just six draft picks so trading up will be difficult. But they would not have to trade up far. Detroit with the 16th pick and Indianapolis with No. 18 are both interested in offensive linemen. There are rumors that the Lions could help the Jets by going with a wide receiver.

The team also will receive $9 million in cap space but most of the good free agent linemen have already been picked over. The guess here is the Jets wish they’d known about Ferguson leaving before veteran Russell Okung signed with the Denver Broncos. He could have been a stop gap for a season or two.

Brick is a tough person to replace. He played 10,351 snaps out of a possible 10,352. The only play he missed came in 2008 when former coach Eric Mangini took all the offensive linemen off the field except Nick Mangold. It is an amazing feat. Some coaches like to say that the NFL has a 100 percent injury rate. It is true for the most part.

Ferguson made the Pro Bowl three times, paved the way for the Jets running game and kept the blind side free for the quarterbacks during his career. He was not the sexy pick during the 2006 draft but he has been steady and dependable.

However, all players decline in skills and Ferguson’s $14.1 million cap hit was too much for the Jets to carry. They had just $500,000 in available money and the team needed more cash to sign free agent quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and make other moves.

The Brick was always tough, steady and unmovable. Now he is gone and the Jets are left scrambling trying to replace him.

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