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Jets sign 17 UDFA Rookies

The first five of the Jets’ seven draft picks last week focused on the offensive side of the ball. Fortunately, they were able to add a number of defensive rookies who fell out of the draft as undrafted free agents. Here are the 17 players heading to New York as UDFAs:

  • Shemar BartholomewCB (South Georgia)
  • AlBlades Jr.S (duke)
  • Jimmy CiarloLB (Army)
  • Tyler HarrellWR (Miami)
  • Peewee JarrettQB (West Florida)
  • Tre JenkinsLB (San Jose State)
  • Tyreek JohnsonDE (South Carolina)
  • Myles JonesCB (duke)
  • Brady LathamG (Arkansas)
  • Braids McGregorDE (Michigan)
  • Jarius MonroeS (Tulane)
  • Marcus RileyWR (Florida A&M)
  • Lincoln SefcikTE (South Alabama)
  • Jackson SirmonLB (California)
  • Leonard Taylor,DT (Miami)
  • Willie TylerT (Louisville)
  • Erik WattsDT (Connecticut)

A four-year starter for the Razorbacks, Latham spent almost all of his time at left guard at the collegiate level. His father was an All-Conference center for Oklahoma in the 1980s, and some NFL teams thought Latham had the potential to follow his father’s footsteps as a center at the next level.

Many saw McGregor as a draft-and-develop prospect who could go on Day 3 of the draft, but instead the 22-year-old is leaving Ann Arbor as an undrafted free agent. He is long, fast and explosive, but will need coaching to convert those traits into starting potential.

Taylor dropping out of the draft altogether was one of the most surprising outcomes of last weekend. A former five-star recruit for the Hurricanes, Taylor recorded five sacks and 20.0 tackles for loss in his first two seasons. A disappointing junior year left teams wondering if the lack of production stemmed from discipline on the field or perhaps an inability to buy in. Still, the raw talent at Taylor’s disposal was considered to at least warrant an early Day 3 selection. Instead, he falls to the Jets, where he was able to find varied playing time behind two excellent role models Javon Kinlaw And Quinnen Williams.

Taylor will be joined in New York by two former teammates who spent time in the transfer portal. Harrell spent just one year in Coral Gables after transferring from Alabama, where he also spent just one season. A burner with track experience, Harrell showed the most potential during his senior year at Louisville in 2021, when he averaged 29.1 yards per catch and caught six touchdowns. Blades spent his senior year at Duke but played his first four seasons with Miami. He had two strong seasons for the Hurricanes in 2019 and 2020, picking up four interceptions and thirteen passes defended, but the next two years were quiet until he transferred to Durham, where he led the Blue Devils in passes defensed with ten in 2023 .