One position of need that hasn't gotten too much attention is at ILB. The 31 year old Bart Scott is only getting older and slower. There has also been talk about the Jets possibly moving on from Scott. Even if Bart is part of the 2012 Jets, a replacement will be needed sooner rather than later. If the Jets do decide to bring in some new blood to our ILbing group, there are a number of guys that would fit right in. One guy that I have had my eye on this year, is Audie Cole. more after the jump...
Outside of Revis and Cromartie, there is a severe deficiency in guys who can cover. This goes double for our linebackers. Both Harris and Scott are very similar in what they are good at. Unfortunately, they are also similar in what they are bad at. An ILBer that can match up with the size and speed of TEs, or RBs, is someone the Jets could benefit from.
Audie Cole is just the guy to fill that void. Cole is a 3 year starter at N.C. State, and has led the team in tackles in 2 of those 3 years. He has very good instincts and is very fast to react to what's going on in front of him. Audie's fast reactions allow him to diagnose plays quickly, and puts himself in good positions to make plays. Cole is very rarely fooled on play fakes, or misdirection plays.
Cole is strongest when in coverage. He uses his size very well against TEs, and has the speed to stick with them. Audie is very good at jamming at the line, and throwing TEs off of their routs. When in a zone defense, Cole reads QBs eyes very well, and is often in good positions to make plays on passes. Against the run, Cole shows off his strength and tenacity. Audie isn't scared to battle it out with blockers, and does a decent job of disengaging. Going into his senior season, Cole's biggest concern was his ability to wrap up. Audie improved in this area a great deal in 2011, and was able to break the 100 tackle mark.
Tackles For A loss: 12.5
Passes Broken Up: 4
QB Hurries: 4
Forced Fumbles: 4