Are the New York Jets interested in the former Raider?
According to ProFootballTalk, the New York Jets are interested in former Oakland Raider Darrius Heyward-Bey. As Erik Frenz stated it, DHB is an "older, smaller, faster Stephen Hill." Here is an article we wrote about DHB.
What could make him attractive to the Jets is the fact his best year came in 2011 when Sanjay Lal was Oakland's wide receivers coach. Lal currently holds the same position for the Jets. During that year, DHB put up a career year with 64 catches for 975 yards. According to Pro Football Focus, he was the eleventh most productive receiver in the league that year in terms of yards gained per pass route run.
Heyward-Bey has blazing speed. He is capable of making spectacular plays. His problem has consistency. His route running, tracking balls, and concentration have all been spotty during his career. Under Lal, he seemed to be putting it together. Once Lal left Oakland, DHB regressed. Even so, his 41 catch, 606 yard, 5 touchdown season probably would have made him the best receiver the Jets had
John's point about his best year coming with Lal is the most interesting, I think. It may be a coincidence, it may not be. It's worth checking out, though. If the Jets can sign him for a one-year "prove it" deal for only $2M, that may be worth signing DHB.
I'm not sure how well DHB would fit into Marty Mornhinweg's West Coast Offense, which is predicated on route running, but he may be able to find a role for him in creating more space underneath for Santonio Holmes and Jeremy Kerley to work with. If he were signed, I'd prefer him as the #3 or #4 receiver, battling with Stephen Hill for that spot.
What do you think?