It is tough to believe today, but there was actually a time when the Jets gave a young player a big new contract that made sense. That time was when the Jets signed David Harris to a long term deal last summer. The now 28 year old had emerged as perhaps the most underrated linebacker in the league. He does one thing exceptionally well. He is a monster against the run.
I thought Harris had a bit of a down year in 2011. His 86 tackles constituted his lowest total since 2008. Moreover, he got lost too frequently, overpursuing plays and leaving the gap he was supposed to fill open for backs to cut there. There were more long runs that were his responsibility than in recent memory, and the Jets had a down year defending the run largely because of it.
With all of this said, there really is not much debate on this one. Harris has shown he can be one of the most effective linebackers in the league and should be entering his prime. I look for him to bounce back in 2012. He is staying.