Our series grading each position group on the Jets in 2015 goes on. Today we address the linebackers. As a refresher, here is the John B Grading System.
A - An enormous success by any definition
B - Happy with the production
C - Not terribly thrilled; not terribly upset
D - A disappointment
F - A total catastrophe
2015 in review
Linebacker was a tale of two players in 2015 for the Jets.
David Harris had a comeback season. With a new contract in his hands, Harris put together his best campaign in five years. He led the Jets with 108 tackles, 18 of which resulted in either no gain or a loss for the offense on a run play. After underperforming for most of his second contract with the team, Harris got off to a great start on his third contract.
On the other end of the spectrum was Demario Davis. In a contract year, he had a chance to become an integral part of the defense. He struggled, though. He lost playing time as the season progressed. Davis almost never came off the field during the first nine weeks, but by the time Week 17 rolled along, he only got 16 snaps. Demario was never a strong cover linebacker. When he was drafted, there was hope he could be developed into one because of his speed. It never happened. Teams this season had a lot of success isolating running backs on routes against him.
Erin Henderson started getting some of Davis' snaps and played reasonably well. Jamari Lattimore also got a handful of snaps, particularly on passing downs.
Looking to 2016
Harris is under contract, but Davis, Henderson, and Lattimore are all free agents. The smart money seems to be on Davis leaving and the Jets bringing back Henderson. This makes sense. Henderson will undoubtedly come cheaply. Working as a backup last season helped get his career back on the right track. Now he might get a chance in a starting role.
Harris was excellent. Davis eventually lost playing time, which allows us to rise above C territory.