It’s customary for the Jets to sign all of the players on their practice squad to a futures deal on the day after the season ends and we’d been hearing about some of these moves throughout the day. The team has now confirmed that they signed seven of the eight, along with a tight end, Colin Anderson:
We've signed 8 players to reserve/future contracts: TE Colin Anderson, DT T.J. Barnes, WR Michael Campbell, DT Tevita Finau …—
New York Jets (@nyjets) January 01, 2014
… C Dalton Freeman, LB Tim Fugger, WR Dwight Jones and S Rontez Miles.—
New York Jets (@nyjets) January 01, 2014
Anderson is a 6-4, 240 pounder that the Jets first worked out in October. He was undrafted out of Furman and caught two passes for the Vikings in preseason. The only member of the practice squad that is yet to sign is Ras-I Dowling. Whether that’s a temporary hold-up or a sign they’ve cooled on him remains to be seen.
In addition to Anderson, the Jets are also likely to sign some other players who were not “in the system” as the season came to an end. Some, but not necessarily all, of these will be guys who have been under contract with the Jets at some point over the last year or two. Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun reported some names to have recently worked out for the Jets:
Jets worked out Alex Albright, Jacoby Ashworth, Nate Eachus, Jerron McMillian, K.J. Stroud, Nick Taylor, Jeremy Wright, Jeremy Vujnovich—
Aaron Wilson (@RavensInsider) December 31, 2013
Some brief notes on these players after the jump.
- Alex Albright is a 6-5, 257 pound former Dallas Cowboys linebacker. He was on injured reserve this year, but did play a role last season, starting one game and recording 15 tackles in 185 defensive snaps. He also played sparingly in 2011 and has been extremely productive in kick coverage.
- Jacolby Ashworth is a 6-3, 300 pound offensive lineman who was an undrafted free agent that spent the offseason with Washington. He’s listed as a center but saw his only preseason action (18 snaps) at left guard.
- Nate Eachus – a 5-10, 212 pound fullback – was an undrafted free agent that caught on with the Chiefs in 2012. In preseason, he rushed for 98 and 99 yards in back to back games to earn a roster spot and started two games for the Chiefs in the regular season, rushing for 18 yards on five carries and catching a 19-yard pass before suffering a season ending head injury. He did not play this year.
- Jerron McMillian was a fourth round pick for the Packers in 2012. The 5-11, 203 pound safety saw significant playing time in a deep safety role off the bench in 2012 and during the early part of this season, but – after a solid 2012 campaign – he really struggled in 2013 and his playing time dried up. He was eventually cut in December when the Packers needed to create a roster spot for a running back.
- KJ Stroud is a familiar name, because the 6-3, 205-pound wide receiver was at camp with the Jets this offseason. Stroud was lost in the shuffle and played just five snaps in preseason.
- Nick Taylor is listed at just 5-10 and 165 pounds. He was in camp with the Vikings last year but tore his shoulder and missed the whole season. Taylor is a former FIU basketball player, so is likely a raw athlete. He is listed as a defensive back.
- Jeremy Wright is a 5-11, 205 pound running back who was an undrafted rookie last year. He spent time with the Giants and Steelers, for whom he played briefly in preseason, catching one five yard pass.
- Jeremy Vujnovich is a 6-5, 290 pound offensive tackle who went undrafted in 2013 but spent some time with the Packers during the offseason. He’s a pretty good athlete with a 4.89 forty time.
Of course, these mostly comprise guys that are likely to be camp fodder if they sign. However, you can sometimes find a contributor. For example, Jaiquawn Jarrett – who played 285 snaps on defense this year – signed a futures deal the day after last season ended.
We’ll eventually do a BGA scouting report on any of guys that actually sign for the team, provided they have any NFL preseason or regular season footage to review.