By Ryan Alfieri, Editor
Now that the 2013 Jets season has concluded, it is time to take a look at potential roster holes that could open up with departing free agents. Here, we break down Mike DeVito and determine whether or not he is worth retaining in the offseason.
This is where DeVito is at his best. Rated as the second-best run-stuffer on the team by PFF, DeVito uses his brute strength to “bench press” guards. He gets off blocks well and is a sure tackler. Because he slimmed down in the offseason, he can also split double teams and make plays in the backfield.
DeVito is not known for his pass-rushing ability as a stereotypical 5-technique, but he clearly improved in this area. He lost weight in the offseason and was clearly a step faster off the ball and got better with his hand movement. Still, any team that signs DeVito knows that they are not getting the next Bruce Smith.
Intangibles: DeVito emerged as a veteran voice of the team, appearing several times in press conferences and on radio shows on behalf of the team. He is considered a pleasure to talk to by the media. A former UDFA, DeVito is a terrific for young players of how hard work and dedication can help you succeed in the NFL.
Market Value: In 2012, Saints Brodrick Bunkely signed a 5-year, $25 million deal with the Saints, and DeVito should get something in that ballpark. There is a chance that he can take a hometown discount because he has family in the New York area and grew up a Jets fan.
Role in 2013: After drafting Quinton Coples last year, it would be easy to assume that DeVito is on his way out, but Coples is still rough around the edges against the run and the Jets value defensive line depth after the amount of injuries they had last year. If retained, DeVito will be a starter on run downs and be used in more of a rotational role as Coples continues to develop.
Conclusion: The Jets tight cap situation will make it hard for the Jets to splurge on defensive end depth, but they need to start retaining some of the leaders that brought them to two AFC Championship games. Plus, there is a good chance that he could go back home to New England or follow Mike Pettine to Buffalo if they allow him to retain. The Jets should retain him for fair market value, but if a team like the Bills drive up the price, it simply does not make sense for the Jets to spend precious cap money on a somewhat one-dimensional player.