Getty Former Cleveland Browns defensive lineman Perrion Winfrey reacts in the middle of an NFL game.
The New York Jets have added even more Brutus Beefcake to their defensive line rotation.
Gang Green gave up
In a corresponding move, the Green-Whites parted ways with defensive lineman Bruce Hector.
Hector was with the Jets over the summer and began his career with the Eagles after signing as an undrafted free agent.
Jets bring a talented piece of clay to work with
The Jets lacked interior depth on the defensive line after losing veteran Al Woods to a torn Achilles tendon this season.
Winfrey is only 23 years old and is bursting with talent and potential.
However, some off-field issues derailed his career with the Browns and he was ultimately released in July.
I asked Jim Nagy, executive director of the Reese’s Senior Bowl, what he thought of Winfrey participating in college football’s annual All-Star event in 2022.
“Super disturbing. The combination of length and twitch was difficult to manage on 3-Tech. Was a completely different rating than receiving him at Oklahoma, where he was used as a 0 NT. Also one of the most competitive guys we’ve had in the last five years. He telegraphed on game day. Talent is not the problem. I hope it works with NYJ,” Nagy previously explained to X on Twitter.
Super disturbing. The combination of length and twitch was difficult to manage on 3-Tech. Was a completely different rating than receiving him at Oklahoma, where he was used as a 0 NT. Also one of the most competitive guys we’ve had in the last five years. He telegraphed on game day. Talent is not the problem. Hope…
— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) November 8, 2023
In 13 games with the Browns during his rookie season, Winfrey recorded half a sack, two pass deflections and finished the game with 22 total tackles.
Saleh breaks his silence on the signing and shares expectations for Winfrey
Saleh was asked about Winfrey’s signing during his media release on Wednesday, November 8.
“We had him at the Senior Bowl, we absolutely loved him at the Senior Bowl. We thought about drawing him and ended up taking him [Jeremy] “Ruckert, that was good, Ruckert is great,” Saleh revealed.
“Perrion is not a bad person. Sometimes players make stupid mistakes. Sometimes they are not good in life to start their football career, but that is not because he is a bad person. I just make stupid, immature decisions. Much of what was accused of him was wiped away when it was realized that it was all lies. As far as man goes, he’s a good man, he just needs to figure out how to make better decisions.”
#Jets HC Robert Saleh was asked about the decision to sign DL Perrion Winfrey (@pdontplay):
They said they “absolutely loved” him at the @seniorbowl. + They considered drafting, but they chose TE Jeremy Ruckert instead. + “Perrion isn’t a bad person sometimes… pic.twitter.com/tHsTX5Eo45.”
— Paul Andrew Esden Jr (@BoyGreen25) November 8, 2023
Saleh argued that Winfrey “will find the right path” with the talent and depth of the Jets D-line group.
One of the things the Jets coaching staff really values when evaluating players is love of the game.
“Perrion is a tremendous talent, but he is also someone who loves the game of football. I think he realized he could lose the ball. He can lose what he loves if he doesn’t take care of the things he needs to take care of off the field. [Winfrey] has a love for football and I think he realized he needs to protect it a bit better. We’re going to give him the opportunity to show that he wants to protect it, while at the same time growing in a group that I think can get the best out of him and into the type of player he can be.”
Paul A. Esden Jr. covers the New York Jets for Heavy.com. The New York native is also the official PA voice of the Syracuse Strong Football Club and co-host of Cumulus Media’s morning show “The Manchild Show with Boy Green.” Prior to joining Heavy in 2021, Esden Jr. covered both national and New York sports for FanSided, Elite Sports NY and The Score 1260. More about Paul A. Esden Jr.