What’s Going on with Bryce Huff?

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By: David Wyatt Hupton

Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images

Here are two stats that confuse me:

  1. Based on players who have a minimum of 100 pass-rush snaps, which is 129 edge players in the NFL. Bryce Huff ranks #1 with a 27.5% win rate and records a pressure ever 5.06 snaps.
  2. The Jets have given Bryce Huff just 10 pass-rush snaps over the last two games.

Earlier this season Bryce Huff was a player who received three healthy scratches in a row to start the season, before making his debut in week four. Since that day, he has become a nightmare for offensive tackles to deal with…when he’s been on the field.

He leads the Jets with that 27.5% win rate with John Franklin-Myers (18.8%) second and Carl Lawson third (16.8%). He also leads the Jets in terms of pass-rush productivity (11.8), a formula that combines sacks, hits, and hurries relative to how many times they rush the passer, again JFM is second (7.7) and Carl Lawson is third (6.9).

So if Bryce Huff statistically is the best Jets pass-rusher, why are the Jets not using him? JFM generates a pressure every 7.8 snaps and Carl Lawson generates one every 8.9. When the name of the game in the modern NFL is to protect your QB and disrupt the opposition QB, why are we not using such a big weapon?

The Jets finished with a top-10 defense in terms of pressure generated at 23.7%, so I don’t want to fire too much criticism their way, but had we utilized the personnel better…would it have been a top-5 or top-3 unit? Perhaps.

One very obvious reason may be his inability to play the run, meaning the Jets only wanted to use him in very obvious passing downs which limited the chance of him being exposed in the ground game. According to PFF, Bryce Huff only has 15 run defense snaps in a run defense role in thirteen games.

But lets call a spade a spade, Carl Lawson is not a very good run defender and PFF gave him a 49.3 run defense grade, the lowest of all the Jets edge players…yet he had 213 run defense snaps and an 18.2% missed tackle rate against the run.

The Jets had an embarrassment of riches this year at defensive end and Bryce Huff was the 3rd most used edge at rushing the passer, but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t underutilized, especially over the last few weeks in must-win scenarios…10 pass rush snaps over two games for your most productive pass-rusher isn’t going to make much sense to many people.

Huff is set to become a restricted free agent this off-season and the Jets will need to decide how to approach his tender, it wouldn’t surprise me to see a few teams try and pry him away from the Jets. The Jets will almost certainly extend a qualifying offer to him, the only question is whether they extend a second or first-round offer, giving them the right of first refusal.

Originally posted on Gang Green Nation – All Posts

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