DE Jerry Hughes
I already know what’s going to happen. People are going to sleep on Jerry Hughes, the season will start and then he will pull some kind of Lorenzo Alexander, 10+ sack season and make it difficult for any quarterback to find some time.
Remember the Jerry Hughes we saw in 2013 and 2014? Those were both 4-3 defenses (Mike Pettine and Jim Schwartz). In fact, Schwartz’ defense finished 4th in the NFL and also finished top-5 in most defensive categories — simply put, they were dominant.
We could see a return to those days on defense in 2017.
Over that two-year span, Hughes combined for 99 tackles, 19.5 sacks, 5 forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and 8 stuffs.
You put this guy on the line and give him the goal of using his speed to get around the corner and get to the quarterback, you’ll see results every time. Rex Ryan simply didn’t know how to utilize Jerry Hughes and I am confident that Sean McDermott and Leslie Frazier will figure it out this season.
Let’s not forget, before Jerry Hughes quieted down last season, he quickly found himself in the MVP race about four games into the season. It was a list that put Jerry Hughes as a ‘special mention’ when talking about the early MVP race. He was the only Buffalo Bills’ player on that list.
I believe we’ll see more of that, as well as a little more consistency this season.