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AFC EAST
Text by Don Banks
February 11, 2013
PROBLEM STAT
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February 11, 2013

Afc East

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PROBLEM STAT

57 Total sacks, hits and hurries—fourth most in the league—yielded by rookie tackle Jonathan Martin, who played 12 games on the right side, then moved to the left after Jake Long went on IR in Week 12.

SOLUTION

Pay Long, who'll be one of the NFL's most-sought-after unrestricted free agents. The four-time Pro Bowler has given up almost as many sacks in his last two seasons (12½) as he did in his first three (13½), but so what? During that time he has been battling shoulder and arm injuries, and he still ranks among the best at his pivotal position. That will allow Martin to move back to the less demanding right side.

AND THEN?

Reunite coach Joe Philbin with Packers free-agent WR Greg Jennings, a playmaker whom Philbin already trusts.... Save that No. 12 draft pick for a defensive playmaker to replace free-agent tackle Randy Starks—someone like Missouri DT Sheldon Richardson.... Resist the temptation to overpay to keep free-agent RB Reggie Bush; Shonn Green and Stephen Jackson may be available for less money.

PROBLEM STAT

18.4% Catchable passes that WR T.J. Graham dropped. Only the Cardinals' Early Doucet had a higher drop percentage among players targeted at least 25% of the time.

SOLUTION

Look for depth beyond Steve Johnson (whose 79 catches were nearly twice that of any Bills WR) in the draft or free agency. And replace Ryan Fitzpatrick, the deliverer of those balls, with a free-agent vet while drafting a long-term replacement in latter rounds.

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