Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Source: Coples moves to OLB
By Rich Cimini
As far back as the scouting combine in February, Rex Ryan started dropping hints about Quinton Coples becoming more of an edge player. He'll be on the edge, all right. Coples, used mostly as an interior lineman as a rookie, will be moved to 3-4 outside linebacker, according to a league source.
Ryan uses multiple fronts, so it's quite possible Coples will be deployed as a down lineman in certain situations. But the plan, for now, is to stand him up. The former first-round pick was listed at 290 pounds last season, so he will have to drop weight to play linebacker, which requires some pass-coverage responsibilities.
This helps explain why the Jets were so hot for DT Sheldon Richardson, their second pick in the first round. Now there's an opening on the line for Richardson, who projects as a Day 1 starter.
Coples, the 16th overall pick in 2012, led the team with 5.5 sacks even though he played in only 47 percent of the defensive snaps.