Former Buffalo Bills Safety Jim Leonhard Can Be a Playmaker for New York Jets

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for NFLSportChannel.com

Published: July 9, 2009

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... he is set to have a breakout year with the new Jets defense.

He spent three seasons with the Bills as a reserve safety and special team’s guru before the Bills let him slip away after his contract expired. Baltimore signed him two months later to a one-year contract, after seeing how he filled in impressively in 2007 for expected starter at free safety this year for the Bills, Ko Simpson.

He started 13 games at safety for the Ravens and his playoff performance caught so much of then-Baltimore’s defensive coordinator Rex Ryan’s eye, that the now-Jets head coach brought him along, expanding his role in the Big Apple.

Much has been said of Leonhard’s leadership skills even before he sat in the locker room for more than 19 games with Ray Lewis, the man who redefined defensive leadership.

Aside from his defensive role, where he is expected to supplement Kerry Rhodes, Leonhard is going to be returning punts, utilizing his
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