Following seven productive seasons with the New York Jets, nose tackle Sione Pou’ha is expected to be released by the same team that drafted him back in the third round of the 2008 NFL draft.
An often unheralded and unsung member of the Jets’ defensive line, the 325 pound run-stuffer quietly became one of the league’s toughest and most hard-nosed defenders.
Battling back issues since the onset of last year’s training camp; Pou’ha missed four games last season despite playing through multiple injuries. New York’s man in the middle began to show the wear and tear on is body as the physical pounding he endured started to take its toll on the 34-year-old.
Po’uha took over the starting nose tackle job when former Pro-Bowler Kris Jenkins went down with a season-ending knee injury in consecutive seasons during 2009 and 2010 campaigns. With Po’uha’s Jets’ career coming to a close, Gang Green will turn to third-year lineman Kenrick Ellis to fill the gap left by No. 91’s departure.
As general manager John Idzik ushers in wholesale personnel changes, Pou’ha becomes the latest cap casualty for the cash-strapped Jets.