Jets Sign LB Brandon Copeland

Posted Mar 19, 2018

Fourth-Year ‘Backer Missed 2017 Season with Pectoral Tear

The Jets have signed linebacker Brandon Copeland.

Copeland spent 2015-16 with the Lions, recording 30 tackles and one forced fumble in 32 games (one start). The fourth-year veteran missed the 2017 season with a pectoral tear that he suffered in the preseason.

“Too many different levels of excitement to put into words,” he said after inking his deal. “Coming off of injured reserve, having to sit every Sunday, Monday and Thursday and watching other people play, I’m first and foremost excited to get back to the game that I love.”

A Penn product, Copeland originally signed with the Ravens after the 2013 draft before joining the Titans’ practice squad. In 2015, the 6’3”, 263-pounder played with the Orlando Predators of the Arena Football League and later participated in the NFL Veterans Combine before signing with the Lions.

“I’m a guy that’s had a roller-coaster ride of a career, so part of that battle, for me, is being in a place where I feel like they value me,” said Copeland, who could have a prominent special teams role on the Jets. “From the jump, the Jets played no games letting me know and making sure I understood that.”

Copeland’s grandfather, Roy Hilton, played 11 seasons in the NFL and lined up with the Baltimore Colts against the Jets in Super Bowl III.

“He played defensive end against Joe Namath and all those guys," he said. "I know he’s going to be very proud of his grandson and now my job is to continue to make him proud."