When Kevin Pierre-Louis signed with the Jets in March, it wasn't because of a pre-draft visit he took at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center and it wasn't because he's a Connecticut native. Among other reasons, Pierre-Louis primarily joined the Green & White because of assistant head coach/inside linebackers coach Mike Caldwell.
"He seemed like a person that I could connect with and his door is open," Pierre-Louis said. "Sometimes you might run into individuals where, depending on who you are, that door might be a little shut. His door is open. He's a great person to learn from because you can communicate and bounce ideas back and forth. That's the biggest thing because if I bring something up to him, there might be a chance that I'm wrong. However, he'll listen and try to take in what I have to say."
The fifth-year veteran joined the Jets after one season with the Chiefs (2017) and three with the Seahawks, the team that selected him in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Pierre-Louis, a Boston College product, could have an opportunity to play a key role in sub packages as both Julian Stanford and Bruce Carter are no longer with the team. Darron Lee will start on the inside next to another newcomer in former Titans ILB Avery Williamson.
"I'm just ready to play whenever my number is called," Pierre-Louis said. "You never know what's going to happen. I'm here to compete. I definitely didn't come here thinking I'm going to fill a certain role. My mindset is to compete and play when I can to earn a spot. You never know what's going to happen. I have to show them that I'm capable of being a consistent contributor and I'm going to continue that."
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The 6'0", 230-pounder said he brings speed and energy to a room that already has a lot of competition. Pierre-Louis likes being a part of a competitive environment because it keeps everyone "honest."
"It's just a great thing when different rotations come in and there's not any fall off," he said. "That's what the team needs as well, knowing that when this next group comes in, whether it's safeties or linemen, these linebackers got our back, so we're set."
In addition to Pierre-Louis and Williamson, the Green & White stayed active in the middle this spring with the signings of Kevin Minter and Neville Hewitt. After working together in OTAs and minicamp, the 26-year-old Pierre-Louis likes the potential of the Jets' inside backers.
"The calls are there," he said. "If we execute, we're literally going to be there. It's a defense that (coordinator Kacy Rodgers) keeps putting us in position to make plays. We're not trying to set things up, we're trying to make plays and that's a big difference when you're playing defense."