This is a continuing ice-water take on options for the Jets this off-season. You can catch part 1 of my take on the Jets off-season maneuvering options right here.
By now there should be cascading tweets regarding the legal tampering period pouring into your timelines. Probably not. Still, it’s an exciting day for the NFL as old faces go to new places and C level players somehow manage to secure A- level money CC: Josh Norman
The last time we checked in on the New York Jets, they were just rubbing the sleep out of their eyes as they awoke for the off-season. Think of the day ahead of them like a busy Sunday that preps them for the upcoming week. Sunday Scaries’ are no joke either–a day of misery and sorrow that precedes a full work week. There is only so much time to get over your agony and be productive. Hence why I’m slamming away about the Jets–a team also quite familiar with perpetual agony that they MUST get over if they are going to be productive in the coming period.
The Jets jumped out of bed at the crack of dawn and began swinging away at the nasty shrubbery around the house with a scythe. There’s so much landscaping to do before you start building the property again. Plenty of once majestic and worthwhile pieces of the property that have since fallen out of favor and are scheduled for mulch.
That bush called Revis that was once on an island but now is overgrown and overstayed its welcome? Gone.
That tall Marshall tree just casts shade everywhere and requires a ton of diva-level maintenance? Chopped down.
Sadly, there was a great statue of Buddha that stood majestically in the middle of the property for many years but has since decayed from time in the elements. Sometimes the work is hamstrung by sentimentality, but unfortunately sometimes you need to move on from beloved items. Mangold the Steady will be missed.
Thats three out of five pre-planned removals. As Mike Maccagnan wipes the sweat off his brow and admires his early work, his eyes quickly scan to a valuable yet out-of-place piece he has near the front. That hefty eyesore needs to be moved, it’s simply a question of whether some poor bastard is going to trade for it–pennies on the dollar likely–or Maccagnan is going to drop it off at the dump and let this trash becomes someone else’s treasure.
Has Maccagnan also settled his cross-hairs over Eric Decker? More than likely. The Jets have done away with almost every rich-veteran deal on their roster that is free of major guaranteed money. Decker falls right into that demographic–his dismissal could ave the Jets $5M and his dead money hit is only $3M this year. The Jets have dismantled the core of their team over the last two seasons already and have gone into tank mode.
While they’ve tipped their hand and this move would be in line with their current thinking, I think cutting or retaining Decker is of no consequence either way when you consider the dearth of total talent on the team. On one hand, they can roll the extra cap over into next season and possibly set themselves up to be much improved sooner. On the other hand, having a veteran receiver that’s a positive influence in the locker room and a safety valve for the predestined young quarterback the Jets will select has it benefits as well. There might not be a tangible way to measure it, but Reggie Wayne’s veteran presence for a younger Andrew Luck was undoubtedly beneficial for the QB’s development.
Speaking of young quarterbacks, not a single one of these young bloods setting up under center in this draft impresses me. I’m not exactly qualified for amateur quarterback analysis, but without a glowing review of any quarterback to reference who feels good about taking these quarterbacks? When you consider the historical depth of the defensive line, tight end and running backs groups AND the quality of blue-chip prospects at defensive back, how can you realistically waste a 1st round pick on any one of these project quarterbacks when the Jets have an opportunity to add a disruptive force on the defensive front or plug-in a Jamal Adams or Malik Hooker to sure up a leaky and unreliable secondary.
That doesn’t exactly answer the quarterback conundrum for the Jets, who have done themselves no favors in terms of adding clarity. Over the past five seasons, they’ve turned to Mark Sanchez and Geno Smith, added David Garrard via free agency, drafted Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg and traded for Ryan Fitzpatrick and TIM TEBOW. It’s been a crowded quarterback room totally devoid of any talent. Once again, the Jets need to light that room on fire and start completely fresh. Just walk away as it burns to the ground.
If I am a Jets fan, I fixate on whichever trait you hate the most about the quarterbacks available in the draft this year. Obsess over Kizer’s collegiate record, Trubisky’s lack of experience or impromptu desire to be called Mitchell, Mahomes’ quarterback mentor being Cliff Kingsbury and whatever it is you decide is wrong with Watson. None of these guys are the answer. NONE.
Then, you fall in love with Sam Darnold or Josh Rosen. As of right now, those two look to be the answers to whichever quarterback problem a franchise could be having. You want to be impressed with Rosen? Check out this cut up of his game this past season against A&M, getting bullied the entire game by Myles Garrett but still leading his team back to tie the game late.
Sam Darnold became a media darling when he burned down the Coliseum in the Rose Bowl. I don’t know if there is an emulator for the daily beating the NY media gives you as a quarterback in their town, and I don’t know if lighting it up on hallowed ground on one of college football’s biggest stages translates, but it shows something.
The Jets’ projection for this season has them in that Cleveland-esque (who are we kidding, the number pick should just be called Cleveland) position of pick of the litter. So for all you apart of Gang Green faithful, fix your eyes towards one of these two quarterbacks and fall for them. That is your answer. It is not Bryce Petty, and it certainly not Christian Hackenberg, you know this guy:
For Jet fans, get used to the smell of the inside of a dumpster. This team is slated to be BAD this year. Maccagnan’s statements regarding his team’s draft pick’s availability this year indicates he might be taking the Sashi Brown approach. For a team that looks to be utterly non-competitive, it would bode well for the rebuild to acquire as much future draft capital as possible. That has set the Browns up nicely in this years draft, but the flip side of this coin was a 1-15 2016 campaign. Maybe the Jets don’t sink that low, but you can believe this 4-12 roster is not getting better this season.