Here we are one week before the draft, and I'm wondering what is the state of the depth chart? I could definately go over to NFL.com or any other website and just click on roster or depth chart but I don't want to do that. My question is, who is starting, and what positions are up for grabs right now? A lot of us have a tendancy (myself included) to say, if the Jets draft Player X, he will be a starter at that position. 99% of the time, that's not the way it works. There is still a depth chart, and players to beat out to get a starting spot on any roster.
What spots are open, and who will win them? Maybe we can address this in another 2 weeks to see what has changed since rookie selections.Wide receiver:
Burress is gone, and who's going to start opposite Holmes? You could make a case for any of the 3. Kerley looked pretty good last year. Chaz Schillens was brought in as a free agent and has height, speed, and he was pretty good in the red zone for the Raiders last year. Patrick Turner is a big target, and he's got a history with Sanchez all the way back to USC.
Current winner: If the season started tomorrow I'd give the nod to Chaz Schillens. They brought him in, and I think the job is his to lose. If they draft someone early, it will probably be the rookies job to lose, but I wouldn't be surprised if Schillens is the week 1 starter with everyone else having to work up the depth chart.
Bryan Thomas, Calvin Pace, Aaron Maybin, and Jamal Westerman all split time at starting OLB. After Thomas got hurt it was pretty much Westerman, with Maybin playing spot duty. Now Westerman is gone and BT is coming off of an injury. Maybin is still a situational guy, and Thomas might not be back to 100%. Maybe he starts, but maybe he is depth in the linebacking corps.
Current Winner: Bryan Thomas comes back again as starter as of today, 1 week before the draft. Maybin will continue to be a situational guy, unless he miraculously bulked up over the off season (doubt it). I'd say in 2 weeks we'll be saying that the job is open for competition between BT and whatever rookie the Jets grab in the first 2 rounds. I'd say it's still a good chance that BT wins out, based on experience, track record, and they bring a rookie along throughout the season.
Wayne is back this year, and Ducasse is the only competition. Right now Hunter is clearly better than Ducasse, but who knows what Ducasse's learning curve will be. I've heard when he was drafted he couldn't really speak English, but only understand it. Maybe that stunted his growth into the tackle position. There's no real free agent pickups and no stud rookie right now. Austin Howard is also in the mix, but he's a big question mark.
Current Winner: Wayne Hunter this week. Wayne Hunter after the draft as well. I do think they might scour the waiver wire and pick up a veteran tackle that could take the job from Hunter as the cut down weeks happen. Wayne, it's still your job to lose buddy. hope you made some strides in what seems like your 10th season of pro football.
The strong safety spot is locked down by Leron Landry. You don't give $4 million to someone to be a backup. The free safety spot currently boasts Eric Smith and....Maybe Jim Leonhard comes back but who knows. he's 30, he's 5'8, and he's got 2 big knee injuries. Eric Smith wins by default because there's no real competition on the roster as of yet other than camp bodies and practice squad players. If Leonhard is re-signed that adds another piece to the puzzle.
Current Winner: Eric Smith by default. If Jimmy gets a 1 year deal, he will be the starter. For the past 3 Rex Ryan seasons the Jets have carried 4 safeties, with as many as 3 playing at a time. I think it's a safe bet that a free safety ballhawk type player is either drafted or signed during cut downs. If the player is during the draft if its anyone other than Mark Barron, he will have to work up the depth chart and won't be a week 1 starter. That includes Illoka and Harrison Smith in my opinion.
Is there even a contreversy here. This team likes Shonn Greene and has never said otherwise. We are the only ones I've ever heard that have said the Jets need a new back. Never heard it from the front office, or the coaching staff. There are currently 3 backs in Greene, Mcknight, and Powell.
Current Winner: The job is Shonn Greene's hands down. The backs are all in place currently in Greene, Mcknight, and Powell. Remember that Bilal Powell was a 4th round pick a year ago, and teams generally don't give up on them after a season and maybe a dozen carries in the NFL. They might go with 4 backs again, and Robert Turbins name has been floated around alot. Problem is he is a 4th round kind of back, and the Jets have no 4th round pick. He might get drafted in the 3rd or traded up for in the 4th.
Last but not least Quarterback
The job is Mark Sanchez's. He is the starter. Tim Tebow is just here for certain option packages and trickery. Then there's the chatter that people will clamor for Tebow the second Sanchez throws a pick. To that I say how many people on this site have said that. Are we not all Jets fans? How many of us would clamor for Tebow if Sanchez has a bad game? I don't think I would, and I don't think any of you would either. I see us being the standard as Jets fans, and any fans casual or hard core would not root for Tebow over Sanchez. Critics are wrong. Just don't see it happening.
Current Winner: No debate. Sanchez will be the starter all 16 games of the regular season, and all 3 or 4 games of the playoffs. Tim Tebow is not in the same league as Sanchez passing wise and this is a QB league. I think that free of Schottenheimer, and with a strong running, play action attack that caters to Sanchez's strengths, he will be the QB until 2020 at least.
That's the way i see the current depth chart. Maybe Hayden Smith overtakes Jeff Cumberland in the 2 tight end sets and we get a new punter. Other than that get used to the same old faces, with a newer, and better offense that routinely stays on the field almost 40 minutes of a 60 minute game.