FanPost

Rolling the Dice


Congratulations to Wyatt, Crackback, Klecko and other people whom I'm sorry I'm not familiar enough to cite yet. You guys really pegged it. You really know players, you really know football and you really know the Jets. Like a lot of people, I feel a lot more knowledgeable since I found this site.

On the other hand, I was dead wrong. Would the jets put a priority on offense? No. Would the Jets look to upgrade the offensive line? No. Specifically, would the Jets try to replace RT? No.

On a tactical level, I loved the Jets draft. They wanted to address the pass rush. At 16, they got arguably the best pure pass rusher in the draft. They also got a guy in the 3rd round who not only has pass rush potential, but who is fast enough to maybe cover a tight end, and shoot gaps and deliver tremendous hits. I'm not too worried about where they'll play in the various schemes, Ryan is one of the best in the business in figuring this out. On offense, they finally got a guy who can go deep and make safeties think twice before moving forward in run support or underneath routes. Hill can also block on the edge, an important element in the Jets offense. I like all three players.

On a strategic level, though, I still worry about the team. The Jets are gamblers. Their gambling in the draft manifested itself this year not so much in their trademark trade ups, but in the value placed on potential vs. production. Their top three picks all have very impressive measurables, but none of them showed solid production against quality opponents. I'm not buying the whole BPA thing either, they targeted specific functions and specific players, and they got 'em.

The Jets gamble on character. Their notable free agent signings have been a lineup of talented, but notorious screwups who other teams have gladly gotten rid of. Their most important signing this year has not only character issues, just look at him with his shirt off, but is a major injury risk as well. in Coples, the Jets got a guy who would have never fallen as fas as 16 without universal reports of a lack of effort, and who knows how much farther he would have fallen had the Jets not taken him. Their best player on defense is squabbling about his contract two years after his last holdout, and their most vocal Ryan advocate is seemingly being shown the door. On offense, the most important position on the field is a source of controversy instead of leadership, and one of the highest paid players quits on the team. The lack of leadership on the field puts an enormous level of pressure on the coaching staff to generate the level of consistent peak effort required of a winning NFL team.

Finally, the Jets gamble on their style of play. The Jets are betting that they can produce a defense dominant enough to carry a mediocre offense. 4 of the last 5 no. 1 picks have been on defense. The Jets haven't drafted a premiere offensive player since 2006. The Jets rank 5 in defense and 25th in offense and they draft defense. The Jets stockpile a deep defensive line, but neglect a depleted offensive line.

Popular culture is transfixed by high profile gamblers, and NFL fans love great defenses. But they like winning more. The Jets were 8-8 last year, and almost any objective analyst would say they have have had no better than the third best offseason in their Division. The Jets like their draft, but so do a whole lot of other teams, most notably the Patriots. The Patriots have been so good for so long, and they aren't going away anytime soon. Maybe to try and beat them. you need to gamble. So let's drink to the notion that all this talent on defense can play to their potential and stifle the Patriots vaunted offense. 7 come 11, Daddy needs a new pair of shoes.

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