Hiya folks. Today we’re going to try to get a semi-regular GGN mailbag started again. Feel free to e-mail us with questions regarding players, the team as a whole, or GGN as a website. Whatever you want. I’m going to slightly edit the questions for readability, so please don’t be offended if it’s not worded identical to how you sent it in or if the grammar is changed.
All of that said, I have polled some of our editors and writers for their answers to your questions, and put their initials next to each of their responses. Join us below the jump to check out the mailbag.
Edit - I have added GangGreenMag's responses in as well.
Who will lead the team in sacks this season?
BDTSL - I believe that Aaron Maybin will lead the team in sacks. I suspect that with Sione Pouha, Kenrick Ellis, Muhammad Wilkerson, and Quinton Coples engaging the offensive line, there will be a lot of mismatches and blown matchups that allow Maybin to wreak havoc with his speed. There are going to be a lot of double teams on the defensive line, leaving someone open… in this case, Mayhem Maybin.
JB - I'll go with Quinton Coples. It's probably going to be a front seven guy. Bart Scott and David Harris don't rush the passer much. Aaron Maybin and Demario Davis will be situational pass rushers. Sione Pouha, Mike Devito, and Bryan Thomas aren't very productive rushing the passer. Calvin Pace is in decline. That leaves Coples and Muhammad Wilkerson. I think Coples has more natural ability for Karl Dunbar to nurture.
GGM - I think it will be Maybin. The guy has beefed up, and hasn't lost any speed. Maybin has been a terror in training camp so far, and doesn't show any signs of slowing down. The extra beef will allow him to be more successful in the 4-3. Word from camp is, Maybin is getting put into a lot more packages than what he was apart of last year. His ferocious style of play, and motor will make him our leading pass rusher. We should also keep an eye on Ricky Sapp, or as I named him "Spinal Sapp."
Are you surprised by Quinton Coples reported lack of production so far in camp?
BDTSL - No, I’m not particularly surprised. From what I’ve heard, Rex Ryan’s plan for Coples was to overwhelm him with information at first, and then simplify it. The idea is to break him down and then rebuild him, stronger than ever before. It seems that this is similar in concept to what they did with Wilkerson, except Coples will be working with a stronger (on the whole) line and line coach than Wilkerson had.
JB - No, a rookie struggling out of the gate isn't very big news. I don't think it really matters that much either. Last year we heard about how Ropati Pitoitua and Jamaal Westerman were tearing up camp. Neither of them even made enough of an impression during the season to even stay on the team for another year. Camp usually isn't very indicative of how somebody is going to perform during the year.
Do you think Quinton Coples will have a similar season to Muhammad Wilkerson’s rookie year?
BDTSL - I think it’s going to be better. Wilkerson steadily became more and more solid as the season went on. He’s one of the top candidates the team seems to have pegged as likely for a breakout season. All of that said, Coples will have a better season because he has more raw talent coming out of college (motivational issues aside, which it seems have not been an issue in camp) and has a better line to work with. The switch to more 4-3 looks should also help Coples, as more players will be demanding double teams, which should leave him in 1-1 situations he can dominate.
JB - If he does, it will probably be a disappointment. Wilkerson saw most of his time on a three-man line. He had to face constant double teams and do a lot of the dirty work. When he did a good job, it usually wasn't obvious.
It looks like Coples is going to play most of his time on a four man line and be featured on the defense. He's going to be asked to be a playmaker. I expect more from him.
GGM - I am not really expecting Coples to blow everyone out of the water day one. He will need some time to get in the rhythm of things, but he will produce. It's my opinion that he will mature much like Wilkerson did last year. It could be around week 8 when we start to see the beast that is Coples. Of course until then, people are going to be all over us, calling him a bust. Let them say what they want. We have a real player here. He was one of my guys before the draft, and I'm sticking with him.
BDTSL - No. I love Tebow and all, but that truly isn’t why he’s here. He’s here to push Sanchez and be a jack-of-all-trades of sorts around the team, and maybe to spark the team if Sanchez falters. But unless Sanchez has several games like the one against the Buffalo Bills his rookie season (five interceptions), I really don’t believe Tebow will fully replace Sanchez as the starter.
JB - I'll say yes. The Jets are going back to asking Sanchez to play the game manager role. His job will be to not lose the game. That isn't really what he is, though. He's not a steady guy who will go out, move the chains a bit, and protect the ball. He's a guy who makes some spectacular plays one week to win a game and some boneheaded plays another week to lose a game.
In his heart, Rex Ryan doesn't want that. He wants the steady, less spectacular guy who will protect the ball. Rex wants his defense to win the game. The offense's job is to control the ball to rest the defense, not turn it over, and stay out of the way. There's probably going to be a stretch where Sanchez kills the team. It has happened the first three years. Now Rex has the option of putting in a guy with whom he can run it 75% of the time, which is a dream scenario for him.
The fans will help it along. Jets fans aren't very patient. They booed Sanchez before a game started last year for Pete's sake. The second Sanchez struggles, the calls for Tebow will build. For their part, the Jets feel so much pressure to play Tebow that they've come up with nutty ideas like playing him on special teams.
To avoid an eventual benching, Sanchez has to become a lot more consistent and efficient in a hurry.
GGM - Not only do I believe that Tebow won't take over for Sanchez; I don't even think he would start if Mark goes down with an injury. I was listening to ESPN radio about a day ago, and they brought up a theory that I was thinking back when we traded for Tebow. McElroy is still very raw, but if I had to pick between him and Tebow for a better passer, I would pick Greg. The team has also made Tebow gain weight this off season. This tells me that they want him to be a runner rather than a passer. The Broncos wanted him to lose weight so he can get rid of the ball faster. If Mark goes down, I think Tebow's role stays the same.
Thank you all for your questions, and hopefully we can do this again soon.