The Jets hierarchy said for months they were confident their starting QB was already on their roster before going out and trading for up in the draft for Mark Sanchez. Now the Jet hierarchy says they are confident that the wide receivers already on their roster can do the job. I wonder which WR the Jets will go after next?
The W's on the Jets roster are right now as follows:
Jericho Cotchery: Cotchery lacks the overall speed to be a #1 WR but has the chops to be a 80-90 catch 1200-1300 10 TD WR playing on this offense. The problem is without a #1 type WR playing opposite of him Cotchery will always be seeing the #1 CB on the other team with numerous double teams as well.
Chansi Stuckey: Stuckey works better in the slot, playing a similar game to the one Wayne Chrebet used to play and the one Wes Welker now plays in NE. Trying to turn him into a #2 WR would be a mistake. He belongs in the slot, not lining up as a #2 WR.
David Clowney: If there is a WR on the Jets who might have the ability to be a #1 WR on the Jets this is the guy. Clowney has the speed and the good hands to be a #1 WR for the Jets but he's not there yet. He needs to work on his route running and how to muscle the CB off of him to get into the pattern. Clowney also needs to become stronger physically and mentally.
Brad Smith: Brad Smith's value to the Jets is that he does so many things for the Jets. With the exception of special teams the downside to Smith is that he doesn't excel at anything. The former Missouri QB hasn't showed much as a WR. Smith has four or more catches just three times in his, he has had only one catch longer than 19 yards in his career to date and has never had more than 50 yards receiving in any game.
Dustin Keller: Keller is listed as a TE but with his ability and speed Keller can become a dangerous weapon for the Jets. He can't be covered by a LB because of his speed and view CBs can match Keller's strength and size advantage.
The one common thread running through everyone on this list is that they can all become better players if the Jets remove the burden of having to be something they're not. None of these guys is ready to step up and become the #1 WR the Jets need.
The Jets claimed the asking price on Anquan Boldin was too high, they also said they were trying to trade back into the 1st round with Cleveland so that they could draft Florida WR Percy Harvin. Even making the inquiries about those guys seems to indicate the Jets are actively searching for a WR.
We all know that Braylon Edwards and Anquan Boldin are on the block but there are a few free agent WRs who the Jets should consider looking into even though none of these guys are #1 WR anymore.
Marvin Harrison put up outstanding numbers for the Colts for eleven straight years until injuries limited him to just twenty games played over the past two seasons. Harrison will be 37 when the season starts and while he certainly is no longer a #1WR anymore he may have another season or two of good football left in him and could be a hold the fort kind of a guy until the Jets can either trade for WR help during the preseason or until they can draft another WR in the 2010 draft..
A dark horse still available is ex-Lions WR Mike Furrey. If that name rings a bell for you it's because he set an NFL record for the most passes caught by a non drafted player in NFL history, catching 98 passes for close to 1100 yds. and 6 TD's back in 2006. Another dark horse is Lance Moore. Moore had 80 catches for 925 yards and ten TDs last year for the Saints. Moore is a small (5-9 190 lbs) WR but is very quick off the ball and catches everything that comes his way.
The Jets are going to build a strong defense, a good running game and an offensive line to support Sanchez which should initially give Sanchez enough to work with but at some point the Jets are going to have to give him a go-to wide receiver.
One thing is certain, if Tannenbaum doesn't like what he sees from the current group of Jet WR he won't wait too long before making a deal for a WR. Trader Mike appears to be fearless when it comes making major moves to get a player he wants so don't be surprised if the Jets make yet a big announcement in the not too distant future about the Jets pulling another big deal, this time for a WR.