clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

NY Jets: NFL Power Rankings

Where do you think the Jets should rank this season?

Derik Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

In the days before the 2013 football season opened, nine of the ten sports media outlets I charted rated the Jets no better than 30th in their Power Rankings.  This is what I thought about that going into last season:

The most likely explanation ... is that people doing Power Rankings get a little lazy toward the bottom of the rankings.  They are consequently influenced by the prevailing narrative, which currently is that the Jets are a national laughing stock.  Instead of delving into the nitty gritty of roster changes, upgrades and downgrades to personnel, coaching changes, etc., they just say OK, the Oakland Raiders, Jacksonville Jaguars and the Jets are all pathetic jokes.  So we'll just rank them all in some random order and be done with it.  Leaving the Jets at somewhere between 30 and 32.  This seems the most likely explanation for the near unanimity of what I consider to be undue pessimism regarding the Jets.  It's not going to be a pretty year, but I very much doubt the Jets belong lumped in with the teams vying for the first overall draft pick next year.  Of course, every fan of every team likely thinks the same thing about their favorite team until the real games begin.  We'll see if my view of things or the consensus media view turns out to be more accurate.  I'm betting the media's wrong on this one.

Score that Smackdad 1, sports media 0.

So what about this year?  Talk of the Jets as a circus and a laughing stock has died down since John Idzik took the reins as GM.  The Jets also finished 8-8 last year, so the media wasn't likely to predict they would be the worst team in the NFL in 2014. Here are the current power rankings for the Jets by 10 sports media outlets:


Power Ranking

Associated Press


CBS Sports




Fox Sports



NY Daily News




Shutdown Corner


USA Today


Walter Football


The average ranking is 21.  Other than Walter Football's absurd 30 ranking (they seem stuck in a time warp with the Jets are a joke narrative), the rankings are all pretty tightly clustered from 17-23.  In short, most analysts think the Jets are a slightly below average team.  Here are some thoughts attached to the rankings:

Fox Sports:

Geno Smith looks to have taken a step forward in his sophomore season with help from free-agent addition Eric Decker. To the surprise of many, it is the defense that has given the Jets problems as injuries have beset their secondary.

Call this ranking a vote of confidence for Rex Ryan. With that out of the way, we have to ask, who is going to cover for him ... literally? Cornerback Dee Milliner has been dinged up. Who knows where corner Dimitri Patterson -- who has since been released -- went when he was AWOL this preseason? (I'm going with Hurricane Harbor. It was one of the last weekends of summer, after all.) The safeties are so-so at best. We're used to the defense holding down the fort for the Jets, but that will be much tougher for this unit to do now.

CBS Sports:

If Geno Smith or Mike Vick come through with the Jets defense and a revised running game, things might go well for Rex Ryan's team. How long will Rex Ryan stick with Geno if he's not playing well? The Jets are more likely wild-card candidates than division champs and every win counts. Don't be surprised if they lead the league in rushing this year with Chris Johnson and Chris Ivory leading the way.


This could be the year that Rex Ryan can't count on his defense to stake his team to at least six wins. It might be the weakest secondary he's ever had in New York. If Michael Vick's mentoring of Geno Smith pays off, the Jets offense might finally be able to carry its weight.

Walter Football:

I loved a recent report that said the Jets' coaching staff was shocked that their veteran backup quarterback - the one who played for Philadelphia last year - didn't put much effort into winning the starting job. Oh, you mean the guy who drowned dogs with his bare hands didn't show enough heart? You don't say! Then again, if I were QBDK, I wouldn't want to win the starting job either; it would further expose how bad he is and would hurt his chances of getting paid for backup jobs in the future.

This Jets team is awful ... Idzik didn't spend a third-round pick on a punter, but he's still one of the worst general managers in recent memory.

I would say this year the analysts got it pretty close to accurate.  It is pretty interesting to see how quickly the "Jets are a joke" narrative has died down.  Fans commenting on opposing teams' blogs and website comment boards may be still carrying that torch, but it appears the media has largely moved on.  Unlike last year the analysis is not unduly biased by the circus motif.  Instead, Walter Football notwithstanding, we get a narrative based largely on actual football reasons for the rankings.

Perhaps the Jets should be rated a bit higher, depending largely on the progress of Geno Smith or lack thereof, but it's difficult to fault these rankings too much.  I could see the Jets sneaking into the top 12, if everything goes right.  If Geno becomes an average NFL quarterback (more than that is probably expecting too much in year 2), if Milliner gets healthy and becomes a decent CB1, if the young defensive line continues to develop and if Calvin Pryor proves to be everything he looked to be in limited preseason action, then the Jets could be a playoff team.  Likewise, if Milliner's ankle injury lingers and the CBs are terrible, if Geno fails to make big improvements, if the offensive line is worse than last year, and if the pass rush doesn't develop enough to compensate for the depleted secondary, the Jets could be a bottom 12 team.  I'm going to split the difference and call the Jets average this year.  Average, meaning they should be ranked 16th.

How about you?  Where do you think the Jets should be ranked?  Did the media get it right this year, or are they way off base?