As we arrive at the 2016 NFL Draft, what are the needs the Jets have on offense?
In honor of Rex Ryan and Mark Sanchez, let's use our color coded system to judge.
Red: The Jets do not have any immediate need.
Yellow: The Jets do not have a pressing need at this position, but an additional quality player could take the position to another level.
Green: The Jets have a glaring need.
The only quarterbacks the Jets have under contract are Geno Smith and Bryce Petty. As many have pointed out, Smith was placed in a very unfavorable situation during his two years as starter. With that said, he did not do much of anything to suggest he will eventually become a franchise quarterback with a better supporting cast. He rarely elevated his teammates. Petty is a total project. The Jets might hope he turns into something, but they cannot possibly build their future with Petty as their one and only option. At this point, it might be the weakest quarterback situation in the NFL. Ryan Fitzpatrick might or might not return, but he would be a stopgap.
We said many times heading into the offseason that the Jets would have a limited amount to spend and needed to prioritize a few signings. They prioritized the running back position, bringing back Bilal Powell and adding Matt Forte and Khiry Robinson. Even though Zac Stacy was unproductive in his first season with the Jets, he gives the team a fourth string player with a 1,000 yard season from scrimmage under his belt. On paper, this looks like a quality deep backfield stable.
You could make a strong case that Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker are the best 1-2 punch at wide receiver in the league. Does this mean the Jets should avoid drafting a wide receiver early? Not necessarily. Chan Gailey uses four receiver sets as much as any offensive coordinator in the league, and the Jets got virtually nothing outside of their top two last year. The Jets do have Devin Smith, but the Ohio State product's injury will prevent him from getting offseason practice reps he needs to develop.
The Jets might have had the worst group of tight ends in the NFL last season. Is this a glaring need? Perhaps I am being optimistic, but Jace Amaro is back. While he is a wild card, he did have a nice rookie season. Quincy Enunwa also contributed as a blocker last season and came on near the end of the year. It depends on the potential you think this group has. In any event, drafting a tight end would probably only help in the long run. No rookie tight end comes in and changes games right off the bat.
This is a shaky spot for the Jets. At left tackle, they are dealing with a player in Ryan Clady who has missed over 60% of his team's game over the last three seasons. The right side of the line also needs to be totally revamped. Brian Winters and Breno Giacomini are an uninspiring duo. The Jets might need to cut Giacomini to clear enough salary to get through the 2016 season anyway.