1-2: Silver Linings

1-2, 6 INTs, SEA, PIT, ARI, BAL in the next 4 weeks

If you're looking for panic, the heading above is everything you need as a Jets fan to convince yourself that the Jets are headed for another season full of disappointment and squandered opportunities. Ryan Fitzpatrick had the worst game and the worst 4th quarter of any QB in recent Jets memory and the next 4 opponents aren't getting any easier.

Cue the mobs and people calling for the backup QB.

"Use the term silver lining when you want to emphasize the hopeful side of a situation that might seem gloomy on the surface. The common expression "every cloud has a silver lining" means that even the worst events or situations have some positive aspect." -

It may be an unpopular position among Jets fans, but we must focus on the positives in this situation. Below are the reasons for hope after an embarrassing loss and a 1-2 record.

The defensive line is possibly the best in the NFL

Leonard Williams appears to be having a breakout year. Last year as a rookie Williams was already a top level talent against the run as a 3-4 DE, and despite being able to get good pressure against the QB he only had a fairly pedestrian 3 sacks. Through 3 games this year he has already matched that sack total while being even more dominant against the run. Oh yeah, and he's just 22 years old and under contract for another 4 years.

Williams alone is enough to have hope in our defensive line, but when you combine the the play of Mo coming back from injury as strong as ever, and Sheldon being as strong and versatile as he is, you begin to understand why the Jets have allowed the 3rd fewest rushing yards so far this season.

Last and not least, the McClendon signing looks like a steal. He has already matched his career sack total over his previous 3 years in Pittsburgh in the first game against the Bengals and he has continued his dominant play against the run.

The Offensive Line

Easily the biggest point of contention in the off-season other than the QB position, was how the front office would solve the offensive lines issues. Winters looked like a turnstile at RG along with Breno at RT, Brick's play was declining and then he retired, and Mangold was battling injuries most of 2015. After only drafting a 5th round tackle, many of us were justifiably concerned about how the OL would hold up. Much to my surprise and delight, the offensive line has played well beyond expectations and has been an above average group so far this year against three good defenses. The RT by committee plan was unpopular but seems to be yielding positive results while Brian Winters seems like he's finally starting to earn that starting role. Pair that with a healthy Nick Mangold and Ryan Clady and we've got a decent group up front. Let's just hope the injury bug doesn't bite because the Jets still do lack some depth, but the line play has certainly caught my attention as the second biggest silver lining.

Our trenches seem to be our strength so far, and that will be important in the second half of the season.

Darron Lee looks like a good pick

I was one of the most skeptical of the Lee pick, a fast ILB who struggles to shed blocks and is overrated in terms of his coverage ability. Seeing him shoot the gaps in run defense, and chasing down plays from the backside has been a thing of beauty though. As he gains coaching and experience, I expect this kid to become a very good LB and could be the key speed blitzer off of the edge the Jets have been looking for. Hitting on your first round picks is crucial, and Maccagnan appears t have gone 2-2 so far.

Quincy Enunwa and Robby Anderson

Quincy Enunwa has been a revelation this year, he seems to have corrected his case of stone hands from last year catches everything that comes his way. He's a tough nosed wild card type of player who Chan has been using in a variety of ways in his offense. I think as Quincy goes this offense goes, and that's something I couldn't imagine myself saying a month ago.

As for Robby Anderson, he started to get some reps last week against Kansas City and while I may be jumping the gun a bit, I'm very excited about this guy. He runs sharp routes, has length, and more than enough speed to stretch the field. All of that for an UDFA provides great value and means the Jets can go 4 wide with several great WRs.

Matt Forte

There was a lot of talk about the potential decline of Forte after Chicago declined to resign the 30 year old back, and those talks only got louder after Forte was largely ineffective in the preseason. But Forte has been a great fit in chan's offense and is averaging just under 4 yards per carry along with showing his capability in the passing game.

Where can the Jets realistically improve and what is potentially beyond saving?

The Secondary

The Jets can realistically expect the play of Darelle Revis to improve in terms of not giving up the big plays, but the overall play of the secondary is very much worth discussing. The amount of cushion the CBs have given WRs has minimized the impact the Jets DL could have had - especially in the KC game. There are scheme changes that Bowles & co. have to take a hard look at , but I'm not sure if the problem is that easily solved. Marcus Williams has been struggling in coverage and the Jets safeties have committed several coverage gaffes already. There is also reason to be concerned over Pryor's coverage abilities as well.

Ryan Fitzpatrick

Although I don't think he should have been benched against Kansas City based on the way the game unfolded, I do think he is officially on notice. Geno Smith better start preparing extra hard, because Fitz's leash is getting shorter and shorter and Geno might just get his shot at redemption with a tough upcoming schedule for the Jets. With that said, I expect this to play out similarly to how Fitz's whole career has played out, which means that he will bounce back - not to the highs of the BUF week 2 game, but not to the KC week 3 game either. I expect more games like week 1 and better. Just under 60% completion percentage, 2-1 TD-INT ratio, and around 250 yards passing.

Brandon Marshall

He's had a couple of critical drops and is already pretty banged up. With no bye week for another 8 weeks, it may be a down year for Marshall. If he can recover, I see no reason to expect anything less than what we've previously seen from him and I believe he will only get into better "football shape" and commit fewer drops as the season goes on.

The Jets are 1-2 after a tough 1 point loss to the Bengals and a thorough beating at Arrowhead. I expect the KC loss to be the worst of the season and for the Jets to begin to rebound. I don't know if the Jets will reach 10 wins again this year, but I have more hope in long term plan of the organization this year than I did at this point last year. There is more young talent on the roster and those guys are showing progress. If nothing else, the Jets have the talent to compete with just about any team in the league, it's simply a matter of execution in the secondary and what version of Ryan Fitzpatrick shows up on any given Sunday.

As always, go Jets!

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