A new era of offense is on the horizon as the New York Jets make key offseason moves. Is it enough to hit that next level? Dan Salem and Todd Salem debate in part two of this week’s TD Sports Debate. Two brothers from New York yell, scream and debate the NFL and sports.
Rex Ryan’s strength is defense. He squeezes that orange as hard as anyone and knows the schemes that best compliment his defensive personnel. I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Jets go for a safety or cornerback in the first two rounds of the draft, if there is a stud available. That’s the defense’s current weakness. I’m still riding high on the line and linebackers, but the unit will get run off the field against the likes of Tom Brady and Peyton Manning if they don’t shore up the secondary. All that being said, I like my odds with Rex Ryan hiding a defensive weakness.
The Jets get better next season with the improvements on offense and they’ve made quite a few. Nothing soothes a flawed defense like an offense that stays on the field and sustains drives. I haven’t watched my Jets do that in years… the Mark Sanchez era was plagued by three and outs. Last season found more balance, but I’d hate to know the actual statistic. Its like the offense agreed to let the fans watch the defense more often, since it was the team’s strength. With the additions of Michael Vick and Eric Decker, the Jets offense is finally starting to resemble a unit worth watching. As a fan I always watched, but deep down I knew the offense was boring. Sure, they’d get a big play every other week or so, but long drives were a thing to root for because they rarely happened. And oh boy did I celebrate if the Jets actually got in the endzone! The last few seasons have been tough on offense.
I love Eric Decker. I think he’s underrated, putting up consistently great numbers with little fanfare around the country. As the top wide receiver on the Jets, Decker is going to shine. Geno Smith has a new best friend. Marty Mornhinweg has two. Michael Vick is still a dynamic talent. I shudder to hear the phrase ‘wildcat’ after the Jets butchered it with Tim Tebow, but Michael Vick and Geno Smith can actually run a two tiered attack. I’m not sure exactly how this works, considering no one has done it with much success in the NFL. All I know is Vick makes the Jets better and Geno remains an underrated quarterback. Adding play-makers to this offense fills the primary holes this team had.
You bring up an interesting point. There has never really been a successful case of a team using two quarterbacks concurrently. Problems always arise. The Jets are clearly not the epitome of locker room cohesiveness, but it would be fascinating if they tried to rotate QBs in and out depending on the situation, or even just depending on who had the hot hand. Michael Vick and Geno Smith both deserve to start in this league. Vick has proven that with the breadth of his career, and Geno proved it with a capable rookie season. There is literally no way New York would actually employ a quarterback rotation, but I can still hope…especially since I have no qualms about delighting in the possibilities of it either working to perfection or blowing up in the Jets’ faces. Either way, it’s fun for me!
The Jets will be a nice test case of another famous offensive cliché this coming season as well, with Decker. We will find out if the classic “second receiver who has a huge season and moves to another team to become their go-to guy” can work. It has seemingly always failed in the past, from Alvin Harper to Peerless Price. Second receivers becoming offensive cogs rarely flourish. Decker has the chance to be the exception since Manning never really played favorites on Denver as far as routes or players were concerned. He threw to who was open, and Eric Decker got open a lot. Perhaps he can continue to do so in New York.
If either one of these situations play out in the Jets’ favor, and especially if both do, the team has a good chance at making the playoffs. The defense, even if it takes a step back, is still one of the better units in the AFC. As an impartial observer, it will be fun to finally see if the offense can support the defense and bring this team to the next level.