The New York Jets are bad. How do they stack up compared to the 0-16 NFL teams?
Every year there’s one NFL team that looks to be the standout choice to land the No. 1 overall pick in the following year’s draft. The New York Jets appear to have a pretty firm handle on that top spot in the 2021 NFL Draft, but how do they compare to some other really bad teams in recent years?
We’re only six games in, of course, but the Jets really look pitiful. They can’t move the football, which is a big part of the sport, and defensively they can’t limit the opponent from doing much damage. It’s been tough to watch the train wreck that is the Jets this season.
Of course, every week people claim the Jets are the worst team they’ve ever seen, so I decided to go through the previous “worst teams” from the past few years and figure out if they’re on par with how bad those teams are.
The two biggest teams to look at here are the 2008 Detroit Lions and the 2017 Cleveland Browns, as they’re the only ones to ever go 0-16. The Browns even had a parade to celebrate the occasion. That was a real thing that happened.
What do the New York Jets look like up against the ’08 Lions and ’17 Browns?
We know that the ’08 Lions and ’17 Browns didn’t win a single game during their nightmare seasons and that’s looking like a real possibility for the Jets as well, who don’t have a winnable game left on their schedule. They play a really tough schedule actually, facing the Bills, Chiefs, and Patriots in their next three games, so 0-8 is most definitely on the table here.
Surprisingly, the Jets aren’t the worst offense in the league to this point, actually sitting third behind the Giants and the Football Team. Defensively, they’re nowhere near the bottom of the ranks and actually sit in the middle of the pack. We saw on Sunday how the Jets offense should be shouldering a fair share of the blame and not their defense. But football is a team sport, so everyone’s responsible.
While Jets fans are suffering this season, they’re not suffering as much as Browns fans were in 2017. Cleveland had the worst offense in the league that year and had the second-worst defense en route to their 0-16 season.
Even the 2008 Lions weren’t that bad, as they had the sixth-worst offense, but their defense was ranked as the worst in the league, meaning they were always playing from behind.
It’s going to be hard to find a team as bad as that 2017 Browns team was (even the 2016 Browns secured a win), but the Jets might be closing in on that territory. The ’17 Browns averaged 14.6 points per game. Through six games, the Jets are averaging 12.5 points per game offensively. According to Pro Football Talk, that’s on pace to be the worst point differential in NFL history. If you’ve watched them play this season, that shouldn’t be surprising to hear.
Looking at New York’s performance on Sunday, they really do appear to have the top pick locked up already. Joe Flacco, who’s been in for the injured Sam Darnold, took a 28-yard sack and the team just couldn’t do anything offensively. It’s baffling how Adam Gase hasn’t been fired yet, but hey – Give the organization props I guess, as it’s clear they’re tanking to get Trevor Lawrence.
If Lawrence is smart, he might consider returning to Clemson for his senior year to avoid playing for the dumpster fire that is the Jets. Darnold hasn’t been good, but we don’t know how much of this is on him, as Flacco hasn’t fared much better and it really does appear to be coaching that is the issue for the Jets.
Right now the Jets might not be the worst team of all-time, but no one will be surprised if they go 0-16.