Thursday, January 3, 2013
A Few Hundred Words on the 2012 New York Jets
I'm prepared to talk about the Jets 2012 season now.
I've mentioned in the past that in all my years of being a Jets fan, this might have been my least favorite. At least during the 1-15 debacle I was a freshmen in college with my whole life ahead of me. My distaste for this season doesn't come from Mark Sanchez regressing terribly, a 6-10 record, putting up less than 20 points a game, having the best defensive player in the league injured for the year or still not having a legitimate pass rusher. It was because of the media. Record wise, the Jets had done the same or worse than 2012 on three other occasions already. It's fine. It happens. The one thing that got under my skin all year was that the Jets were a "circus." Granted, they did sign up for extra media attention when Woody wanted to bring in Tim Tebow but I think the public and media perception of how much Tim Tebow SHOULD have been used overshadowed how much the Jets planned on using him. Prior to the season people were predicting that Tebow was here to eventually unseat Sanchez but the Jets never said that. They emphasized that Sanchez was the starter and Tebow was the back up and there would be a package of plays for Tebow that would be sprinkled in. Rex also said that Tebow can be used lightly or up to 20 plays a game depending on the situation. Everyone seemed to run with that "20" number. I'm sure you can point to Rex starting Greg McElroy over Tebow in Week 16 as mishandling the Tim Tebow situation but if you look at it objectively, you could not start Tebow in Week 16. It was abundantly clear by that point that Tebow was not coming back next year. Personally I don't think you could have risked Tebow having any chance for success in a meaningless game. That would have caused an even bigger uproar. But at no point in the season did I think the Jets lied about Tebow's role. I think it was blown out of proportion because he was Tim Tebow. If they never made that trade and Drew Stanton was sitting as the #2 then Sanchez would have been benched weeks before he was. The Jets had a package for Tim Tebow and they know he can't run a pro style offense.
I understand Rex has kind of made his bed with all the negative press the Jets get but other than his off base statement about how this could be the best team he's ever coached, Rex was very tame this year. He was still media friendly but without any bold predictions and rarely talking playoffs or looking ahead. I do believe that Rex Ryan will be a head coach again and he will have learned from his mistakes here and be successful (Spoiler Alert! I don't think he's back next year.)
Touching on what actually happened on the field this year, I want to blurb about a few players:
-Shonn Greene: Another yawn of a 1000 yard season. I'm ready to move on from him. I like Bilal Powell better (although I don't think he's a workhorse either) and I'm a believer in not spending a lot of money on RBs. The Jets don't have a lot of flexibility with the cap so I'd task my new GM with finding a cheap alternative to pair with Powell.
-Braylon Edwards: Despite having zero success since he left the Jets, I always said that the Jets picked wrong when they kept Santonio Holmes over Edwards. I view Santonio Holmes as a glorified slot receiver masquerading as a #1. When healthy I like what Edwards brings to the table. Sure he drops a few too many but he also makes some tough catches as well. I'd take this opportunity to bring him back on the cheap. They still need help at WR but going in to next season with Holmes, Edwards and Jeremy Kerley as their Top 3, for some reason I wouldn't hate that based on their cap restraints.
-Mike DeVito: He's an unrestricted free agent now and I'm going to miss him if he goes. I was surprised to learn he made 2.5 million this year and he earned every penny. He is the blue collar guy that the Jets defense needs. Not flashy but he is really solid against the run.
-Quinton Coples: It was tough to see Chandler Jones have 6 sacks halfway through the season and going from confused by Seattle's pick to wishing Bruce Irvin lasted just one more spot. But although the Jets still desperately need a guy who can get to the QB on his own, I'm currently okay with Coples. He showed me flashes this year and surprisingly led the team in sacks this year (only 5.5 but still). I'm not getting too excited because apparently he has a history of lacking motivation but so far so good.
-Kyle Wilson: It confuses me why he is getting such a pass. I know the Jets some how ended up the year with solid numbers against the pass but I can't honestly say I think Wilson played well. He's not developing at all and I don't care what defensive back metrics you can throw at me, just watching him week in and week out, he seems to get toasted once or twice a game. I'm holding him to a higher regard than I should because of his draft status and maybe that's not fair anymore but if Antonio Cromartie or Darelle Revis leave one day, I don't think he's the answer as a starter.
So far in to the new year, the Jets let go of Mike Tannenbaum which was definitely the right now and they gave Rex a reprieve right now. I am on record as saying that I would like their to be a way for Rex to coach the team next year but if the GM goes, the coach has to go too. It's not fair to the new GM to not allow him to bring in his own coach. What I believe is happening is that Woody will hire a GM and Rex will be interviewing with him to keep his job. And personally I don't think Rex Ryan will be back. And if he is back, I won't be able to shake the notion that we hired the wrong guy as GM and he was only hired because of his willingness to let this situation happen. It's a tricky situation as a Jets fan.
The beauty of the NFL is that it's not impossible to change a team from a 6-10 record to 10-6 record in one year. So hopefully the Jets hire a good ringmaster to bring the big top down on all this circus garbage.
See? Circus analogies are annoying.