The summer of 2009, for the New York Jets, is something of a new beginning (again!). A new head coach, a new quarterback, and a new attitude. However, for some reason these stories have dominated the New York sports headlines since the draft. What about every thing else on the team? Well there is so much more to the Jets this summer, that for the sake of this article, I am going to pretend that the Jets have a solidified starter at the quaterback position.
Lets start with he most pressing hole on the team. Wide Receiver. As of right now i would say that the top two are Jericho Cotchery and Chansi Stuckey. However, that does one thing, bore me. The problem is that, in all his wisdom, Eric Mangini loved to have possession wide receivers and sacrificed speed to get players in that mold. Think Wayne Chrebet here folks. All hands, and no speed. Don't get me wrong, Cotchery is very good and I trust him to catch, well, everything thrown in his vicinity, but that does not win games. Gang Green needs a deep threat and there is limited availability. However, there is one person, on the market, who is a seasoned veteran and can teach the young recievers more than any coach: Marvin Harrison. Although he is 33 years old, he can still run and catch better than 90% of the league. Signing him for two years would go a long way with development and for the offense.
Last year, the Jets were the lead rushing team in the AFC. Well that is just dandy. Thank you offensive line and Brett Favre. But there is no great runner in the backfield. Thomas Jones is old (by NFL standards) and Leon Washington is tiny. Shonn Greene seems like a good draft pick, but so did Ryan Leaf, we will have to wait and see on that. The problem here is the lack of availability out there for the team to choose from. Deuce McAllister is out there, but again, there is an age and knee issue there. Unless Shonn Greene proves himself as a valuable player, expect this position to be fairly mediocre this coming season.
There are a few other issues as well. I am not sold on Jim Leonhard as a bonafide NFL starter at the safety position. He is very short and goes for the big hit way too much. Special teams concern me as well. Jay Feely is a sub-par kicker and Reggie Hodges is a nobody punter. I want Ben Graham back. Cutting Nugent was a mistake also. Stupid Mangenius.
The last two things I wanted to touch on were Calvin Pace and the defensive end positions. First Calvin Pace took a dietary supplement that was banned and is now going to miss the first four games of the season. How dumb do you get. Now we have to deal with the underwhelming Vernon Gholston filling in. Can someone inform number 56 that it is his job to enjoy football and try to succeed at it, thanks. Shaun Ellis is getting old and I can honestly say that the other side of the defensive line has nobody good enough to play there. That should be the draft focus in the next years draft and why didn't we go after Julius Peppers? Simple answer there: Same Old Jets. We need a pass rusher who makes quarterbacks cry for their mothers. We have the linebackers who can do that (minus Gholston) and Kris Jenkins. Well, how about someone else on the edge for a brutal pass rush.
This team is certainly NOT a Superbowl contender this year. But if we can fill these pieces in the next few years, all I can say is; I Guarantee it!