NFL: Top Five Reasons for The NY Jets' Rise To Prominence
A once pathetic, doormat, and sorry excuse for a franchise, is now arguably the most complete team in the NFL. Over the past five years, the NY Jets have made every right decision and transaction to set themselves up for what could very well be a super season.
Here's a list of the top five reasons for the rise of the once-sad NY Jets.
5. The Hiring of General Manager Mike Tannenbaum
In a move that was not expected back in 2006, the Jets pushed aside Terry Bradway and replaced him with a relatively unknown Mike Tannenbaum.
The Jets, then coming off a disappointing 4-12 season looked for a change within the organization and took a chance on Tannenbaum. He had been with the team since 1997, but was best known within the organization as an expert on the salary cap.
The man famous for bringing Curtis Martin to the Jets in 1998 has absolutely flourished in this role. His ability to evaluate talent in the draft and structure trades to move up/down have landed the Jets cornerstone players such as Nick Mangold, Darrelle Revis, Mark Sanchez, Shonn Greene, and D'Brickashaw Ferguson.
4. Trading Up To Draft Darrelle Revis
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The Jets traded their first-round selection, the first of their second-round selections, and their fifth-round selection to the Carolina Panthers in 2007 for the chance to move from the 25th pick to the 14th pick and draft Darrelle Revis.
Let's be realistic, every potential Superbowl contender needs a shut down corner and this guy is as good as it gets. The opposition might as well just stop throwing to his side as he covers like a blanket and he can catch too. Brilliant draft selection and possibly a future first ballet Hall of Famer.
3. Trading Up To Draft Mark Sanchez
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In 2009 the Jets gave up their first-round pick (No. 17 overall), their second-round pick (No. 52 overall), and a few bags of chips to the Cleveland Browns to move up to the fifth overall pick and select USC standout QB Mark Sanchez.
With all the tools, a year under his belt, and hard work put in during the offseason, we are viewing a potential superstar player emerging. Sanchez has gotten off to a brilliant start in his second year and is showing all the leadership qualities you would desire from your starting QB. He's as good as advertised and will only continue to grow in leaps and bounds.
2. Building Their Own Stadium
Finally getting out of the shadow of "Giants Stadium" was huge for this franchise. Having a home to call their own has dramatically reshaped the image of this organization.
At a construction cost of approximately $1.6 billion, it is the most expensive sports stadium ever built. The Jets are no longer a tenant in their home building. They are half owners of a beautiful facility that is sure to host plenty of their playoff games in the near future and is also the site of Super Bowl XLVIII.
1. The Hiring of Rex Ryan
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You either like him or you don't, but to not realize and appreciate what he has done for this franchise in a short period of time would be a travesty.
Known as a defensive mastermind, Ryan spent 10 years with the Baltimore Ravens as a defensive line coach and eventually coordinator. He has come to New York City and changed the culture of this organization. He has installed confidence, passion, and a swagger like no other.
Often vocal, Ryan speaks honestly at all times and wears his emotions on his sleeves. A true player's coach, he has earned the respect of all his players and the results show. An AFC Championship game appearance in his first year was remarkable for a team that many predicted to go 6-10.
He was the perfect fit for this team and town. The NY Jets' future is as bright as can be and there is no better pilot than Rex Ryan. He is clearly the best thing to ever happen to this franchise and reaching the Superbowl is no longer a dream. It's a reality and one that could happen this year.