The New York Jets looked….less than impressive in 2016, but with some simple alterations, their future fortunes could be much better.
As fans are well aware of, the New York Jets are fresh off an abysmal 5-11 season. Everything fell apart early and swiftly for Gang Green, with seemingly nothing going right from the start.
However, Jets fans need to stay positive. The organization is just one season removed from winning 10 games. Head coach Todd Bowles is entering his third year with the team, and while 2016 was disappointing, 2017 will undoubtedly be better.
This offseason, the Jets have added Kevin Greene as their outside linebackers coach – a position in which he meets all the qualifications. Greene ranks third all-time with 160 sacks, and continued to play at a high level until the day he retired.
On the other side of the ball, the Jets hired John Morton as their new offensive coordinator. Morton was formally the wide receivers coach for the New Orleans Saints under offensive genius Sean Payton, and led a group that performed at a very high level this past season.
Saints receivers Brandin Cooks and Michael Thomas each had over 1,100 yards, helping quarterback Drew Brees pace the NFC in passing yards for the seventh straight year. That production was clearly influenced by the work of Morton, and hopefully he’ll help the Jets’ receiving core – including the youngster Quincy Enunwa and stalwarts Eric Decker and Brandon Marshall – play at a similarly high level.
The Jets already have the players to build a great franchise around.
Second-string running back turned starter Bilal Powell averaged 5.5 yards a carry, and forms a solid combination with Matt Forte in the Jets’ backfield. Wide receiver Robby Anderson was the biggest surprise of 2016, going from an undrafted rookie to a starter, and will surely be a big part of the 2017 roster.
Gang Green picks sixth in the upcoming NFL draft, giving them the ability to fix some of the multitude of holes in their offense with that advantageous draft slot.
A great option at the Jets’ spot is quarterback Deshaun Watson. The former Clemson star could clear up the quarterback situation and allow the Jets to focus on their other positions of need, such as the offensive line and cornerback, with later choices.
It is unlikely, though, that the Jets reach the Super Bowl in the next few years. However, their offseason hires provide them with a solid structure to work towards that goal.
When that fateful night in April rolls around, general manager Mike Maccagnan just needs to execute if he wants the Jets to fly back into the playoff race again.