The New York Jets are the latest team to embrace a complete overhaul of their current roster, parting ways with beloved veterans.
The New York Jets have made the decision to embark on the process of rebuilding their roster from the ground up. What began with the release of the most tenured member of the team, Nick Mangold, has spawned in the departure of some of the highly paid veterans.
Darrelle Revis, Nick Folk, Breno Giacomini and the freshly released, Brandon Marshall, may just be the start to the cap casualties. Veterans, David Harris and Eric Decker may also find their tenures with Gang Green coming to an end in the next few weeks.
With the cap increasing to $167 million and the savings exceeding more than $35 million, the Jets will be able to use free agency and the draft to overhaul several positions. A position that few Jets’ general managers have had the privilege to work with.
As free agency set to start next week, Mike Maccagnan will need to have a plan in place not just for the 2017 season, but for the future of the organization. A plan that, in the past, would have owner Woody Johnson being the final word. It will be interesting to see if this is still the dynamic or if the general manager will have more liberties to achieve his vision.
A swift change of personnel or a rebuild has occurred in the Big Apple. Fan bases have witnessed self-imposed changes in philosophy and in the case of the New York Mets, forced upon the franchise. A few years of suffering that has been rewarded over the past few seasons.
In 2010, the MLB Commissioner’s Office suggested that the Mets replace the fired Omar Minaya, with one of their own, Sandy Alderson. Alderson, who had to deal with the constraints in payroll due to the Bernie Madoff scandal, did the unthinkable in the New York market, he built the team through the farm system and lower costing free agents.
The rebuild has worked out for the Mets, who reached the World Series in 2015 for the first time since 2000. The rebuild has also garnered the Metropolitans a stable of young pitchers that look to be the future of the franchise. Alderson’s savvy moves have created a core, in which he can add pieces through free agency and his healthy farm system, as needs arise.
The New York Yankees, the most prestigious of the city’s franchises, also relied on a rebuild to regain the prominence that was lost during the late eighties and early nineties. The development of the “core four” within the farm system became the foundation for a run of World Series championships that was reminiscent of decades of the past.
For franchises that have built sustainable products, such as the New York Giants and the New Jersey Devils during the mid-90’s and early 2000’s, a rebuild has not been necessary. The front offices of these organizations have planned appropriately and have been able to follow a blueprint that has led to numerous titles in their respective sports.
The Brooklyn Nets seem to be the most likely of franchises to follow the Jets lead, the gamble with trading draft picks for aging veterans was risky and did not pay off. General Manager, Sean Marks does not have the luxury that Maccagnan now has. Marks will have to patiently wait for the return of the Nets own first round pick in 2019 — unless he does something drastic or bold.
The New York Jets have an opportunity here to recuse themselves as one of the laughing stocks of the NFL if they do this rebuild properly. The cap space is available and the franchise has seven draft picks, two in the third round, as a great basis to check off needs on Maccagnan’s checklist. Gang Green may be a few years away from respectability, but if done right, the crowd at MetLife could see exciting football year in and year out.