Well, that’s actually probably not going to happen. Why? Because they are “the same old Jets,” that’s why. However, for shits and giggles (emphasis on the giggles), I’d like everyone to take some time to step on into my dream world. In this fantastical world where I love to spend the majority of my time, the Jets are the odds on favorite to win, not only the AFC East, but also the Super Bowl. I know, crazy right?
Now there are a few things different about the Jets in this world. For starters, they have a starting QB. Ryan Fitzpatick has been brought back under a 3 year contract totaling $24 million with $12 million the first year and incentives for the next two years that could bring the total up to $36 million (Sort of like the exact contract that was reportedly offered and turned down by Fitz from the Jets). That’s certainly an upgrade from his $3.25 million earned last year. Yes, in this world, Fitz has made his triumphant return and he is all set to lead Gang Green this season. Geno Smith has gotten the boot and is searching for a job elsewhere and Hackenberg and Petty are ready to watch their veteran starter and learn to be the future.
Other pieces of this championship team remain the same. The dynamic duo of Marshall and Decker are ready to get back to work. Last year they were one of the most feared receiving duos in the league combining for 26 touchdowns, 2,529 yards, and setting an NFL record by both scoring in the same game 10 times. They will be ready to go again and maybe one of other receiving pieces like Quincy Enunwa, will step up and make this one of the best all-around receiving cores in the league.
Although Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell played tremendous last year, the Jets showed they are in a ‘win now’ mode by bringing in the veteran running back Matt Forte, who will be not only a powerful ball carrier but will also be a threat as a check down receiver out of the backfield. Let’s just hope the 30 year old can stay healthy.
The Jets defense may have lost Snacks Harrison but they are still a dominant force. The additions of Jarvis Jenkins and Steve McLendon along with the retention of Mo Wilkerson, Sheldon Richardson, and Leonard Williams provide for a very intimidating defensive front. Linebacker Darron Lee was added in the draft and reports say he is performing well in the offseason and is hungry to learn from the veterans in front of him, Harris and Henderson who my not be ahead of him for too much longer. Big things are expected of CB Marcus Williams this year after performing great in his limited time last season; and who knows, maybe Revis has been pounding some brews from the fountain of youth. With Todd Bowls at the helm I’m confident this defense will be ready to play.
This is all well and good and in my dream world, that is enough to get it done. In this unforgiving, real world, I doubt it will be. The Jets are tied for the seventh toughest schedule in the league and five of the first 6 teams that they face are playoff teams from last year. That’s not to mention that they still do not have a starting QB and it’s looking more and more like Geno Smith will be that starter which is terrifying to me. I don’t care what stats anyone wants to throw at me, what I saw last year between Fitz and his offense was not quantitative. It was an intangible connection between leader and teammates. That’s nothing like Geno who gets his jaw broken by his teammates and has no one back him up. I doubt it will be this year, but one day, whether I am still standing on my own or sitting in a wheel chair, I know I will see the New York Jets march down the Canyon of Heroes as Super Bowl Champions.