We’ve already started opening the doors on TFQ’s NFL Draft Advent Calendar! This is our Christmas – when NFL teams get to decide what sort of new toys they get under the tree to play with next season.
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Door #13 – The Jets
2012 finish: 6-10; missed playoffs
TOTAL PICKS: 7
When new general manager John Idzik took over in New York for the ousted Mike Tannenbaum the former must have felt like he’d been sold a monorail by Lyle Lanley in The Simpsons: This thing I took over is a steaming pile of junk.
© 20th Century Fox Television
Seriously – the Jets win in a photo finish with the Jaguars for the worst overall roster in the NFL. Consider:
When WR Santonio Holmes went down for the rest of the 2012 season with a foot injury in early October it wasn’t a stretch to argue that CB Antonio Cromartie was their next-best option at wideout, at least in terms of talent for the position.
This team’s defensive personnel is as ill suited to play head coach Rex Ryan’s style as Fat Elvis fit into his Vegas outfit.
“Without Revis this thing falls right off…. Viva!”
And, by signing QB David Garrard off of the free agent trash heap, they acquired what could be the most likely quarterback to win the starting job – if, that is, head coach Rex Ryan doesn’t make it an open battle and anoints Mark Sanchez the starter, opting for another dirty-ass comedy of errors like Sanchez orchestrated in 2012.
By season’s end, Sanchez looked about as mindfucked under center as Rick Ankiel did as an MLB pitcher once he couldn’t even throw the ball to the catcher anymore. Now, Sanchez has a new offensive coordinator, Marty Mornhinweg, who brings the West Coast scheme with him. That change will either free up Sanchez’s confidence, or force him to take another nosedive because the system demands cerebral reads and quick decisions. If Sanchez can somehow learn to react instead of thinking, he could pull it off. My bet is no. But despite this ongoing QB quandary (See how I haven’t mentioned Tebow yet?…. Shit), the Jets have far too many needs all over the board to take a passer in what is seen by most as a quarterback-weak draft year.
First, the offense. There was no such unit more, well, offensive in 2012 than New York’s. They finished the season ranked 28th in NFL in points per game (17.6), 30th in total yardage (299.2) and tied for the most turnovers on offense. It also lost RB Shonn Greene to free agency (Tennessee). There will be a lot of pressure on Holmes to rebound and take over games at times. I’ll get more specific than I have so far during this year’s TFQ Draft Advent Calendar and say that the Jets should take UCS WR Robert Woods with the 8th pick in the second round (39th overall). Sure, they took Stephen Hill last year, but there’s nothing wrong with three potential starters at a position that often fields three men on the field. The more options whichever subpar QB that takes the field has at his disposal, the better. Predict all you like, this offense and their defensive counterparts just need to add bodies.
Now, the defense. One way to further add bodies could be to trade injured All-World CB Derrelle Revis. As of this weekend, the trade talks with the Buccaneers have reportedly stalled. But adding picks by unloading your most talented player is more like hoping Batman The Scientist can save your runaway disaster than expecting Idzik to turn this franchise around anytime soon. This team desperately needs pass rushers to play Ryan’s style of aggressive defense, which means Idzik would like at least one draft selection in this year’s rusher-heavy draft, but which team wants to give up that value – and more – to acquire a player who hasn’t played a down of football since tearing up his knee? What’ s more, Ryan’s scheme is just as dependent on the sort of shutdown coverage on the edges that Revis provides as it is a pass rush. With this in mind, I think it will take a perceived rip-off deal in Idzik’s eyes before he moves Revis because he can likely keep the cornerback and still get 2 solid pass rusher prospects with the picks he already has. Most scouts I’ve read are saying that Georgia’s LB Jarvis Jones is going to go to New York at ninth overall – if his spinal stenosis is given the green light after a battery of medical tests. Then again, this defense can use help almost everywhere. Expect Idzik to be the conservative boss he’s said himself to be and not get too pretty with his top selection. Maybe LSU’ LBs Barkevious Mingo could be a forseeable gamble, if Ryan and the new GM are smitten with his raw size-athleticism combo. Any defensive tackle would do, but none of them should fall in that 9th overall area.
Hell, even the Jets’ special teams looked horrible under the coaching of guru Mike Westhoff. What most people overlook is that special teams largely depends on the depth of your roster, particularly at the more athletic positions like DBs, LBs, WRs and RBs. With a paper-thing roster, Westhoff was essentially forced to create gold with a pile of shit, and not even one of the best in the history of the league at the job could pull it off. It didn’t help that he had to make use of Tebow, who looked as lost as he would in a bar while out on the field, on the punt team. Fuck – that’s twice! Better stop before I get stigmata.
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STAY TUNED FOR THE REST OF THE DAYS LEADING UP UNTIL THE 2013 NFL DRAFT. WE’LL TAKE A LOOK AT EACH TEAM, AS WE OPEN THEM UP IN THE ADVENT CALENDAR. WE’LL ALSO BE DOING A LIVE TWEET-UP DURING THE DRAFT.