Last season: The New York Jets ended their season in fourth place in the AFC East, finishing with a record of 4-12. The team underwent a rebuilding season, as they drafted franchise cornerstone Sam Darnold third overall. The defense struggled, and Darnold would end up having an up-and-down rookie season: he threw for 2865 yards, 17 touchdowns, and 15 picks. The Jets were eliminated from playoff contention by week 14. After the season was over, they would undergo big changes, firing head coach Todd Bowles and General Manager Mike McCagnan. They were replaced with new Head Coach Adam Gase and new General Manager Joe Douglas. The team will attempt to improve on their 4-12 record and bring optimism to their fanbase.
Transactions: The Jets had a pretty successful offseason. They revamped their offensive line, trading a fifth round pick for All-Pro guard Kelechei Osemele. They also traded a conditional seventh round pick for guard Alex Lewis, and they convinced center Ryan Kalil to come out of retirement and sign a one-year deal. They signed slot receiver Jamison Crowder and all-Pro running back Le’Veon Bell. They also helped solidify their defense, signing inside linebacker CJ Mosley, who hopefully serves as veteran leadership to the team.
Title Hopes: All in all, the Jets were able to improve the supporting cast around their young, up-and-coming second year quarterback Sam Darnold. They’ve now given him tools to develop and grow to hopefully utilize his tools as much as possible. Le’Veon Bell might be the best running back in the league, taking pressure off a young signal caller. The defense now has promise, with second-year safety Jamal Adams and newly-signed line-backer CJ Mosley. They also have pro bowl defensive end Leonard Williams, and they drafted Quinnen Williams third overall in the 2019 NFL draft. This squad should be vastly better than last season. They have a chance to make the playoffs, and possibly get a bit further than that.
Tragic Flaw: This team has plenty of promise on both sides of the ball, but so many things could go wrong. It’s a young team adjusting to a new head coach and system. There are still some question marks on both sides of the ball. The defense is still mostly unproven. On offense, there are several new pieces, and it will be interesting to see if they’ll mesh. Le’Veon Bell was out of football for an entire year! Who truly knows what he is as a player? He didn’t even play in the pre-season, so we have to wait till Week One. As for Darnold, he is tremendously talented, and has the potential to be among the best quarterbacks in football. But he just turned 22! He has so much to learn, and so it’s a lot to ask of a young quarterback to carry his team to the playoffs. On top of all that, they’re in the same division as Tom Brady and Bill Belichick. It’s really hard to compete with a dynasty, and the hope is the Jets find a way to develop one of their own.
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