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New York Jets Season Preview

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Joined: 21 Jan 2005
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Location: Bay Area
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2005 2:55 pm    Post subject: New York Jets Season Preview Reply with quote

The Jets are coming off a 10-6 season, but it’s hard to tell if they will follow up on it with another strong year. They had the benefit of an easy schedule last year and they struggled when the played top teams. But the way the Jets played in the playoffs left the impression that they can play competitively with anyone. If not for problems in their kicking game, they probably would have defeated the 15-1 Steelers and advanced to the conference championship. Of course, the Jets do not have the same team as last year as they had some key losses and newcomers.
Their most important loss is RT Kareem McKenzie, a player whose importance to the team in past years has gone unnoticed. The effect his departure will have on the team is being greatly underestimated. Kareem McKenzie is one of the league’s elite RTs and one of the league’s best run-blockers. Curtis Martin loved to his right and that had something to do with McKenzie’s stellar blocking. With McKenzie gone, it is highly unlikely Martin wins another rushing title. Expect to see a significant falloff in Martin’s production because of the loss of McKenzie. The team also lost promising backup Lamont Jordan, which was a blow because they were incorporating him into the offense and grooming him to succeed Martin. The good news is they brought in an excellent backup by signing Derrick Blaylock. The team will move Adrian Jones into the vacant RT job, but Jones is more of a mobile blocker and he is not good at opening up gaps in the running game. The line is still solid though. Kevin Mawae remains one of the league’s elite centers in his old age and Jason Fabini is a solid LT. Their OGs, Pete Kendall and Brandon Moore, are both solid starter who lack athleticism but get the job done consistently.
The big worry in the Jets’ offense is the health of Chad Pennington. His chronic shoulder problems continue to bother him and the offense will not work if he’s not healthy. The team wants to use a more vertical offense this year and to do that Pennington will need a healthy shoulder. Pennington is a great decision maker and an accurate passer and he’s very important to the offense. The other player who’s health is in question is WR Laveranues Coles, who the Jets traded for. When he played for the Jets a few years ago, Pennington was in his first year starting and the two had great chemistry. The team hopes Coles will show that he doesn’t have any lingering injury problems and play like the top 10 WR he has been at times. Justin McCareins is a good young WR with good size and potential. He has the size and physicality to be a good possession receiver and the team would like to try using him as a vertical weapon. The team has limited depth at WR. Wayne Chrebet is at the end of his playing days and he is not much of a factor anymore. The team would like to see second-year-pro WR Jerricho Cotchery, who contributed mostly on special teams in his rookie year, become their primary slot receiver. He is a good athlete with good size and while he doesn’t have top speed he is a good creating separation. The team also has Jonathan Carter, a speedy receiver who hasn’t been able to get his game together enough to contribute. The team traded for Doug Jolley, a solid receiving TE who represents an upgrade over last year’s starter, Anthony Becht. Also, Chris Baker is a decent receiving option at the TE position and rookie TE Joel Dressen has great receiving skills and was a steal in the 6th round.
The Jets defense features possibly the best DE duo in the league. RE John Abraham is a relentless pass-rusher who is a terror for QBs. He was putting up a Defensive Player of the Year caliber season before he got injured and missed the last 4 games of the year. LE Shaun Ellis is a powerful end who can anchor against the run and overpower a lot of OTs. But he is not a pure power end, as he can get to the QB and has double-digit sacks two seasons in a row. Having those two starting gives the Jets a great pass-rush and their strength on defense begins there. The Jets also are solid at DT. Dewayne Robertson is an up-and-coming playmaker who is quickly becoming one of the league’s best DTs because of his extraordinary blend of size and athleticism. However, the team lost it’s other starting DT, Josh Ferguson. Ferguson was an important run stuffer and he will not be easy to replace. James Reed is currently expected to start and he will not even come close to being the run-stuffer Ferguson was. Reed does have great range for a DT and will be active, but he can get pushed around by most OGs. Rookie Sione Pouha has good size and would be a good option to replace Ferguson but he doesn’t appear to be ready to start right away.
Rookie Jonathan Vilma gave the Jets defense a lot to get excited about last year in his Defensive Rookie of the Year campaign. Vilma is a MLB who lives, eats and breathes football and his instincts are second to none. He is also a good athlete with sideline-to-sideline range and he has a great feel for coverage already. It seems apparent he will be a star in this league for some time. Eric Barton is a very solid OLB who hits hard and is very productive. He gets to the HB a lot in the backfield and is an excellent open field tackler. OLB Victor Hobson has to be considered the weak link in their linebacker unit but he does have good size and strength and does a good job filling against the run. The only major criticism of their LBs is that they lack depth.
The Jets did a good job of improving their situation at CB. They signed Ty Law, who is one of the league’s elite CBs when healthy, to a big deal. While he is coming off a major injury and he might never be his old self, if he does return to his pro-bowl form, it would give the Jets a huge boost. The Jets also stole CB Justin Miller, an athletic playmaking CB, in the second round. They still have David Barrett, a fundamentally sound CB who does a good job in every part of the game except when he’s asked turn and run, which is a major weakness for him. The team also some other good young CBs in Pete Hunter and Derrick Strait, so depth is not a problem at the CB position.
The Jets will need to find a capable SS on their roster. Oliver Celestin, who is the favorite to start, is a physical player who hits hard, but he is a liability in coverage and is undersized for a hard-hitting SS who likes to play in the box. Another option is rookie SS Andre Maddox, but he is very similar to Celestin. Rookie FS Kerry Rhodes could also find himself playing because he has good speed and cover skills. Their starting FS, Erik Coleman, was a 5th round pick last year but he started all year and recorded 88 tackles and 4 interceptions. Coleman lacks in size, athleticism and speed, but he plays very smart, always takes good angles and is physical in nature, which makes him a solid starting FS.
On special teams, the good news is they have a new kicker. After Doug Brien’s missed kicks lost the Jets a playoff game against Pittsburgh, it was obvious a new kicker would be coming in. The Jets, who were in a competition with the Vikings to get their hands on K Mike Nugent, made a deal with the Raiders to give themselves a higher 2nd round pick than the Raiders and picked the great kicker prospect. The team lost punt returner Santana Moss, but they drafted Justin Miller, who will be an exciting return man.
The Jets showed a lot last year, finishing 10-6 in the highly competitive AFC, and then beating the 12-4 Chargers in the playoffs and coming within a missed field goal of beating the 15-1 Pittsburgh Steelers. The Jets bring back most of the same players and should continue to be a strong team. But the players they did lose made underestimated contributions last year and the team will feel the losses of McKenzie and Ferguson. The team also has a much tougher schedule this year than the last and they will have to come up with another strong year and a playoff appearance to prove themselves.

Houses on my wrists. Whips on Fists. Your budget on my neck. Your spouse on my -.
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Joined: 27 Jan 2005
Posts: 527
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2005 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with you 110%.
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Joined: 17 Jan 2005
Posts: 732
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 10:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

really good except the fact that pete hunter got released. i dont know when u wrote this seeing how my computer caught a virus and i couldnt use it,but this is very impressive.
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
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Location: Havre, Montana
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2005 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ray Mickens has also been released.

Another nice job Big E.
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