(Photo Credit: Rich Graessle/Icon SMI)
The Jets got back to 8-8 to tie for second in the AFC East, but a distant second behind the 12-4 Patriots. The team wasn’t helped by an offense that finished fourth last in scoring (18.1 PPG) behind a passing offense that was anemic (183.2 YPG), finishing second last just behind the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and scoring just 13 passing TDs versus 12 rushing TDs. Overall though, one can’t help but note the Jets had some great wins over the top finishing Patriots (30-27) and the Saints (26-20). The rushing game finished sixth (134,9 YPG) in the league.
The defense was solid, finishing top five against the rush (88.2 YPG) but just twenty-second against the pass (246.7 YPG). The safety position will need to be addressed. The Jets could add another pass rusher too. With 24.2 points allowed per game (No. 19), the Jets may not post a winning record unless they can squeeze more offense from the passing game.
Quarterback Geno Smith had an admirable rookie season, finishing with 3,046 yards, 12 passing TDs and 6 rushing TDs. But, when you throw the ball just 443 times, and toss 21 interceptions, it’ll be difficult to lead a team to victory on a consistent basis. Indeed, compared to throwing the ball (57%), the Jets ran the ball almost as much, 358 times between Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell (43%). Neither served as a bell-cow for the team, splitting carries almost evenly, with Ivory rushing the ball 182 times and Powell rushing the ball 176 times. Offensive coordinator Marty Monhinweg never had a quarterback throw for more than 14 interceptions when he was the coordinator for the Eagles. Also, Smith will need to punch the ball into the end zone more than 20 times to keep his starting quarterback job. Despite playing behind an offensive line that was tied for fifth for most sacks allowed in the league at 47, Smith didn’t help matters holding the ball too long or scrambling when under the slightest of pressure. Depending on what the Jets do with their free agents will dictate what they do to address the offensive line.
Free agents include: TE Jeff Cumberland, TE Kellen Winslow, G Willie Colon, G VLadmir Ducosse, S Ed Reed, LB Calvin Pace, and, K Nick Folk. (For more free agents, see Jets depth chart here.)
Top-Positional Needs: G, S, LB, DE, TE, K