Every year, teams have players who exceed expectations in a big way. These are usually more commonly referred to as “Breakout Players.” The Jets, despite their underwhelming record, had a quite a few this season, and some of them seem to have great potential going forward. Here are the 2018 Top Jets breakout performers:
4. Austin Seferian-Jenkins
Austin Seferian-Jenkins best season came after a miraculous recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. Many believed his career was over and that he would fall off the radar. People assured that drugs and alcohol ruined the former second round draft pick’s career. However, he came back stronger than ever.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins celebrates a milestone — sober for a year https://t.co/DZ5DmE5XKV
— Rich Cimini (@RichCimini) January 20, 2018
Seferian-Jenkins reeled in a career high 50 passes for a career high 357 yards along with 3 touchdowns, despite beginning the season with a three-game suspension. Seferian-Jenkins finally gave the Jets a tight end to watch.
Jets’ tight ends combined for 26 receptions during the last two seasons. Seferian-Jenkins nearly doubled this number in just his first season with the Green and White. Assuming the Jets re-sign him, expect him to continue to become a bigger part of the offense.
3. Darron Lee
Darron Lee pulled off a quick turnaround during his sophomore season. After acquiring just 70 tackles and one sack during his rookie year, many were disappointed in the former first round pick. People saw him as a waste of athleticism and speed. However, the young linebacker would step it up in 2017.
After a slow start, Lee picked up the pace quickly. He ended the season with 94 tackles and three sacks, along with two forced fumbles. Lee also tripled his tackles-for-loss count this season, hitting nine.
2. Demario Davis
Demario Davis was arguably the best player on not only the Jets defense, but the entire team as well. Davis was brought back by the team in a trade with the Cleveland Browns, and man oh man did that pay off.
The Jets dealt former first-round pick Calvin Pryor to Cleveland in exchange for Demario Davis last year. Pryor is now a free agent. You could say the Jets got the better end of that deal.
Today's position: LBs. Demario Davis had 18.5 total tackles at/behind LOS among Jets 'backers, most since David Harris' 19.5 in 2013, and he played 1116 snaps, most among all Jets defenders since Harris' 1181 in 2010: https://t.co/IAGfNYcGWa pic.twitter.com/Z7F5j6wjkQ
— Randy Lange (@rlangejets) January 24, 2018
Davis had a team high 135 tackles and a team high five sacks. Both of those numbers were career highs for the 28 year old. Davis also had three passes defended. Davis’ is an unrestricted free agent this coming offseason and is a must-resign for Mike Maccagnan and company. Expect him leading the defense come 2018.
1. Robby Anderson
Robby Anderson, despite recently being arrested, showcased a great deal of talent in 2017. The second year receiver stood out as one of the Jets lone bright spots on offense. Anderson was the X-Factor this year for the Jets, making big plays happen left and right, and ultimately keeping the Jets competitive.
Anderson put up a monster statline during the 2017 season. He caught 63 passes for 941 yards and seven touchdowns. If Josh McCown had stayed healthy during the final stretch of the season, Anderson likely would’ve reached 1,000 yards.
Anderson only had 120 receiving yards on 14 catches while Bryce Petty was at the helm for the final four games of the season. With a new quarterback likely to step in during 2018, expect big things from Anderson next season.
Of course, other players had career years too, but these four caught my eyes the most. Players like Josh McCown and Steve McLendon had career years as well, but the four listed above shined the most. Expect big things from these four next season.
– James Cunningham is a staff writer for Full Press Coverage Jets and covers the New York Jets. Like and follow on Follow @nyjfansnation//platform.twitter.com/widgets.jsFollow @FPC_Jets//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js