New York Jets: The Jump Start

BUFFALO, NY - DECEMBER 09: Sam Darnold #14 of the New York Jets throws in the second quarter during NFL game action against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field on December 9, 2018 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

Well, Jets fans, I know we have been quiet but a lot has been going on over here. We have been getting all of the offseason information set up and here is what is going on:

The Jets fired Mike Maccagnan (finally) and in turn hired Joe Douglas, former VP of Eagles Personnel to be the new GM. And to just bring everything full circle, the Jets earlier in the season named Adam Gase of the Miami Dolphins new head coach in place of Todd Bowles who went on to be DC for Bruce Arians down in Tampa Bay.

They also added Gregg Williams for DC, nabbed Jim Bob Cooter from the Lions and Adam Gase brought in his former OC to help with the offense.

The Jets then signed Le’Veon Bell, C.J Mosley, Chandler Catanzaro, Jamison Crowder, Brian Poole, Josh Bellamy, Daniel Brown, Ty Montgomery, and Trevor Siemian.  They had also traded for former Raider Kelechi Osemele for draft picks for the past draft. They also drafted a lot of players to bolster the O-Line.

Wow, the Jets did a lot. #Overhaul

But all of this was done on the assumption that Sam Darnold will make the jump from year one to year two like Goff, Wentz, and Mahomes did. The hope is that he will just go ballistic and run the AFC East (Yeah, I know Brady is still there but I had to make sure you understand how serious this is).

With an offensive minded coach who coached some great players to stardom, arguably a top 5/solid top 10 (he sits outside the top 5 at #6, #7 in most cases so this will have to do) running Back, a dangerously fast slot route running WR core in Crowder and Enunwa, a speedster deep ball threat outside the numbers with Anderson, an O-Line that has changes to it in a positive way and with a Defensive Coordinator that is THE master in exotic packages throwing every spitball and snot rocket at him, there is no way Sam should fail.  He has every type of security blanket that a new QB could want and possibly could make Tom Brady jealous (see Gronk Leaving).

But let’s break it down.

The Current Situation:

The Jets signed RB Le’ Veon Bell and LB C.J. Mosley in a joining move to extract some star power from other teams and add it to this depleted roster. I added Mosley in here simply because of the potential DC exotic packages.

With Mosley given full command, Sam needs to talk to him a lot to see how leaders on the other side of the ball would handle certain situations and these have to be in-depth discussions.

Flip the script with the addition of Bell, Sam can now have a true honest-to-God cowbell that he can depend on if his life is in danger. hopefully preventing some of last year’s unfortunate situations: 37 sacks.

Darnold can throw it to Bell for the check-down or hand the ball off. This is all thanks in part to Bell’s running style. If Darnold’s life is in danger, like I said, he can flip the ball out to grab a few extra yards from him. So, with Bell and Powell in the backfield, I feel comfortable Darnold can get away with a lot more of the run game and keep away.

The Jets also added in WR Jamison Crowder from the Redskins in a lateral move to replace WR Jermaine Kearse. While Kearse had been great for the Jets, he seemed to be lacking in the pop department when it comes to his breakaways and cut moves. In his first season in the green and white, he set record highs across the board from receptions to yardage. But in his last year campaign, he recorded lows which he had not seen since his stint with the Seahawks, partly to do with Enunwa returning from injury & partly due to a rookie QB. However, this shouldn’t be his excuse since Anderson was able to haul in 50 of his 94 targets, and Enunwa was able to haul in 38 of his 68 targets. All for more yardage than Kearse, so there is no excuse.

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Now, enter Crowder. He has been a phenomenal slot receiver every year except for last year when it was revolving door of QBs in Washington. He never was able to break the 1k mark but got close very multiple times, so with the right push he can get over the hump. He can be the solid slot receiver that Sam can depend on should he need to let the ball go.  Competing with Enunwa or in unison with him, depending on how Gase will deploy them, Crowder can wreck defense with his speed.

The final key piece to Sam’s jump will be his attention from Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams and his exotic defensive plays. For Sam to truly make the jump, he has to be a blitz on every down from every which way. The thought here is that Sam has to become comfortable in the pocket under pressure, there will be plays he has to make while on the run and others that he has to show patience and wait out the storm to go and get his man down the field.

If Sam wants to jump he has to trust his O-Line which has been improved thank to the KO trade with Oakland and removing Spencer Long, who managed to hurt himself and Sam last season. But the trust has to be there. Trust that they will hold out while Sam waits those milliseconds before he slings it down the field to Robby, Enunwa or Crowder for the long reception or TD.

The flip of that is Gregg Williams needs to bring new material to Sam every week so he can see how blitz can be. This is so when he sees this in game time situations, he is not tripped up. He needs to be hammered with enough exotic plays that he can make adjustments on the fly in certain cases and not freeze up in the majority of cases.

The Break Down:

So let’s break it down. The Jets need Le’Veon Bell to help Sam achieve the offensive level behind an upgraded offensive Line. This, surrounded by one of the fastest receiving corps in the NFL, thanks to Robby in part, and with a tight end that could be top 5 in the NFL with Gronk out of business for good.

It is a tall order but at least the defense can help Sam while he finds his footing because, on the defense side of the ball, there is Leonard Williams, Quinnen Williams, Henry Anderson (Jets Sack Leader*), and Steve McLendon/Nathan Shepard toting the line. C.J. Mosley (SecDef), Avery Williamson, Brandon Copeland, Jamey Mosley, Neville Hewitt, Jordan Jenkins (Jets Sack Leader*), Blake Cashman, and Anthony Wint will be our Linebackers protecting the middle of the field/putting opposing QB on their tails in the next tier. Trumaine Johnson, Brian Poole, Perry Nickerson, and Darryl Roberts playing the secondary will be an interesting ploy since the loss of Morris Claiborne but when you have Mr. Pro Bowl/Mr. Second team All-Pro/ Mr. Pro Bowl Defensive MVP Jamal Adams and Marcus “Money” Maye in the safety slot being backed up by Doug Middleton and Rontez Miles, I can’t help but be happy and excited.

I mean look at this defense, it is lacking in the CB department but everywhere else is stacked and can make up the difference. Hell, even Jamal Adams can make up half the defense with how many plays he is in, we haven’t had such a dominant player like that since Future HoFer Darrelle Revis. If Adams can be like Revis or even better than Mr. Lockdown was, then the Jets can have a bright future.

Sam and Le’Veon on the offense and Jamal and Mosley on the Defensive side of the ball.  Oh Yeah in the words of Jamal Adams, “Lets go get this money.”


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