Jets Fantasy Football Preview

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First a few updates:

1. Rex Ryan spoke today at a summer camp he was working and as usual had a few interesting things to say. First off, he stated that Vernon Gholston is his starter in place of Calvin Pace. I think this may be more of a PR move to boost the kid’s confidence and quell some questions about how he performed in OTAs. If Gholston struggles in pre-season, he could start the first series week one and then be subbed out for the rest of the game for Marques Murrell, Jason Trunsick, or somebody else. He still has to earn his reps. Ryan also commented about how confident he was in his group of receivers, and mentioned one unnamed player who he believed was going to turn some heads this year (I am thinking Chansi Stuckey, since he had such a strong mini-camp).

2. I advise everybody to check out (www.GreenRewind.com) Marty Schupak runs a great podcast over there and I actually will be on the program tonight, so if you want to hear my voice, go check out the web site and check out all of Marty’s past shows…all quality Jets material. I also added his link over on the side of the home page.

3. No news on Thomas Jones or Leon Washington….although Rex Ryan stated he expects both to be at the beginning of training camp (only 9 days away)…we’ll just have to see.

4. Another day…another Yankees win and hopefully another Boston loss tonight.

Jets Fantasy Football Preview

Who doesn’t play fantasy football these days? The Jets haven’t been a popular team in the fantasy world the past few years and that doesn’t look to change this season. However, that doesn’t mean there isn’t value on their roster. Let’s take a look:

Best Bets:

1. Jets Defense/Special Teams – The Jets are generally ranked as a top 7-10 defense in most fantasy outlooks. They were very good last year, creating a high amount of turnovers and scoring a handful of defensive touchdowns, and that shouldn’t change under Rex Ryan who will be more aggressive than Eric Mangini. Also, Leon Washington is a constant threat to return a kick for a touchdown which increases their value. They don’t have a dominant pass rusher but have playmakers in the secondary with Darrelle Revis, Kerry Rhodes, and Lito Sheppard, a dominant defensive lineman in Kris Jenkins and a deep, solid group of linebackers.

2. Dustin Keller – Since the Jets are thin at receiver and will be starting a young quarterback, Dustin Keller should be receiving plenty of looks this season. Keller already had 48 catches his rookie season, despite splitting playing time with Chris Baker and Bubba Franks, both of whom are now gone. He should also be their primary red-zone target because of his size and the difficulty he creates in terms of match-ups. Keller is a very good option as a starting tight end for your fantasy team, and should be good for 60-65 catches with 6-7 touchdowns.

Quality Starters:

1. Thomas Jones – It is unfair to expect Jones to match his monster 2008 season, which saw him rack up 1519 total yards with 15 touchdowns. However, he should still remain the 1,100+ yard back that he has been the past four seasons. Leon Washington and Shonn Greene will cut into his touches and maybe a few of his goal-line looks (especially in Greene’s case) but Jones will be the Jets primary ball carrier and they are going to be running the football alot, making him a solid #2 option at RB in most fantasy leagues.

2. Jerricho Cotchery – Cotchery has been a fantasy disappointment that last two seasons after breaking on the scene in 2006. Yet, he is the Jets unquestioned number one receiver in 2009 and should have more looks than he has ever seen in his career. Cotchery is probably out of place as a #1 but he will still be a productive player this season. You shouldn’t be concerned about his catches or yards, since he probably will be in the 80-85 catch/1100-1200 yard range, the real question is how many touchdowns will he score? His career high for a season is 6, which was 3 years ago. I am not sure he will top that this season, making him a #3 WR in most fantasy leagues.

Sleepers:

1. Leon Washington – It is hard to consider #29 a sleeper since has was a pro-bowler last season and is a big time playmaker, yet he doesn’t receive enough touches to be a fantasy starter. Hopefully, Brian Schottenheimer will include him more in the offense in 2009, making it worth having him as a spot starter/backup. Last year he had 783 offensive yards and 9 total touchdowns, you should expect a bump in those numbers this season.

2. David Clowney – While I think Chansi Stuckey will start opposite Jerricho Cotchery, Clowney has a better chance to provide more big plays and touchdowns. I am hoping Clowney can turn into Dedric Ward on the 1998 Jets, with his key long TD receptions and huge yards per catch average. Clowney is hit or miss this year but should be the Jets primary deep threat and could be worth a late round draft pick and a spot start if you are desperate.

Super-Sleepers:

1. Shonn Greene – The Jets #3 running back entering training camp but if Thomas Jones/Leon Washington have any type of extended holdouts, he could quickly see his reps climb up. Even if both players are around all summer, Greene should see some short yardage/goal-line/4th quarter touches. It remains to be seen exactly how many goal-line carries he will get, which will ultimately determine his fantasy value this season.

2. Brad Smith – Maybe the versatile Smith can put it all together in his fourth year at wide receiver. He has the size to be a weapon in the red-zone and also should see some carries on reverses and in the wildcat formation. I wouldn’t bank on him doing anything of fantasy value in 2009, but you never know.

Jets Highlight of the Day: Highlights from Dustin Keller’s rookie season in Green and White…great fantasy option at tight end in 2009.

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