ESPN released their first edition of NFL Power Rankings today, which always provides an interesting talking point. The New York Jets came in a somewhat surprisingly low seventh place, here is a look at the top ten –
- Green Bay
- New England
- New Orleans
- New York Jets
- San Diego
Also of note, the Giants came in 11th place, the Dolphins 24th, and the Bills 31st.
I think the general consensus around the league is that the Jets haven’t got better this off-season and you can make a fair argument for that. We haven’t seen Plaxico Burress on the field yet or Derrick Mason work with Mark Sanchez in a real game. Their passing game is a work in progress, although hasn’t it been the past two years? They still have the tools to execute the Ground and Pound, which carried them to the AFC Championship Game in 2009 and 2010.
Let the entire league pick New England as the AFC Super Bowl favorite, they did it last year and we saw how that turned out in the playoffs. Atlanta hasn’t won a playoff game in the Matt Ryan era, which has to count for something. Philadelphia is receiving the expected hype from a big off-season and most people expect a New Orleans bounce-back this year after an ugly first round playoff exit.
According to these rankings, the Jets are the third best team in the AFC. It is time for them to find a way to win a division title by being consistent enough in the regular season to finish ahead of the Patriots. Regardless of recent history, the Jets need to host playoff games and make their road to the Super Bowl easier.