TJ Rosenthal is back with the No Huddle, today looking at five areas of the New York Jets that could be a cause for concern in 2012. Make sure to give TJ a follow on Twitter and keep an eye out for a few exciting interviews by him in the coming weeks -
As a lifelong New York Jets fan it’s hard to deny that there have been LONG stretches of years that have warranted seeing things through a glass half empty. The bright pockets of time for this organization have come in quick bunches thanks to the late 1960′s crew, some of the clubs from 1981-86, Bill Parcells, Herm Edwards, and Rex Ryan. The rest of the club’s fifty year history has essentially featured one harrowing crash on the runway after another. Especially in December.
History aside, we will soon be embarking upon a new Jet adventure. One that again will arrive for the die hard with excitement, eternal hope, paranoia, and of course, habitual doubt.
The Jet Report can envision 2012 heading in both directions. One that leads the club late into January with a shot at glory, and the other, well, yet another disappointment. Our personal goal for this season is to enjoy it with zero expectations. Despite the two near misses in 2009 and 2010 and a 2011 that contributed to helping springboard the other New York team to a world title.
In this week’s no huddle we approach five concepts whose success could collectively combine to catapult the Jets towards the Super Bowl. Knowing that they all should be approached with caution. After all, many of us still carry scars that forever force us to sleep with one eye open.
At all times.
1. The Rookies Will Have A Major Collective Impact In Year One -
Will they? Well we hope so. Then again, we always hope that draft picks blow up into legends and do so right out of the gates.
Coples, Davis, Hill and Co. will be used and much needed in spots, but demanding week in week out veteran type play from them is unfair. And unrealistic. How many rookies have become first team all pros in the last decade? Not as many combined as the Jets plan to put on the field this year all at once.
Let’s ease up on what we demand from this group and instead, enjoy the promise of individual break out moments and timely performances that we know these kids can give us.
2. Santonio Holmes Will Be Happy All Season -
Santonio Holmes is a great clutch player. Period. He makes big plays with the money on the line. His unhappiness last year should have never been confused and mixed in with his reactions. We all wasted so much time wondering why Holmes behaved the way he did and spent little time asking “how the hell did Holmes not see more balls last year?” Was it Schotty’s fault? Sanchez’s fault? Well who cares whose fault it was. Just give him damn the ball please (to quote another Jets WR). Even if this team runs 60 percent of the time.
If the Jets win games and run the ball, Holmes will be a good teammate and accept it. We truly believe that. Fail to get him the rock AND lose games? Why wouldn’t he get pissed off? Why shouldn’t he?
The Holmes happy meter will be a reasonable measuring stick regarding the entire happiness of the Jets situation. Just win baby. This guy didn’t come from the Super Bowl champion Steelers to win four games for the Jets in one season to then just run around like a silly decoy all day.
Let’s make everyone happy by letting him help win games like he can. Or by having a ground game that is so exceptional, he can collect his big paychecks without having to jump over safeties downfield to haul in bombs.
We can live with either one of those scenarios. So can Santonio Holmes.
3. The Jets Will Of Course Return To The Postseason -
Tell the Bills that. How many divisions send three teams to the playoffs? Not many. If you are thinking what we’re thinking (The Patriots are always in the playoffs when Tom Brady is healthy) then let’s make sure that the upstart buzz team Bills don’t finish with a better record or divisional record than the Jets do.
After you consider the Bills and the AFC East logjam, add the Ravens, Steelers, Bengals, Broncos, healthier Chiefs, and pissed off Chargers for starters into the equation and what you have is a crowded AFC wildcard race.
With little breathing room for third place teams to enjoy. Better stay ahead of Buffalo gentlemen.
Or else the road to the playoffs will grow quite slim and narrow.
4. The Jets safety situation has improved -
Provided that LaRon Landry is healthy well maybe it has. Of course the only photos of Landry’s biceps that we have been to find on Google to this point, are one’s of him in his Redskins gear. He better not be damaged goods.
Yeremiah Bell is poised to help out but he is 33. Sorry to bring that up folks.
On the younger side, Josh Bush is a late round pick. Give us his energy. Just don’t let us get bitten by his youthful over excitement on play action or pump fakes.
The Leonhard, Pool and Smith Experience were often times late to the party but when Jimmy was healthy, this unit was never an X’s and O’s meltdown. Except when it had to cover the tight end. Better to give up twenty yards at midfield than be toast downfield every week due to miscommunication though, right?
Eric Smith is back and healthy again but even when healthy, is limited as a cover guy. Bell, Landry and Smith. Let’s see a few series of plays with them this August first.
5. The Ground and Pound Is Set To Roll -
First of all, who is ground and who is pound? The Jets have walked away from the Ryan blueprint of a veteran RB leading the way for the rookies and the younghans in this latest version of the ground game. There is also no back with a bell cow track record statistically in this corps right now. Shonn Greene is the group’s only 1,000 yard rusher, having squeaked by in 2011 with 1054 yards after a non existent start into mid October. Everyone else (Joe McKnight, Terrance Ganaway, Bilal Powell) is unproven except for Tim Tebow who as a QB has rushed for 12 TD’s in two years.
The offensive line is coming off a rough year and has to gel once again. Plus, we have to see how Mark Sanchez looks. If he can keep defenses honest in the passing game then hey, this new ground and pound mentality can work. Like the new safeties though, we have to wait and see how it all comes together. The potential is there but potential and results don’t always meet together when asked to.
These “no huddle” keys may all work out just fine in 2012. It IS possible. Yet we have no idea to what extent they will be a success at this point in time. Patience and time will play a key part. It’s a long season. The coaches, players and fans better have to remember to let this all build naturally.
The potential is there.