The New York Jets have made many additions to their offensive skill positions this offseason. To be exact, they have added two quarterbacks (Vick, Boyd), five receivers (Decker, Ford, Saunders, Evans, Enunwa), two running backs (Johnson, Richardson) and one tight end (Amaro). Let’s look through some of their formations from 2013 and how they can be utilized with the new additions.
Also check out myself, Connor Rogers and Chris Nimbley featured on the Jets official website talking about the team’s quarterback battle. We have more segments in the coming days discussing the rest of the roster, so stay tuned. A big thanks to Eric Allen and the Jets organization for interviewing us…
We have discussed this formation previously around the time the Jets added Chris Johnson. It was a popular one for Marty Mornhinweg in passing situations, particularly on third downs. Below, it is Tommy Bohanon and Bilal Powell, basically lined up as wings, Kellen Winslow Jr in the slot as a flexed tight end. Finally, Santonio Holmes and Stephen Hill are on the outside.
In 2014? Chris Johnson could replace Bohanon, while Winslow Jr could be replaced by Jace Amaro, who did all his damage in college lined up in a very similar spot. On the outside, Eric Decker is going to be in one spot, while Jeremy Kerley, Hill, David Nelson, Jeff Cumberland, Shaq Evans or Jalen Saunders could be on the other outside spot. It also isn’t out of the question to see Kerley or Saunders in one of the backfield spots or in the slot position. If I had to guess today, I’d say you’d see Johnson and Powell as the wings, Amaro in the slot and Decker/Kerley on the outside.
We know Marty loves those bunches, particularly near the redzone. Below, Nelson is lined up at running back, Winslow is backside and tight to the set. On the frontside, Cumberland is the point man on the bunch with Kerley on the inside and Clyde Gates (guh) on the outside.
The Jets tried to flare Nelson out to the flat here and hit him on a quick swing, which isn’t really suited to his skill set. A player like Saunders or Johnson would be a better fit there, Amaro is a logical replacement for Winslow Jr and Decker could be swapped in as an immense upgrade for Gates. The versatility of Amaro also makes him a reasonable option in the backfield.
Below the Jets have Powell as the single back, Cumberland backside at tight end, Winslow as the move tight end in the slot, Nelson outside of him and Holmes all the way on the outside.
When looking through many of the Jets formations, it is hard to not see Amaro replacing Winslow Jr in many formations, including this one. The Jets could still use a a solid blocking in-line tight end, which Cumberland is really miscast as. He is at his best when split out away from the formation, maybe Zach Sudfeld could flash in that role this summer but he hasn’t proven to be that type of player yet. Hypothetically if the Jets had a different blocking tight end backside, they could split Cumberland out where Holmes is, put Decker in the slot, and Amaro in Winslow’s spot. This would allow them to come out showing a heavy look and then shift pre-snap to a more spread formation that allows them to take advantage of Cumberland and Amaro’s athleticism.
On the other end of the spectrum, they could use Stephen Hill in the H-Back type role that Winslow plays here (which Hill did multiple times last season), put Decker outside, Kerley in the slot and have Cumberland or Amaro backside in a three point stance to load up on speed.
A highly used and relatively traditional spread look from the Jets is shown below, with Chris Ivory as the single back, Cumberland as the in-line tight end, Kerley in the slot and Nelson/Holmes on the outside.
It will be interesting to see how the Jets approach a look like this in 2014. Do they put Amaro in the slot and Kerley/Decker on the outside, while Cumberland remains the in-line tight end? Do they put Amaro as the in-line tight end, Cumberland/Decker outside and keep Kerley in the slot? Do they simply swap out Holmes with Decker? Is Nelson swapped out for a guy like Saunders or Evans if they are playing well? There is a good chance you will see all these possibilities at some point but the real question is what becomes the team’s go to personnel in a commonly used formation like this.
Final one for the day, with Bohanon as the single back, Hill in the slot, Cumberland in the slot out to the right as the H-Back, Kerley as the outside receiver but tight to the set with Cumberland. Backside? Michael Campbell…
Needless to say, when seeing personnel groupings like this, you understand why the Jets have added ten (and counting) skill position players this offseason. The days of Bohanon being the single back here are gone, whether he is replaced by Ivory, Powell, Johnson or maybe even Richardson. Campbell won’t make the roster this season and could be replaced by a number of options, including Saunders if the Jets were looking for speed backside on this play. Hill in the slot is intriguing here and he spent more time there than many think. However, as a bigger target Amaro or maybe Quincy Enunwa (long shot as a 6th rounder but you never know) could push for some reps in these type of situations. Frontside, Decker is likely to be on the field for just about every play, so if the Jets wanted a more, pure speed receiver backside like Saunders, then Decker could fill in Kerley’s spot.