The TOJ Roundtable is back. Make sure to give everybody a follow on Twitter and to let us know your opinion down in the comment section below!
What New York Jets addition this offseason will turn out to be their most overrated move/the biggest let down?
Joe Caporoso – While I think Matt Forte will be a significant addition to the Jets offense and show that he has enough in the tank to be a consistent contributor, his overall output may let some down. This is because the Jets running back situation will be much more of a 1A/1B situation with Bilal Powell than some seem to expect. Forte is not here to compile 25 touches per game. He is here to split the workload with Powell and to a lesser extent Khiry Robinson, so he can stay fresh and healthy down the stretch. In a perfect world, Forte should be receiving 12-15 carries per game, along with seeing 4-6 targets. Powell’s involvement will likely closely mirror that, depending on the match-up and flow of the game, with Robinson chipping in a series or two per half along with getting involved in short yardage situations.
Can Matt Forte hit 1,000 yards rushing? Probably not. It doesn’t mean he will not be a quality addition, particularly if he hauls in 50+ receptions and breaks out a few timely big games. Yet, to expect him to have a Brandon Marshall like impact on the offense is unrealistic. Don’t sleep on how much the Jets value Powell to their offense and how integrated he will be on a weekly basis.
Joe Malfa – I don’t know why, but I just have this bad gut feeling about Matt Forte not living up to expectations. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love the pickup because he can take the offense to the next level if he’s the Matt Forte we are all familiar with. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that the now 30-year-old who has had injury issues in the past will be in top form.
If he ends up missing a few games with nagging injuries, it will clearly be a let down of an acquisition, but it is quite possible for him to be a let down even if fully healthy. Why is that? Like I said, if he’s healthy, I think he can put up big numbers and help the offense in a big way, but don’t rule out the possibility of Bilal Powell and Khiry Robinson exceeding expectations. They are both significantly underrated, and if they get rolling, Forte could see his role diminish.
Robinson could be appropriately nicknamed “Chris Ivory 2.0” for the way he runs. He didn’t see the field much during his three year stint in the Big Easy, buried under Mark Ingram, Pierre Thomas, Darren Sproles, and Chris Ivory on the depth chart, but he made the most of his playing time. He had 186 carries for 766 yards and 8 TDs over the course of three years, which amounts to an impressive YPC average of 4.1. It is yet to be seen how much Gailey will use him and in what role, but he is capable of shouldering the load and taking touches away from Forte.
We all know what we have in Bilal Powell, and you can almost call him a poor man’s Matt Forte. He can tote the ball effectively, and he can play a major role in the passing game on 3rd down. Again, I don’t know how Gailey is going to balance his three backs, but Powell has been in the system for a year and has proven himself. There may be drives where you see him out there instead of Forte in passing situations.
I hope Forte can recapture his old form and stay healthy throughout the season. If he is clicking on all cylinders, the offense could be lethal, but I think we may be in for a let down.
Kevin Zielaznicki – After long time left tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson decided to retire, General Manager Mike Maccagnan acted quickly and acquired four time Pro Bowler Ryan Clady from the Denver Broncos. After being drafted by the Broncos in the first round back in 2008, Clady had a phenomenal rookie season and was seen by many as one of the top offensive lineman in the NFL. Unfortunately for Clady, he never fulfilled his potential as his career has been riddled with injuries and that was one of the key reasons on why the Broncos traded him. We would all love if Clady could stay healthy and return to the type of player that earned him All-Pro recognition but with his injury history, it isn’t likely. Many Jets fans don’t seem to be worried about the offensive line due to the Clady acquisition, but I would recommend that they keep their hopes down as we may be in for a let down.
John Hargaden – Going into the 2016 I believe a player that may not live up to expectations is LT Ryan Clady. The D’Brick retirement news was a bit of a surprise to us fans but it seems like Mike Maccagnan and company knew that it might happen. When looking at the remaining market and what the Jets had on their roster they knew someone else needed to be brought in. Clady is a decent name to bring in and at the time he was the best option out there. Injuries have plagued Clady over the past few years. The question must be asked, what will we see from Clady? Will we see the Pro Bowl LT or will we see a guy that has only played a handful of games over the past few seasons. Only time will tell.
Alex Kaczynski – I think the biggest let down of the offseason could be Ryan Clady if he does not say healthy and on the field. A player who missed the entire 2015 season with an ACL tear. He has something to prove this season after being traded from the Broncos. Clady has a problem with staying healthy, having two major surgeries in three years and has missed 30 of the past 48 games. If he ends up going down this year, the depth at O-Line is not very promising. As much as I hope that he is able to stay on the field, I do have that gut feeling he may miss some games this season, but hopefully nothing major. The success of Forte and whomever is QB would hinder on Clady’s overall performance. He would definitely be the biggest letdown of the year if he goes down again this year. One the bright side, only a 5th round pick was traded for him so in my opinion he is worth the risk.
David Aitken – The majority of free agent additions have been somewhat low key outside of Matt Forte (who should be solid value), so I’ll focus on a rookie whose expectations have been blown way out of proportion by some. When the Jets added Charone Peake with their last pick, there was excitement for good reason. The former Clemson wide receiver was projected to go as highly as round three during the pre-draft process and has the skill set of a player who could fill a niche instantly in the Jets offense. Given Devin Smith will likely be rehabbing into the start of the season, there is an opportunity for a player that can stretch the field to see meaningful snaps out of the gate. Looking at the factors of pre-draft projection and current opportunity, it is easy to see how hype could build. But it is wise to temper those expectations, as Peake still has a long ways to go to even make the roster. As a seventh round pick, the Jets do not have much invested in Peake. He’ll be competing for a roster spot with UDFAs Jalin Marshall and Robby Anderson, and Peake will get no favoritism as a could-have-been third rounder. This is key because one of the main expected reasons for Peake’s slide down the board is injury history. His last year at Clemson was his only truly productive season, with nagging injuries and a serious ACL tear preventing him from staying on the field. If Peake is unfortunate enough to miss camp time due to health issues, it’ll be a huge blow to his chances to even make the roster.
There is no doubt that Peake is a very talented player. He was a five-star recruit at a university that is getting a reputation for creating excellent pro receivers, and the Jets depth at wide receiver isn’t strong past the two stars. But 7th round instant success stories are very rare, and even as “third round value,” actual third round picks can often take time to settle as well.
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