Another loss. Another loss vent. Check back later this week when we will dive a little deeper into all of the New York Jets problems that have led them to this 3-6 record…
When you looked at the New York Jets schedule prior to this season, you probably thought they would be 5-4 or around there at this point, at least I did. It was not crazy to think they could lose to Seattle, Pittsburgh, Kansas City or Arizona but you hoped they would be competitive and steal one or two of them. At a minimum, they should be a team who was able to beat a very average Bengals and Dolphins team to stay above .500. They have not been able to do that and they were not even competitive when playing the “good” teams on their schedule.
This type of season can spiral out of control fast. The Jets are already deep into that spiral. They are approaching their second quarterback benching of the season. Their alleged leaders on defense, either aren’t trying or are skipping team meetings and free cake. The fanbase has fully turned on the Head Coach and have reached the point on offense where all hopes are being pinned to a 4th round quarterback who has never played meaningful snaps before. Injuries are piling up. Offseason decisions are looking uglier and uglier by the day.
The problems with this team are complex in a way and very simple in another. The Jets have developed a culture of mediocrity, impatience and losing, which they cannot break out of. Fixing those issues and building sustainable success is going to be a process. Yet, more simply the Jets are not 5-4 and in the middle of the AFC playoff race right now because they have the worst quarterback in the NFL by a wide margin. You cannot overcome quarterback play that bad unless you have elite coaching, which the Jets do not.
On a scale of 1-10 of being terrible, Ryan Fitzpatrick is a 10 right now. Todd Bowles, regressing from year two, and struggling to maintain control of a sinking ship, is about a 7 or 8. If Fitzpatrick was even a 7 or 8, the Jets have probably would have won two more games. If Bowles was a 4 or 5, the Jets have probably would have won two more games. You can’t overcome the worst quarterback in the NFL and a below average coach.
Fitzpatrick is done here and should be put on the IR tomorrow. Every day Bowles stays with him, he loses more credibility even with the most patient of fans, of which I consider myself one. He is 13-12 in 25 games with Ryan ‘Freakin Fitzpatrick at QB, it isn’t time to fire him yet. Bowles can salvage some respect this season by finishing 3-4 or 4-3 and rolling out one of the Jets young quarterbacks, while further discipling or benching players acting out of line.
Forget the one quarter benching. Fine Muhammad Wilkerson. Fine Sheldon Richardson. Make them inactive. Richardson wants a big contract he is never going to get from the Jets, hurt his ability to get one from somebody else by limiting the tape he can put out the rest of the year. Sit these guys down if they are going to disrespect you and the team. If Darrelle Revis goes back to loafing. Bench him. Lose with your young and hungry guys, not players who won’t be here for the long haul.
Go roll out Bryce Petty, Leonard Williams, Jarvis Jenkins, Juston Burris along with players like Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson and Rontez Miles. Those guys will compete and losses with them out there are easier to stomach than players who are difficult to root for at this point.
Todd Bowles deserves all the criticism he is receiving. Ryan Fitzpatrick deserves to never play a snap here again. Mike Maccagnan has a huge INC as a grade so far. There is no clear evaluation after 25 games if he can do the job or not, not without any of this year’s top 5 picks contributing and with a Fitzpatrick, Wilkerson and Revis contract on his resume, two of which he blinked at in the final seconds of negotiations.
Shame on Mo Wilkerson for mailing it in after getting paid. This writer, among many others, were happy to see him rewarded but skeptical of the football sense of paying him a long term deal. None of us ever thought the contract wouldn’t work for effort and leadership reasons but only because of poor resource allocation. Instead, Wilkerson is joining Revis and Richardson in poisoning a young defense.
Jets fans have a right to vent this week because their “money” players have failed them, both on and off the field.
Photo Credit: NewYorkJets.com