With the league year set to begin and the New York Jets armed with cap space, ALOT of Jets fans are clamoring for the front office to throw money at the issues plaguing this team. Understand that this isn’t a one year fix, and I tend to laugh at people who simultaneously say “go pay Mike Glennon $18 million per, he’s young” and “we need to be careful about not just throwing money at mediocre players.”
The irony seems to be lost on some folks, and then its made even worse when the same fans say they’d prefer Glennon over Tyrod Taylor because of his age (spoiler alert: they’re the same age). Again, irony. Must be the whole #QuarterbackingWhileWhite thing. Or, and this is a conversation I’ve had with friends on numerous conversations, it is very possible that fans, like front offices, like their quarterbacks a certain way. If all things were equal, Mike Glennon wouldn’t see more money on the market than Taylor, Colin Kaepernick, Brian Hoyer, or Jay Cutler. Yet somehow he’s staring at an $18 million dollar payday.
With that price tag, you can only hope the Jets are not the one writing the check. This is a team that is not built to spend $18M (or even $12-14M) on a mediocre QB that hasn’t started in two years. Now, does this mean they should sit out the QB market entirely? No. They should take a swing at Tyrod Taylor because he’s the best QB available via free agency or even via trade (yes, better than Jimmy Garropolo and even better than Kirk Cousins).
This isn’t an overly complicated thing; if the Jets get a chance to sign Taylor, then you sign him as a way to both improve your team and weaken a division rival. He isn’t a bad quarterback by any stretch of the imagination and he will buy you time until Christian Hackenberg is ready. It also allows your young wide receivers to actually see what its like to play with a good quarterback, as oppose to the bearded thief that took snaps last year. Its also very likely that he is priced out of what they should spend at quarterback, but if he falls to that $12-15M range it would make 9,135 times more sense to sign him than to go all Brock-Osweiler like on Mike Glennon. Taylor buys you time, and he allows you to be competitive while still being young enough to potentially being your franchise guy. Odds are probably slim that he’s the guy they sign.
This is why Jets fans need to learn to appreciate Brian Hoyer and what he would represent. He is more of a game manager than Ryan Fitzpatrick ever was, and he would again buy you time and force you to not play Hackenberg until he is ready. This also allows you to have a veteran presence for your younger players. He is better than Fitzpatrick, he was better last year, and he would come very cheap.
The price tag accompanying him would allow you to round out your roster in a much better way than if you spent what it’d cost you to get a guy like Cousins or Romo. He would’ve made more sense last year too, as both the stop gap and a season salvager because his interception rate historically isn’t even close to Fitzpatrick’s. His ebbs and flows just aren’t as drastic. Colin Kaepernick would make sense as well on a one year deal to try and reestablish his value on the market, but you have to weigh if he is worth the potential headache he would cause with the fanbase. He’d be an inexpensive option though, which is really all the Jets are looking for outside of Tyrod Taylor. The Christian Hackenberg Equation hovers over the franchise like a dark cloud because while everyone wants him to be the guy no one knows if he will be despite the franchise operating like he will be.
Don’t become upset when you see the team linked to few of the big name free agents. I think its very unlikely that the Jets take a swing at guys like Stephon Gilmore (although they should because he’s young and a ball hawk), or guys like Trumaine Johnson (who is reportedly available via trade). Johnson in particular isn’t the guy that is going to rebuild this team. It will be guys like Gavin Escobar, Tony Jefferson, Dre Kirkpatrick, Kelvin Beachum, and the aforementioned Taylor or Hoyer.
This isn’t the free agent class that requires you to spend the treasure chest of cash you have for quick fixes. Make smart signings, don’t bid against yourself, and rebuild some credibility because Mike Maccagnan has been taken to the cleaners during his recent negotiations. Sure, there were outs built in to the contracts, but lets not pretend like the Darrelle Revis and Ryan Fitzpatrick contracts in particular weren’t god awful deals. I jokingly praise John Idzik alot, but the guy got a 1st and a 4th for Revis coming off of a torn ACL and was hesitant to pay Muhammed Wilkerson. Sometimes the best moves are the ones you don’t make, by the way. I say that to say don’t panic. Moves will be made. No Super Bowl is won in March. You can tell by how much the odds will change at BetOnline.ag between now and September. And no matter what New England does Tom Brady is still there. Don’t panic, Jets fans.
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