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Today, we rank the 12 best players currently on the Jets roster. NO ROOKIES…only players who have played NFL snaps already. This is not their long term projection, just where they currently are at:
1 – Leonard Williams, Defensive End – Williams was the team MVP last year and looked more promising as a second year player than either Muhammad Wilkerson or Sheldon Richardson. The Jets are counting on him to be the face of the defense and a team leader, who regularly threatens for double digit sacks.
2 – Muhammad Wilkerson, Defensive End – Despite a down 2016, Wilkerson has still been a borderline All-Pro caliber player for most of his career. He is playing in 2017 to prove the Jets shouldn’t take the out in his contract, especially since they have a younger, potentially better version of him already on the roster.
3 – James Carpenter, Offensive Guard – Mike Maccagnan’s best free agent signing by a country mile. Carpenter has been the team’s best offensive lineman since signing here in 2015 and has not missed a game. He has played better football in New York than he ever did in Seattle, which is a credit to offensive line coach Steve Marshall.
4 – Sheldon Richardson, Defensive End – Oh hey, another defensive end! Richardson has been suspended or underperforming most of the past two years but during his first two years he looked…kind of like Leonard Williams looks now! It remains to be seen if he will make it through the season on the roster or if he is traded.
5 – Quincy Enunwa, Wide Receiver – A TOJ favorite. Enunwa has turned into a versatile playmaker who can line up at X, Z or H and find a way to contribute. He enters 2017 as the team’s top pass catcher and best skill position player.
6 – Bilal Powell, Running Back – Another TOJ favorite. Powell has been criminally underused during most of his time with the Jets. He is an explosive back who is terrific in the passing game. He has a good chance to be the team’s lead back this season.
7 – Brian Winters, Offensive Guard – After a rocky start, Winters has stabilized into a quality guard who rightly received a new contract this offseason. He joins James Carpenter to round out one of the few positions the Jets are above average at.
8 – Morris Claiborne, Cornerback – If healthy, a major if with Claiborne, he has the ability to demonstrate why he was a top ten pick in the NFL Draft. Last season he was very good, much better than any corner on the Jets, the only problem is that he played 7 games. Since 2012, Claiborne has not played in more than 11 games in a single season.
9 – Matt Forte, Running Back – Comically out of the place on the current roster. Forte had a few flashes last year but ultimately broke down and looked alarmingly like a plodder more times than not. The Jets will likely utilize him more in the passing game this season and as a complimentary back to Bilal Powell, instead of as a lead back.
10 – Robby Anderson, Wide Receiver – The UDFA was one of the few bright spots in the Jets 2016 season and should be slated for a starting role on the outside. Anderson is a pure vertical receiver with top end speed who still needs to round out his game and put on weight but the early signs are encouraging.
11 – Kelvin Beachum, Left Tackle – The Jets “biggest” free agent signing. If Beachun can be the player he was two years ago, he will be an upgrade over what Ryan Clady gave them last year. If he was the player he was last season, the Jets will be a looking for a new left tackle in 2018.
12 – Marcus Williams, Cornerback – Scoff all you want but who else deserves this spot? Williams was one of the team’s better defenders in 2015 and started out strong last season before struggling with injuries. He is far more proven than Juston Burris, Darron Lee, Brandon Shell, Deon Simon or any other player who’d be considered for this spot.
GM Who Acquired Players
- Maccagnan: 6
- Idzik: 4
- Tannenbaum: 2
Photo Credit: NewYorkJets.com