1. Well it wasn’t a pretty week for the picks during Wild-Card Weekend. However, let’s get back on track on this week. Here are my full predictions from over at The Whistle and my countdown of the remaining Super Bowl contenders. I’m going with New Orleans (+8.5), New England (-7.5), San Francisco (PK), Denver (-9). Our office intern is a HUGE Panthers fan and had this brief rant to 49ers fans and Ric Flair (before being yelled at me at the :55 second mark).
2. Want to give a quick shout to Turn On The Knicks – Chris Celletti, Kevin Smith and Aaron Jacobs have been doing excellent work there all season and now it finally seems like the Knicks are waking up and we may have some enjoyable basketball the next few months. Check the site out and give those guys a follow.
3. Enjoyed this read on the Jets free agent options at quarterback. Personally, I think Henne and Hill are the best options. They are talented enough to push Geno Smith, would be comfortable in a backup role and should come at a fair price. One thing to remember about Mike Vick is that he and Marty Mornhinweg didn’t end on great terms in Philadelphia, so I wouldn’t bet on him being interested in the Jets. People continue to chatter about Mark Sanchez returning but it isn’t happening. He is more than likely to be cut before March 25th and will move on to a much needed new team and situation.
4. One thing Jets fans should remember is that mainstream sites will frequently underrate the team and players on the team because of the reaction/traffic they know it will bring. The best recent example was putting the Jets at #32 in pre-season Power Rankings at ESPN. A more recent example is Pro Football Focus giving their Defensive Rookie of the Year Award to Desmond Trufant over Sheldon Richardson, when their very own metrics say Richardson was clearly the superior player. Troll away.5. We are tabling discussion of Kenrick Ellis here. We are all wasting too much time talking and debating about a backup defensive tackle who plays 19 snaps per game. If they keep him, great let’s hope he keeps developing. If they trade him, the team will find a way to carry on…trust me.
6. Next Friday our New York Jets Beat Writer Power Rankings will make their triumphant return!
7. The 4 most popular names you will see associated with the Jets in mock drafts, at least for the next few weeks: Eric Ebron, Jace Amaro, Marquise Lee and Mike Evans. Personally, I’d prefer a tight end in the first round. There is excellent depth at receiver in this draft and a talented pool of free agents.
8. Many will disagree but my plan to improve the secondary in 2014 would be to go get safety TJ Ward from the Cleveland Browns in free agency and bump Antonio Allen into the starting line-up alongside him. I’d let Ed Reed walk. I’d bring Antonio Cromartie back on a near minimum deal and sign a mid-level free agent like Sam Shields. If you roll with a top four of Dee MIlliner, Cromartie, Shields, and Darrin Walls, the play should be more than adequate on the outside. Kyle Wilson is likely to retain his job in the slot and the Jets may add a mid or late round pick to the mix at corner as well.The Jets are overdue for a playmaker at safety who can help improve their always low turnover numbesr. Let’s stop citing the mediocre safeties they had despite having a great defense in 2009 and 2010 as well. The Jets have stayed average to below average at safety all five of Rex Ryan’s years and their defense has gradually got worse in each season. This is similar to how the Jets have been stubborn about not upgrading outside linebacker…just go improve a position that needs to be improved, especially when you have the means to do it.
Total Defense Ranking
- 2009 – 1st in the NFL
- 2010 – 3rd in the NFL
- 2011 – 5th in the NFL
- 2012 – 8th in the NFL
- 2013 – 11th in the NFL
Points Allowed Per Game
- 2009 – 14.8
- 2010 – 19.0
- 2011 – 22.7
- 2012 – 23.4
- 2013 – 24.2
9. Now that Rex has logged a full five seasons as the team’s coach. Here is his record versus each AFC East team over that time span:
- Buffalo Bills (7-3)
- Miami Dolphins (4-6)
- New England Patriots (3-7), (1-0 in postseason)
Overall Record: 14-16, 1-0 in the postseason
10. Three names Jets fans shouldn’t waste their time discussing: Jimmy Graham. Sammy Watkins. Johnny Manziel. Look for Watkins and Manziel to both be gone with the 7th or 8th pick at the absolute latest and I highly, highly doubt Graham leaves New Orleans.
11. It may be foolhardy to place too much faith in him but I think Mike Goodson is going to be a big factor on offense and special teams in 2014.
Playoff Record – Against The Spread (0-2-2), W/L (1-3)