Grading New York Jets General Manager John Idzik

TOJ Staff Writer Dalbin Osorio grades New York Jets General Manager John Idzik

If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I’ve continued to lament that a GM needs more than a year and a half to fully implement their plan on a team. However, there’s been incessant talk on Jets GM John Idzik after his press conference yesterday. So, I’m going to grade his drafts, free agent signings, and trades. Here is the scale: A (All-Pro/Quality Starter) equals 4 points, B (Adequate Starter) equals 3 points, C (Contributor) equals 2 points, D (Negative impact) equals 1 point, and F (no impact) equals 0 points. Feel free to chime in in the comments. Let’s get to it.

2013: D+

  • Dee Milliner: C (ended 2013 on high note, had 3 INTs and 15 pass breakups, landed on IR with  injury in 2014)
  • Sheldon Richardson: A (Defensive Rookie of The Year, headed towards Pro-Bowl season)
  • Geno Smith: C (ended 2013 on a high note, played well at times, incredibly inconsistent)
  • Brian Winters: D (ended 2013 on a high note, was terrible early this year before season-ending injury)
  • Oday Aboushi: C+ (has been an improvement overall over Winters since taking over)
  • William Campbell: F (Not on team)
  • Tommy Bohanon: D (wasn’t very good while active and was injured)

2014: F

  • Calvin Pryor: C (started out slow this year, but is gradually improving. Has had 3/7 good games)
  • Jace Amaro: B+ (32 receptions out of 39 targets and more than an adequate blocker)
  • Dexter McDougle: F (tore his ACL and is out for the year)
  • Jalen Saunders: F (cut after muffed punt)
  • Shaquelle Evans: F (on IR)
  • Dakota Dozier: F (has not played any meaningful snaps this year)
  • Jeremiah George: F (signed off the Jets practice squad, didn’t play a meaningful snap)
  • Brandon Dixon: F (signed off the Jets practice squad, didn’t play a meaningful snap)
  • Quincy Enunwa: F (signed to Jets practice squad, yet to be activated)
  • IK Enemkpali: D (flashed in preseason, signed to Jets practice squad)
  • Tahj Boyd: F (played poorly in preseason, cut)
  • Trevor Reilly: B (special teams contributor, played well at OLB while Barnes was out)

Draft Grade Through 24 games: D- (could go as high as C)

With 19 draft picks, Idzik and the Jets scouting department have hit on 7 contributors, contributors, to me, are anyone graded a C or better as I stated above. You can debate whether Geno Smith is a contributor or not, but I think the guy who led the league last year in 4th quarter comebacks and who just played his very best game of the season against New England 10 days ago has shown enough that he can be at worst, a serviceable backup. Trevor Reilly has been good on special teams and in sub packages. Jace Amaro has shown that he’s going to be a keeper. Sheldon Richardson is a stud and has improved on his rookie of the year campaign. Calvin Pryor is improving as well (touched on in this article by Michael O’Connor). Oday Aboushi has been an improvement over Brian Winters.

As of right now, Idzik has a 36% success rate in the draft. That number can change if Winters, McDougle, Dozier, Enemkpali, Enunwa, and Evans turn out to be contributors. If this does happen, then his success rate goes up to 63%, which would actually be incredibly high because it would average to about 4 contributors a draft class. As of right now, he’s finding approximately 2 per draft class on average. For comparison’s sake, I looked at San Francisco, Denver, Giants and Seattle. SF found 4 contributors (Kapernick, Smith, Culliver, Hunter) out of 17 draft choices (23% success rate) under Trent Baalke’s first two drafts. John Schneider found 9 contributors out of 18 draft picks in his first two years (50% success rate). John Elway found 8 contributors out of 16 draft picks in his first two years (50% success rate). Jerry Reese has the highest success rate out of these 4 team executives, as he was able to find 9 contributors out of 16 draft picks for a 56% success rate. Idzik’s first two drafts compare more to Trent Baalke’s first two drafts than Elway, Reese, or Schneider’s.

Free Agency/Trades

  • Mike Goodson: D (looked like contributor before injury and then was subsequently cut this offseason)
  • Willie Colon: C (too many penalties, played well last year, inconsistent this year)
  • Antwan Barnes: B (contributor on defense, played well in 1st action this year off IR)
  • David Garrard: F (didn’t bring much to the table, not re-signed)
  • Josh Cribbs: C (24.5 yards per KR and 12.4 yards per PR last year)
  • Ed Reed: D (stunted Antonio Allen’s growth at safety, played well towards the end)
  • Greg Salas: C+ (averaging 20 yards a reception this year and played well in spurts last year)
  • Zach Sudfeld: C (good depth signing, improving blocker)
  • Eric Decker: A (best WR the Jets have had since 2010, 31 Rec and 3 TDs)
  • Breno Giacomini: B (adequate replacement for Austin Howard at a fraction of the cost)
  • Jeremy Reeves: F (no impact)
  • Jacoby Ford: F (no impact)
  • David Nelson: D (contributed last year, but struggled tremendously this year)
  • Dimitri Patterson: F (worst Idzik signing)
  • Chris Johnson: C (averaging 4 yards per carry and has 2 scores, complaining about touches)
  • Jason Babin: C (good depth signing, and has outplayed Quinton Coples)
  • Phillip Adams: C (good depth signing, has played well in spurts)
  • Chris Ivory: A (playing like a top 5-7 RB this year, young, and inexpensive)
  • Percy Harvin: B (giving up a conditional 6th round pick to a WR with no guaranteed money left is a good move)

Free Agency Grade: C

Idzik has hit with Eric Decker, Chris Ivory, Breno Giacomini, and Percy Harvin. He also found contributors with Chris Johnson, Phillip Adams, Jason Babin, Zach Sudfeld, Greg Salas, Willie Colon, Antwan Barnes, and Josh Cribbs. He missed with Dmitri Patterson, Jacoby Ford, and Mike Goodson. David Nelson bottomed out this year, and Mike Goodson flashed some last year but then ultimately flamed out. The Percy Harvin and Ivory trades have been great moves, and they will most likely form the foundation of the Jets offense going forward, while Johnson has been a contributor, it wouldn’t surprise me if he’s cut in the offseason as he’s begun to complain about touches and I don’t think he lends himself to an environment trying to develop a QB. In any event, Johnson not playing out his contract would be a miss and lower Idzik’s grade long term.

What Does This Mean
Idzik, like the team he has built, has been uneven in his job performance. He has made some very good moves and he has some misses on his resume  He also gets credit for re-signing key contributors like Darrin Walls, Legar Douzable, and Jeremy Kerley. He has built this team to be better than the team he inherited, however. Geno Smith and Michael Vick are better QBs than Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow. Chris Ivory and Chris Johnson are better running backs than Shonn Greene. Eric Decker and Percy Harvin are better wide receivers than Santonio Holmes, Clyde Gates and those god forsaken receivers the Jets trotted out there during Sanchez’s last year as a starter. The defensive line is better. The linebackers are the same, if not better. It is better to have an ascending Amaro than a declining and injured Dustin Keller at tight end. The depth at certain positions is better too. His biggest test is going to be finding out who the team’s starting quarterback is. If Geno Smith had displayed some consistency, the Jets would be better than 1-7 and Idzik’s job wouldn’t be torn down as much. He’s had some misses and some hits, and some of his draft choices could still develop.

Keep in mind that the San Francisco 49ers, the most consistent contender the last 4 seasons, have one player left from their 2012 draft and that was a 6th rounder, Trent Baalke’s team was built through the draft, and Idzik is copying that blueprint much more than Seattle’s. Colin Kaepernick was more raw entering the league than Geno Smith was, and Baalke’s first draft is largely considered a developmental draft. Not every draft pick is going to hit, but you’d like to find contributors that help your team in each one. Idzik needs it improve upon that. One thing that does get overlooked is that Idzik has found two immediate starters (and impact players) in Amaro and Richardson in each draft. His drafts need to be improved, but it’s no different than Trent Baalke in San Francisco. San Francisco was able to weather that and create a consistent contender with sustainable winning. Idzik needs more time, as Baalke did. In regards to Seattle, they haven’t drafted an impact guy since Russell Wilson two years ago but winning masks that. The point is that Idzik needs time, just like every other GM, but if I had to give him a grade, it’d be an I for incomplete and inconsistent.

Author: Dalbin Osorio

Dalbin Osorio is a Case Planner for Graham-Windham, New York's oldest child welfare agency. He is, also, a student at the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College. Dalbin graduated from Monroe College with a degree in Business Administration. A 3 sport utility man in high school (think a mix of Jerome WIlliams, Brad Smith, and Jayson Nix), he joined TOJ in 2013.