New York Jets Arbitrary Rankings – Top 5 Teams

Joe Caporoso with the top five New York Jets teams of all time…

Welcome to a new weekly series at TOJ, where I am going to give completely arbitrary rankings of things related to the New York Jets. Today, we’ll cover the Jets top five teams (next week we’ll get the worst…last week, we got the top 5 jerseys to buy). 

First off, here is a more scientific answer:

I am not going to write about the Super Bowl team (which gets #1 by default) or the 1980’s teams because I didn’t get to watch them play. All that being said, my main takeaway from the highlights and stories about the 1980s Jets was that it must have been nice to have a consistently strong offensive team, complemented by a great pass rush. Look at all these damn points!

On to the top five…

5 -2009 – The top DVOA defense in the NFL. A bruising running game led by Thomas Jones and Shonn Greene before he had cement feet and Mark Sanchez throwing for 12 touchdowns to 20 interceptions in 15 starts. This team gets the benefit of me not including earlier decades because after a 3-0 start, they were kind of terrible all regular season, finishing 6-7 with the benefit of the Colts resting starters in week 16. Fortunately, they rallied to beat a soft Bengals team wild card weekend and then shock the Chargers in round two. THEY WERE UP 17-7 IN THE AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME. This team making the Super Bowl would have been…something because they were so middling from October through December. This was also peak Darrelle Revis when he easily should have been DPOY.

4 – 2002 – 4th in offensive DVOA! This was Chad Pennington’s signature season as he came off the bench to start 12 games, go 8-4, rack up 22 touchdowns to only 6 interceptions. The Jets were a damn buzzsaw with him right up through throttling Peyton Manning and the Colts 41-0 at home in the playoffs….yes, the Jets had a home playoff game. It all came crashing down in the second half of the divisional around in Oakland but this season was a hell of a ride.

3 – 2004 – An often forgot Jets team that was extremely well rounded and just flat out #good. They finished 4th in overall DVOA, 4th in offensive DVOA and 14th in defensive DVOA. Curtis Martin had a banner season, they ripped off a 5-0 start and if not for a timid Herman Edwards, a choking Doug Brien and a pouty John Abraham would have been in the AFC Championship Game against New England. This team was sneaky fast on offense with Santana Moss, Justin McCariens (before he got #bad) and LaMont Jordan backing up Martin at running back.

2 – 2010 – One of those rare years where everyone expected the Jets to be good and they were actually very good from start to finish en route to a 11-5 record. The defense was still great along with the running game but Mark Sanchez was far more competent now and led multiple late game comeback victories. This season includes the Jets greatest franchise win besides the Super Bowl, which they rode too high off of into a sleepwalked first half in the AFC Championship Game. The Jets should have won the Super Bowl this year. Goddamnit.

1 – 1998 – #2 in overall DVOA in the NFL. 12-4 after a 0-2 start. A dominant home win in the Divisional Round, up 10-0 in the AFC Championship Game in the second half. This once in a lifetime combination of a Hall of Fame Coach, elite random season from a quarterback and a loaded roster on both sides of the football went to waste in the final 25 minutes or so in Denver. Now I am sad.


Author: Joe Caporoso

Joe Caporoso is the Owner and EIC of Turn On The Jets. His writing has been featured in the New York Times, Huffington Post, MMQB and AdWeek. Caporoso played football his entire life, including four years at Muhlenberg as a wide receiver, where he was arguably the slowest receiver to ever start in school history. He is the EVP of Content at Whistle Sports