TOJ’s Burning Questions Heading into Jets-Jags

Stephen Zantz previews the burning questions on fans’ minds heading into Jets-Jaguars.

In this week’s burning questions column, TOJ Live Co-Host Stephen Zantz will be addressing the burning questions surrounding the team heading into Jaguars week. The Jets fell to the Dolphins 31-24 which has them at 3-11 on the season.

Where the hell is the toughness from the Jets defense? The Jets stink, nothing is new here. I understood in August this was a transition year. That doesn’t mean it was okay for this team to play without an intensity and toughness on Sundays. Duke Johnson, who was basically out of football for a year, had his way with the Jets defense. He did whatever he wanted whenever he wanted. Tua trucked Michael Carter II into oblivion on a scramble. Saleh has been known as a passionate and fiery coach. I did not see any fire from his defense on Sunday with the exception of Brandin Echols and Bryce Hall. This team needs to stop letting opposing offenses have their way week in and week out. It’s getting extremely frustrating.

Why did Zach Wilson get so much of the blame for the loss? Zach Wilson has not been good thus far during his rookie season. On Sunday, he was okay against Miami. He had a solid first half but was silent in the 2nd. It’s fair to say he needs to be better but people are acting like he is the only problem the Jets have. The defense is historically bad (39 points allowed per game the last 8), the receivers can’t get open consistently and drop balls, & the pass protection is suspect. I understand being the quarterback in a big market leads to more blame and praise than a guy will deserve, but let’s not act like ZW is the only problem on this team. The media was going after Zach for how he dodged a question which was a fair question about his production compared to the other QBs on the roster. Zach knew he was being baited and didn’t want to entertain it. He’s been very good in media sessions but the one time he didn’t approach the situation right, it’s like WW3. Let’s not overreact to one question being dodged please.

Can Denzel Mims be cut the day after the season ends? I will admit I was dead wrong about Denzel Mims. I thought he could be a starting outside receiver for the Jets based on his college tape and flashes shown in 2020. It turns out he’s simply not an NFL receiver. He commits stupid penalties, he doesn’t know how to run routes, and he has trouble holding onto the ball when it’s thrown his way. Joe Douglas needs to admit defeat and cut bait. There is no reason to waste a roster spot on him anymore. Braxton Berrios has far and away outplayed Mims and should be retained. He is the definition of a player who maximizes his opportunity when given a chance. He’s been very good on kick and punt returns. He’s made plays on offense and actually catches the ball. Mims just is not it. Bye.

How should fans approach rooting interest against the Jaguars? We have at last reached the point where fans need to decide if they want to see the Jets win or just tank for a better draft pick. This weekend’s game against the Jaguars has major implications on where the Jets will be selecting in next April’s draft. If they win, they are almost a lock to not be selecting in the top 3. If they lose, they are in the driver’s seat to get a top 3 pick. The tough truth about the 2022 draft is no team is going to be desperate enough to mortgage their future for a QB because it is a weak class. This will ultimately result in teams going BPA early in the draft which could make the Jets unable to select Aidan Hutchinson or Kayvon Thibodeaux who could be game changing edge rushers for a defense that needs one so desperately. The Jets were burned for winning a meaningless 2018 game in Buffalo which led to them getting Quinnen Williams instead of Nick Bosa. I’ve been in the camp of wanting this team to win games but after Sunday’s latest disappointment, I’m rooting for the draft pick. If Zach can play well but they still lose because of their non-existent defense, I’m cool with that.