Stephen Russo on why Jets fans have reason for optimism.
There is no doubt the Jets delivered a gut punch to every fan this past Sunday in Los Angeles. Somehow, some way, Adam Gase managed a win against Sean McVay on the back of 76-year-old Frank Gore and his 24 touches (and his 2.7 yards per rush). The entire Jets fanbase took a collective hit to the groin like we did when Keith Byers fumbled in Denver, or when Drew Coleman let Peyton Manning’s pass go over his fingertips to Pierre Garcon, or when Big Ben hit Antonio Brown on 3rd down to seal the deal, or when Ryan Fitzpatrick almost connected with Kenbrell Thompkins in the 4th quarter in Buffalo, or… did I make my point clear enough?
Stephen Russo ranks the New York Jets head coaching candidates…
Adam Gase’s 23-month tenure as HC of the NYJ has been one for the record books. He has set records for bad offense, ruining careers, ineptitude, affinity for 37-year-old running backs, and number of people involved in a single play call. However, one thing that Gase should include on his resume is that he was the first person since Bill Parcells to unite the Jets fanbase. It seems as though he is the one person who is unanimously hated across all of Jets land, and pretty much has been since day one. You don’t have to go back too far to realize that Gase was very low, if not the lowest, on everyone’s totem pole of candidates back in January, 2019. He may have gotten a slight nod over Rich Kotite or Lou Holtz, but in his almost 2 years he has proven every single one of us right.
Stephen Russo with his dream offseason for the New York Jets
In a season mired by historical ineptitude, the Jets have also managed to find themselves on the verge of some other history. They are well on their way to the worst season in franchise history, possibly having the worst season in NFL history and they are pairing that with potentially the worst point differential of any team, ever. They are led by a historically bad head football coach, and to top it all off I think that we can all agree that they have made history for the earliest they have ever made a fanbase want to fast forward to the offseason. However, the upcoming offseason provides the light at the end of the tunnel that so many of us need.
Stephen Russo with thoughts on Sam Darnold…
It pains me to write this. It really does. If you’ve read my work before, you know that I am a Darnold believer. From his bounce back after the first pass of his career to the highlights he gave us late in his rookie year and in the middle of his sophomore season, I’ve been on his side. If you go back to before the season, I actually predicted the Jets to finish at 8-8 with a shot at the playoffs based on the sole reason that I felt Darnold was ready to make the leap in year 3… I was wrong.
Stephen Russo goes 1st and 10 on the New York Jets latest blowout loss…
Before anything else, I’m a fan. I bleed green. My father instilled this in me at a young age the same way that I am doing with my 6-year-old son. The story is that Joe Namath signed a deal with the Devil to beat the Colts in Super Bowl III, and if that’s the case I’m pretty sure my dad was the one who handed him the pen.
The season is three days away, and while I had to take our optimism down a notch last week with a recap of the Jets most painful losses, let’s change the pace and allow that positivity to creep back into our lives with the best Jets wins in the last 30 years. Here’s to hoping some good memories will spurn a successful kickoff to the 2020 season!
Stephen Russo on why the New York Jets are not tanking in 2020…
Somehow, over the course of the last few weeks, the tide has shifted in the world of Jets fandom and the panic has started to set in, and that word has been uttered more than a few times in the twitterverse: tanking. In a matter of days, the Jets traded their star safety in Jamal Adams for an absolute haul in return and their $85 million stud middle linebacker opted out due to COVID-19. Not exactly ideal for an arguably talent deficient roster as is. And for some reason, it seemed as though the “Tank Talk” didn’t start until the Jets cut guard Brian Winters (yes, you read that right). Maybe Jets fans placed an incredible amount of stake in the oft-injured guards meaning to the offensive line or maybe it was just the timing of it all, but as soon as the name Trevor Lawrence started creeping into the conversation, I had to throw my hands up in disgust.
Pump. The. Brakes.
Stephen Russo on if Joe Douglas can have the same impact on the New York Jets as Bill Parcells
It was more than 23 years ago that Bill Parcells made the infamous quote “If they want you to cook the dinner, at least they ought to let you shop for some of the groceries” as he left the Patriots to become the Jets Head Coach and General Manager. And if you’ve read my work before you’d know that I typically reference the 1997-2010 era of Jets Football as the “glory gears.” It’s no secret that Bill Parcells was the catalyst for those years of perpetual success (because to Jets fans perpetual is a relative term). There is no denying the success that the organization had during that run. In those 14 years, the Jets had 11 seasons where they finished 8-8 or better, made 7 playoff appearances and had 8 playoff wins. What would we give up for that kind of success again?
Stephen Russo with a closer look at UDFA WR Lawrence Cager, from Georgia
6’5” and 220 pounds. That’s pretty much all you need to know, right? Well, it may be his size that has created a lot of buzz for undrafted free agent Lawrence Cager, as the Georgia receiver has caught some significant attention following his joining the Jets on Sunday following the conclusion of the NFL draft. Cager clearly brings his size and physicality to the wide receiver position with the Jets, who need bodies to compete and his potential could lead to a surprise roster spot.
Stephen Russo with a closer look at new Jets WR Breshad Perriman
There have been a few buzzwords tossed around thus far to describe Joe Douglas’ approach to his first Jets’ offseason: strategic, disciplined, and tone-setting to name a few. No argument here. That has been exactly what Douglas has done, and for the most part, it has been somewhat of a breath of fresh air. While there is still work to be done, the moves have been smart, low-risk, high reward signings. Good for Joe and good for the Jets.