BGA: The Expendables – Final 2014 update

Bent, TheJetsBlog.com

Every year, teams have to let some players go. Even though the Jets did bring back some of their free agents (Jeff Cumberland, Darrin Walls, Nick Folk, Leger Douzable, Calvin Pace), they chose not to bring everyone back. Throughout the preseason and during the regular season, we kept track of the progress on the guys they let go. Now the season is over we can wrap up the series and debate how much the decision not to bring some of these guys contributed to the likes of John Idzik and Rex Ryan losing their jobs.

Some stats from PFF are used in this article and throughout the series.

Antonio Cromartie, CB, Arizona

Having apparently almost re-signed with the Jets in the offseason, Cromartie went to the pro bowl, helped the Cardinals reach the postseason and has even floated the possibility of the return to the Jets as he re-enters free agency. While this seems like a success story and he certainly bounced back well from his disappointing and injury-plagued 2013 season, it’s not as clear-cut as that.

Cromartie played well over the first half of the season, other than one rough game against the Broncos where Demaryius Thomas torched him for over 200 yards. However, he really struggled over the second half of the season and actually graded out significantly worse than Darrin Walls and Marcus Williams did with the Jets after midseason. Once again, any team that signs Cromartie is going to have to weigh up if he can be expected to return to his best form and maintain it throughout the season. If he ends up covering number one receivers again in 2015, this could hamper his effectiveness too, because he did not do that this season while paired with Patrick Peterson.

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BGA: 2015 NFL Draft – Interior Offensive Linemen

Welcome to the first instalment of the BGA: 2015 NFL Draft series. Over the next couple of months, I’ll be sharing thoughts and observations about draft prospects for each position group. Today we start with a look at some guards and centers.

Important Note: If you’re one of those people who skim-reads the BGA and then jumps right into the comments section, please ensure you read the footnote at the bottom of the article, as it includes an important announcement. (No, I’m not leaving.)

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BGA: Going out on a high

Welcome to BGA! With Black Monday looming, we’re going to bring you an abridged version of BGA this week with part one looking at the offense last night and part two reviewing the defense and special teams below. There will be one last BGA Extra later in the week though, so please share your questions or requests in the comments section or via e-mail or twitter and I’ll go into more detail where desired.

While I’ve enjoyed covering Rex Ryan’s defense over the last few years, it’s not like that’ll be the last we see of his defensive schemes. These days, schemes pioneered and/or popularized by Ryan’s defenses permeate playbooks all around the league. There’s even a good chance that his eventual replacement will run a defense that has similar aspects.

I will miss breaking down the defense each week though. It was sometimes impenetrable and at others frustratingly exploitable, but always interesting. Whether Rex was throwing out some kind of wrinkle I’d never seen from him before, mixing up personnel groupings with multiple substitutions or just figuring out the best way to overcome a team’s weakness in a crisis, I was always fascinated by how he would approach things. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t.

If this is the last time I get to break down Ryan’s defense, it was good to end on a high, although this was far from a flawless display…

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BGA: One last win for Rex as Geno’s career day sparks Jets offense

Welcome to BGA! With Black Monday looming, we’re going to bring you an abridged version of BGA this week with part one looking at the offense tonight and part two reviewing the defense and special teams first thing tomorrow. There will be one last BGA Extra later in the week though, so please share your questions or requests in the comments section or via e-mail or twitter and I’ll go into more detail where desired. First though, some thoughts on Rex Ryan…

It was in a hallway downstairs in the underbelly of Giants Stadium where I met Rex Ryan. Our “meeting” lasted just a few seconds but has resonated with me ever since.

Ryan’s Jets had just lost a game they dominated to Chad Henne’s Miami Dolphins primarily because of three second half touchdown returns by Miami’s defense and special teams. I was on my way from the press room back to the locker room where I figured I’d have more chance of getting some postgame insights from some of the players as the locker room had mostly emptied with everyone heading into the press room to listen to Bart Scott. Rex was on his way to prepare for his own presser, where he would later declare that the Jets would need to “come out with their hair on fire” the rest of the way if they were to make the postseason.

Players and coaches with scheduled pressers are off-limits after games, so I knew I couldn’t say anything to Rex. I wouldn’t have wanted to anyway, as you could see the exasperation in his face and the weight on his shoulders affecting his gait, as he strode purposely towards me. This was the larger-than-life, pre-weight loss, pre-bruised ego version of Rex, wearing a blue Titans of New York hoodie and a matching white baseball cap. Our eyes met…

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BGA Preview: Jets at Dolphins

During the season, Bent’s Game Analysis charts games for some of the Jets’ upcoming opponents, enabling a break down of what to watch out for on gameday…

The Jets and Dolphins have each suffered through frustrating seasons this year. While the Jets underperformed expectations on their way to a 3-12 start, the Dolphins actually looked like a potential playoff team for most of the year, only to fall off down the stretch. They were mathematically eliminated last week, removing any remnants of sizzle from the match-up. While the Jets and Dolphins have had some epic encounters in the past, this promises to be a somewhat flat affair, with most of the focus likely on what happens once it’s over.

After the jump, I break down the positional groupings (BGA-style!) to try and highlight what the Jets need to look out for. To read more of this story, click here

BGA Extra: Patriots at Jets

Welcome to BGA Extra, where I draw a line under the previous weekend’s game by responding to your questions from BGA during the week. After the jump, I respond to your questions about the game against the Patriots. If you would like your questions answered in future, remember to read BGA each week and leave your question in the comments section.

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