Finding the Needs
Brian Bassett , TheJetsBlog.com
Now that we’re paying full attention to the 2013 season, what moves do the Jets need to make to become a contending team again? While there’s needs all over, here’s four that quickly come to mind.
Shore Up the Line — With two free agents on the offensive line the Jets are going to have some hard decisions to make when it comes to how to replace their two starting guards. Can they re-sign either Brandon Moore or Matt Slauson? Can the Jets realistically consider promoting from within? Will they have any other choice? With needs everywhere and the line being one of the Jets stronger points, the Jets might try to avoid using an early draft pick on a linemen, but since this class is a good class of Guards and Tackles the Jets might be able to find a player in the first two days of the draft that could immediately start if necessary.
A Hold the Fort Quarterback? — The Jets are going to have to find some answers at the quarterback spot this offseason. Mark Sanchez has not shown anywhere near the improvement needed and continuing to hope for his adjustment will prove to be in vain. Tim Tebow will be off the team soon enough and the waters are muddled on McElroy. He played well in relief against the Cardinals, but in his only start he suffered a concussion that he hid from the medical staff and coaches and had one of the worst games a quarterback has had with the Jets in a long time. At the very least, the Jets have to consider bargain free agent options like Matt Moore. Moore has had my eye as an option for the Jets for a few months now. He might not seem like much but he consistently does more with less and seems to be the “hold the fort” type of guy that the Jets need at the present time while they sort out a longer term option.
Run Baby Run — Shonn Greene might not return to the Jets in 2013 since he’s a free agent and hasn’t demonstrated enough consistent value to hang onto. While Bilal Powell showed promise in 2012, the Jets are going to have to make at least one legitimate veteran acquistion as a way to bolster their running game. This class of free agents looks weak and other than Reggie Bush there’s no explosive players in the group. John Idzik knows all too well the importance of having a running back but with an offensive coordinator who has traditionally de-emphasized running the football, we’ll see what the Jets do. Maybe the Jets would look at a player like Rashard Mendenhall as this year’s version of LaRon Landry.
Outside the Linebacker Box — After drafting Vernon Gholston, the Jets have been almost willfully disobedient in addressing the position in the draft since then. While the Jets often play in sub packages that limti the time that OLBs see on the field, the team’s total inability to pressure the quarterback from the spot has been painfully obvious. Coples and Wilkerson’s interior pressure will make the job easier for an outside rusher, so getting the very best player is less necessary now at the spot than maybe it was three years ago. Even so, it’s well past the time that the Jets address the position and with a number of promising candidates in the first few rounds of the draft the Jets might have a good group from which to pick, if they so choose.
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