Thanks for your mailbag questions. Demand was so overwhelming that we have split the mailbag into three. Parts one and two were yesterday and part three is right here. Apologies in advance to anyone who got a non-answer or a sarcastic response.
Remember, everyone was told to ask one Jets/NFL question and one non-NFL question…
Taking a look at two of the units with the biggest turnover since last season, who do you think are the week 1 starters on the offensive line and in the secondary? And do you think the starters are improvements from last season?
Obviously Mangold, Brick and Howard will start barring something unexpected. Right now, it looks like Colon will start if healthy and the other spot will be between Peterman and Winters. Peterman was poor in pass protection last year, so he worries me. At the same time, I felt Winters was pretty raw when I looked at film on him. However, if both of these are ahead of Ducasse (who was as good as Slauson last year), then hopefully that’s a good sign. Optimistically, I think Colon can be as good as Moore and if those guys are ahead of Ducasse then they must be an upgrade over Slauson. However, realistically, if Colon goes down, I think the guard position got weaker unless Winters develops really well.
In the secondary, I think we get Cromartie, Milliner, Landry and Allen (or maybe Bush) with Wilson as the nickel. Is that an upgrade over Revis-Cromartie-Landry-Bell? No. However, it might not be too far off Cromartie-Wilson-Landry-Bell which is what they had for most of the year.
Non-football question; who do you like in next year’s world cup?
Definitely not England. We’re terrible right now. Might not even make it.
The usual suspects – Brazil, Spain, Italy, etc. will battle it out. Brazil has home-field advantage, so they’ll be tough to stop.
Jets Q: Do you see any possible trade scenarios for the Jets prior to the regular season, in either direction? For example, trading to get another team’s #2 WR or TE, or trading away a role player like Bilal Powell or Kyle Wilson? If so, what are some possibilities that come to mind?
The ones you mentioned were exactly the possibilities I would have suggested. They could well have a surplus at cornerback or running back. I don’t think Wilson is going anywhere, but you never know – maybe all that “best offseason ever” talk is leading towards that outcome.
Other Q: Summer movies – which will be the biggest success, which will be the biggest flop, and which are you personally most excited for?
I’m too excited for the new Star Wars films to care about any of this year’s collection of remakes and sequels.
“The Internship” looks absolutely awful. Maybe “Pacific Rim” will be good because Stringer Bell is in it.
I just looked at a list and there’s a film with the following blurb – “A freak accident might just help an everyday garden snail achieve his biggest dream: winning the Indy 500.” No, I did not make that up.
What method of suicide will you use if the Celtics trade Rondo, especially if it’s to the Knicks?
I don’t think the Celtics will trade Rondo, especially not to the Knicks, although it’s going to be pretty hard to keep him on board with the rebuilding effort they’ve got going on. If he does leave, I’ll be pretty upset because he’s damn exciting to watch, even if he is yet to consistently perform at the elite level he’s tantalizingly attained on a few occasions.
Having already suffered the superstar tearing his ACL followed by getting traded for 50 cents on the dollar scenario once this year with Revis, I’d rather not endure that again. Losing the rest of the team was bad enough. I’d stop short of suicide though.
What is a defensive playcall that you would personally like to see that you have not yet seen run in the Rex era? Perhaps a blitz you designed yourself?
There’s very little we haven’t already seen. I always enjoy seeing something we’ve never seen before. I remember when Brodney Pool lined up at defensive tackle but then there was a pre-snap penalty, so we never got to see what the plan was. I’d like to see them revisit that one with Antonio Allen on the line.
#1) When are the Jets going to win the Super Bowl?
It will happen one day.
#2) When am I going to win the Lottery?
You’ve said many times how you are living in paradise and have a beautiful family. Seems to me like you already did.
Jets Question – Name the 5 most overrated and/or underrated NY Jets players going into the 2014 season?
Over/underrated lists are impossible because the guys everyone says are overrated are always guys that everyone says suck and therefore they cannot be overrated and in fact are often underrated. For example, is Sanchez overrated when everyone says he’s the worst starter in the NFL? If he is the worst starter in the NFL, then he must be correctly rated.
I don’t think many people realize just how good guys like Barnes, Garay and Colon can be if healthy, so I’ll call them underrated. The most overrated guy on the team right now is probably Winters, although I hope he soon lives up to the expectations. Just to get to five, I’ll name Vlad. You can decide whether he is over or underrated.
Non-Jets Question – What is the meaning of the universe?
The dictionary defines it as “All matter and energy, including the earth, the galaxies, and the contents of intergalactic space, regarded as a whole.” That was easy.
NFL related, when do you think the rookies will be signed?
Could be any time. They may have already done it. Tannenbaum sometimes used to finalize the deals in the last week before camp. I’m not concerned.
Non NFL, do you partake in fantasy football?
I don’t. I used to, but the last time I played I was in a league where kickoff return yardage was as valuable as rushing or receiving yardage so I won easily by picking a bunch of kick returners.
Ironically, if it was a keeper league, I’d have made out pretty well because I had guys like MJD, Eli, Santonio Holmes and Wes Welker on my roster.
I would never pick a Jets player for fear of a double jinx.
NFL: How come there are no qualitative stats for or serious analysis of long snappers?
Actually, this is starting to happen. See here for an example of the numbers they track (speed, target score etc) to come up with an efficiency formula at a long snapping camp.
Also, PFF does track every player on every play so Tanner Purdum did generate some stats – four tackles and a -1.0 overall grade. That was the same grade as AFC pro bowl representative John Denney.
Non-NFL: Why am I the greatest American you personally know?
I must have led a very sheltered life.
NFL related: Recently, the Pats offered an exchange program for all Hernandez jerseys….if Sanchez leads the NFL in turnovers again and ranks last in completion % in 2013 , do you think the Jets will offer a similar program?
No chance (although I did read today that his jerseys are ALREADY 50% off). Besides, I think it’s unlikely he’ll last long enough to lead the league in turnovers again.
Moral Dilemma: If one (or all ) of my three daughters, brings home a guy for me to meet that is a Giant or Patriot fan (worse), what course of action should I take ?…(is it OK for me to contact Aaron Hernandez?)
Wait, is the choice between being a Patriots fan and a Giants fan or a Patriots fan and an actual Giant? If it was the latter, that could be cool – your grandchildren could play in the NBA!
Some Giants and Pats fans are okay, you know. Hopefully your daughter(s) will pick someone who can make them happy without being a total douche. It’s likely nobody will ever seem good enough for your daughter … but then again you don’t want her to be alone forever, do you?
Jets Question: How worried are you that the Jets will miss out on the QB talent at the next year’s draft which is supposed to have some of the best QB prospects in ages? Unless Geno completely bombs on every game he’s in this year, I don’t think they’ll be drafting a QB in the first round.
Not that worried. I don’t think they’ll pass on a really good one unless Geno has an amazing rookie year. We could easily find that next April’s class doesn’t look so hot after all anyway.
Non-Jets/hypothetical question: How do you let a girl, that you met at a friend’s wedding, down easy. Let’s say she’s a very close friend of the bride (the friend’s wife) and she keeps texting you and stalking you on facebook, etc. You wanna tell her to stay the hell away but you also don’t want to piss your friend off especially since you might have let her on a little.
Friendzone her! Do it for the male population. See how THEY like it!
Jets question: Favorite Jet memory?
The first game I attended was the win over Oakland to make the postseason in 2006. That was a great day. However, the one moment where – even though we were just watching on TV – we were all jumping around like crazy in a way I’ll never forget was probably that Shaun Ellis fumble return in 2008, which was as hilarious as it was exciting.
Non-Jets question: Greatest musician/band ever?
“Greatest” implies a certain level of success which pretty much rules out most of my favorite bands. My favorite song-writer is Ben Folds and my favorite ever band is Mansun, pretty much the only band from the ‘90s not to get back together.
As an indication of my taste in terms of more successful commerical acts, I’d say that my favorite Super Bowl half time show ever was Prince.
Jets Question: How bad was our Special Teams Coverage really last year? Did you see a Scheme change as Kotwica took over more of the coaching duties and/or do you expect to see more of a change this year?
They weren’t that bad, but definitely a notch below what we’ve come to expect from Westhoff’s units and some of the breakdowns (the McCourty touchdown) were very costly.
I’d attribute most of the struggles to personnel and injuries specifically. However, nobody can project what type of transition they’ll make to Kotwica’s style and schemes, which probably borrow heavily from Westhoff’s old playbook anyway.
Non-Jets question: What is your favorite tailgate food? As a family full of chefs, my tailgates might be a little more intense, but I have always been a fan of pulled pork sliders… well anything in slider form really
I’m spoiled because we get tailgate-style food cooked for us every week by one of our friends, which we then get to eat in the comfort of the living room of another of our friends. Literally everything he cooks us is awesome.
He will often cook food from the home town of one of the teams that is playing that week. So, say we’re watching the Eagles, we get Cheesesteaks. The Saints? Jumbalaya. The pork tenderloins we got when the Jets played the Colts in the playoffs were particularly memorable.
NFL: Do you think Sanchez is in the conversation to be one of the worst multi-year starters in NFL history? What number/stat/metric do you feel best captures his incompetence?
I don’t know that Sanchez is that bad. However, pretty much any metric you can take from last year shows how poorly he played in 2012. The fact he’s at or near the bottom in all of these categories (play action, deep throws, under pressure and so on) makes it hard to pick one stat to illustrate how much he struggled, but his QB rating for December – 37.0 – is pretty damning.
Other: What is your favorite British TV series? I’ve seen Spooks/MI-5, Luther, and Sherlock and thought they were pretty good. Any other suggestions?
Of those three, I’ve only really seen Luther, which is great (and a new season just started last night over here). Otherwise, I’d recommend Hunted. Strike Back is pretty good too. If you go back a few years, Skins and Shameless are also great, especially the early series.
That’s it. Thanks everybody for your great questions!