The New York Jets have been an organization in turmoil basically since their last playoff appearance in 2010. Fans are tired of the Jets being mostly a non-contender year after year. Before the upcoming 2017 season, the Jets have plenty of issues they need to address in order to be a force in the league.
How the New York Jets Can Become a Contender in 2017
Quarterback Consistency is Key
Most successful franchises in the NFL have consistency at the quarterback position, both in play and players. The New England Patriots have Tom Brady, Pittsburgh Steelers have Ben Rothliesberger, and the Atlanta Falcons have Matt Ryan. Those are just a few examples of how consistency at the position can help a team become better. But not only does having the same player at the position year in and year out help, but consistent level of play as well. The Jets have not enjoyed those factors in a very long time.
During the 2016 season, they have had a carousel at the quarterback position. Four different players took snaps throughout the year. That means that the receiving corps could not build a relationship with the passer at all, which in turn affects the amount of points scored through the air. Lack of a passing attack also affects overall record. You lose one whole facet of your game plan, that is a huge blow.
In the off-season they need to bring in a quarterback. Unfortunately, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bryce Petty, and Geno Smith are not the answer. Christian Hackenberg will be an untested sophomore in the 2017 season, so going with him as a starter will be an experiment. The Jets don’t have time for any more experiments, the Fitzpatrick one failed and the Smith one failed. A veteran quarterback (Tony Romo?) needs to be signed and able to immediately produce on the offensive side of the ball. They need results this season, not just for the fans but for themselves.
The Jets Need a Leader
One thing that the Jets really don’t have either is a leader. Typically, the quarterback is the leader of the team, but given their awful state at the position that’s not a viable option. A defensive leader has not emerged either. Without a firm leader in the locker room, the morale will continue to go down, and internal issues will thrive. Morale is important both on and off the field. A leader will bring the morale up when needed, but also bring a team back to earth if they get too high on themselves. Right now the only person even closely resembling a leader is head coach Todd Bowles. It’s important that the coach is a leader, but the team needs a locker room leader as well. Without a vocal leader that is willing to shoulder the many burdens the team offers, morale may stay down.
Expectations for the Jets in 2017
The expectations for the Jets are at an all time high among fans now. The playoff starved team needs to make the postseason in 2017. Anything less than that and changes will have to made once again in the front office and coaching staff. Realistically, the chances of the Jets making the playoffs are slim, especially with their given issues that they have to fix. Without resolving any of those issues their is almost no chance of a post season for the Jets once again.