NFL teams rarely succeed with a sub par quarterback. However that is a non-issue for the New York Jets because winning games most likely isn’t in the cards for the 2016-2017 NFL season.
Why the New York Jets Shouldn’t Have Signed a Quarterback
The Jets currently have one of the weakest rosters in the NFL. Their defensive backs can’t cover and only recorded eight interceptions in 2015. Their receivers are sub par and led the NFL in drops last season. Lastly, the Jets offensive line is in shambles. In 2015 they gave up seven more sacks (35) than the Jets defense recorded (27).
That is why the Jets shouldn’t worry about a quarterback this upcoming season.
Instead, the Jets should build a team that can be a supporting structure for a future franchise quarterback. Over The Cap currently has New York 24 million dollars under the salary cap. On top of the cash, they also hold the sixth overall pick in this year’s draft.
Many Jets’ critics believe the team has the opportunity to spend money on a quarterback with Jay Cutler, Josh McCown and Brian Hoyer all available in free agency. Osweiler, who is currently in Cleveland, has also been linked to the Jets.
If any of those quarterbacks were to start for the Jets, their ceiling would be six or seven wins, while their floor would be a mere two or three victories with the current roster.
In Houston, Osweiller couldn’t put up decent numbers with DeAndre Hopkins at receiver. Hopkins is worlds better than any receiver on the Jets, so its unlikely Osweiller could revive his career in New York.
Cutler has been on the decline the last few years. His completion percentage has dropped the past three seasons and he hasn’t started all 16 games since 2009. Instead, the Jets should roll with Bryce Petty behind center. With a full offseason and job security he might perform at a higher level.
None of the free agent quarterbacks currently linked to the Jets will take them to playoffs, so at that point they might as well start Petty. If they give him a chance, and he doesn’t perform, at least they’ll know he isn’t the future. Petty will put as many fans in the stands as Cutler or Osweiller would.
Starting Petty also gives New York the ability to build a team around whichever quarterback they decide to go with in the future. Instead of paying a quarterback 10 million dollars a year that won’t win many games, they can use that money to provide depth to their offensive line and defensive backs.
The next step is the draft. The problem with putting a rookie quarterback on this team is the Jets don’t have the weapons to help him develop. An injured Eric Decker and a suspended Jalin Marshall isn’t an ideal situation for a young quarterback.
In his latest mock draft, NFL.Com’s Daniel Jeremiah has the Jets drafting corner back Marshon Lattimore from Ohio State with their first round pick. In a division with the likes of Sammy Watkins, Brandon Cooks and Jarvis Landry the Jets will need a star cornerback to hold down the fort, and Lattimore can be exactly that.
If the Jets can build their offensive line and address their problems at linebacker with the rest of their picks, the team outside of the quarterback position will be in much better shape than just a year before.
Young talented players at those positions will give the Jets a foundation to work around before adding their franchise quarterback.
However, there is one last avenue the Jets could go down. The Jets could draft a quarterback. While pick number six is probably too high to draft Deshaun Watson or Mitchell Tribusky, the Jets could trade down to draft one of those players.
If the Jets were to trade down and draft one of those players, at least the extra picks would help them in the future. One very strong draft class can change a franchise. Just look the Oakland Raiders with Kalil Mack and Derek Carr.
The only problem with going with Bryce Petty is the Jets are essentially saying they’re ok with only winning four or five games in 2016 and while that might lead to more angry callers for Mike Francesa, it will help the Jets in the future.p
Whatever direction the Jets decide to go in 2017, building a team around a quarterback that they like rather than picking or paying someone just to have someone take snaps is pointless. Roll with Petty. Build a team around him. Then decide if he’s the future and then get a real Quarterback in 2017.