The New York Jets are a team that is, at least, trying to be on the rise. They have recently purged most of the veterans and cancerous locker room presences on the roster in order to build a new culture. A culture that involves winning and accountability.
Enter Dez Bryant. A player who was once regarded as a top receiver in the league but has recently fallen off. At his peak, Bryant scored 16 touchdowns during his 2014 campaign. Recently, however, he tailed only 17 touchdowns over the past three seasons.
The New York Jets Should Avoid Dez Bryant
Bryant’s 2014 season ended with one of the most controversial plays in NFL history. In the divisional round of the playoffs against the Green Bay Packers, Bryant made a game-changing play on fourth and two. What was initially ruled a catch came back to bite Bryant, as it was ruled he lost possession of the ball after diving towards the end zone.
The former first-round pick hasn’t been the same since.
This past Friday the Dallas Cowboys got out from Bryant’s disastrous contract and avoided paying him over $16 million this upcoming season. Once Bryant clears waivers he will be able to sign with whichever team he chooses.
In the age of Twitter and fans being more eager than ever to see their team win a Super Bowl, it is natural that when a high profile player gets released that fans want that player signed to their team.
However, Bryant doesn’t fit what the new look Jets are trying to do. Given that the Jets will most likely be developing a rookie quarterback this season, it would be a tough task to ask said rookie, amongst everything else, to put up with Bryant who has had some relationship issues with past teammates.
There is no denying that signing Bryant would make the Jets a better team, on paper at least. Though his numbers have dipped, he is still an extremely athletic and talented wide receiver and at the right price will be a great fit for a team.
Just Not the Jets
As it stands, the Jets top receivers would be Terrelle Pryor, Jermaine Kearse, Robby Anderson and Quincy Enunwa. In addition to those players, the Jets also have two young receivers in Chad Hansen and ArDarius Stewart.
Though those players might not give defensive coordinators nightmares, Pryor can be a red zone threat and fans saw what Kearse was able to do last year. As long as the Jets have someone serviceable throwing these receivers the ball, they will be able to make plays happen.
So that brings the Jets full circle. Why sign a receiver who causes off the field distractions when you’re receiver core is serviceable and you’re trying to build a winning culture?
A Bryant signing makes sense for a team that is ready to win now, which the Jets are not. They’re building for the future, which is evident by the fact that they traded some of their future to move up in the upcoming draft. Bryant is not a fit for this team, no matter how badly fans might want the front office to pursue him.