The New York Jets have the longest NFL playoff drought running as they had not made it past the regular season since 2010, when they made back-to-back AFC Championship Game appearances. The front office has been proactive about this new look Jets team by being aggressive with guys like wide receivers Tyreek Hill and DeeBo Samuel in the trade market, despite not landing either player. Instead, general manager Joe Douglas has been building this team through the NFL Draft and veteran free agency.
Today, we are going to make NFL Predictions and explain what the New York Jets can look forward to this upcoming year.
Offensive Line Continuing to Improve
The offensive line is arguably the second-most important position group on a football team behind the quarterback.
The Jets have some young, talented offensive linemen in Mekhi Becton and Alijah Vera-Tucker, both being drafted in the first round of the draft in the last few years. Both players are essentially in their second season after Becton failed to appear in all but the season opener in the 2021 regular season.
Becton needs to work on being more disciplined as he has failed to figure out how to stay on the playing field. Vera-Tucker had a little bit of a learning curve throughout his rookie season, but both will improve with more reps.
A lot was made about Becton missing voluntary training camp as some believed it was to hide other issues, but he was waiting with his girlfriend for the birth of their son, which was reported to be a high-risk pregnancy. However, that is not important, and this offensive line should continue to improve with more reps.
Zach Wilson and His Weapons
Rookie Zach Wilson made some improvements throughout the course of last season after being drafted second overall, but this year is critical to determine how well he can be in the NFL. His 2021 numbers do not look great as he finished with nine touchdowns to 11 interceptions for 2,334 yards but had a 5:1 touchdown to interception ratio from Week 12 on.
The team decided to get him some weapons to help his development, as they drafted wide receiver Garrett Wilson, running back Breece Hall, and tight end Jeremy Ruckert in the NFL Draft while also adding guys like tight end CJ Uzomah and re-signing wide receiver Braxton Berrios.
Do not forget that wide receiver Elijah Moore is still on the roster. Joe Douglas equipped the team with a lot of offensive talent.
The question remains on how Wilson is able to improve after his rookie campaign as he needs to improve from where he was a year ago statistically. If he can take that next step into a top 15 quarterback this season, which might be asking a lot, it can really make this team go forward.
Jets Got the Sauce Defensively
Defensively, Robert Saleh will love the additions on the side of the football he is more familiar with. The Jets were able to select Ahmed “Sauce” Gardner with the fourth overall pick in the draft and added defensive end Jermaine Johnson II with the 26th pick to really bolster the defense on day 1 of the draft.
They will be tested as they have a tough schedule this season, facing some tough offenses like the Miami Dolphins, Baltimore Ravens, and Cincinnati Bengals, just to name a few teams.
The Jets made some improvements on the open market with safety Jordan Whitehead to help in the secondary as well, so this should be a good overall team.
Vegas has the win total for the Jets at 5.5, and I have completely bought into this team as they made significant progress during the offseason in all three facets of the game. I must have drank the kool-aid because I see the Jets competing for the final AFC Wild Card spot in Week 18 of the season.