Since the 2022 NFL Draft, New York Jets fans have been very optimistic about this upcoming season and so they should be. They were able to walk away with three blue-chip prospects in cornerback Sauce Gardner, wide receiver Garrett Wilson and edge rusher Jermaine Johnson – and that was just in the first round. They also added the perceived top running back in the draft in Breece Hall in the second round.
All of these guys should be immediate contributors on a team that desperately needed an overall upgrade talent-wise. If this draft turns out to be what many think it could be, the Jets’ haul could be viewed as a key turning point to the franchise.
With that said, I think Jets fans should still temper their expectations a little bit for next year. My rule of thumb is that it usually takes two to three years before you actually see great results on a draft class, so while I expect the Jets to be a better team next year, I also expect them to have some learning curves this season. The margin for victory in the NFL is so small and just a couple minimal errors can lose you games. So, I’m going to go through and lay out what I believe to be the worst-case scenario, best case scenario and what I believe will ultimately happen for New York this season.
WORST CASE SCENARIO:
- Offensive tackle Mekhi Becton continues to be an unreliable starter
- Zach Wilson doesn’t make the next step in his progression to becoming a franchise quarterback
- The offense fails to get a reliable running attack going
- They remain one of the worst performing defenses in the NFL
- Head Coach Robert Saleh fails to turn around the Jets’ culture as an organization
BEST CASE SCENARIO:
- The combination of Becton and George Fant turn out to be a good tackle combination
- Wilson progresses as a quarterback, limiting turnovers and making better decisions with the football in his hands
- The running back tandem of Michael Carter and Hall becomes a week-in and week-out staple of this offense
- The defense vastly improves with key additions from this rookie class
- A quick start to the season gives New York the momentum to play hard throughout the season
- The Jets will establish themselves as a run-first offense with an effective run game
- Wilson will be able to make quick decisions with the ball
- Wilson will learn to play within the offense and limit turnovers
- This offense won’t be high-powered, but they’ll limit turnovers and be effective
- Defensively there will be games of high-level play, but there will still be some inconsistencies
- Rookie contributors will look like rookies early on and become better throughout the season
- Will be a rollercoaster season but will ultimately be a positive one
While it won’t always look pretty, I’m expecting New York to make strides forward this season. I believe that last year was more about the coaching staff understanding what Wilson can and can’t do and this year, they will put him in position to be successful. I believe the Jets will benefit from being having an improved roster and a division that is rather pedestrian outside of the Bills. So, I’m expecting the Jets to be competitive in games and while they won’t have a huge jump in wins, the overall process will look better and will be something Jets fans can buy into for the 2023 football season.
- Sep 13, 2023
- Sep 12, 2023