With Rex Ryan getting the ax earlier this week, there’s really no reason whatsoever to tune into Sunday’s contest at MetLife Stadium. Without the opportunity to beat Rex, all you’ve got is, well, the game, which features two lousy teams that are counting the minutes until the end of the season and starting QBs they can’t wait to get rid of.
At least the half-dozen or so fans in attendance will get to move down to the really good seats.
At 4-11, you could say the Jets are playing for pride, but if they had any, they might’ve put up more of a fight these past few weeks. At this point, it appears as though a loss would help Gang Green more than a W, as the most important thing now is positioning for the 2017 NFL Draft.
It looks as though the Jets will get one of the top six picks, which should help fill one of the team’s many holes. It sure seems like they could use help on the offensive line and at tight end, linebacker and, perhaps most of all, in the defensive backfield. Oh yeah, and quarterback. Otherwise, they’re a well-oiled machine.
Of course, the franchise wouldn’t be in its sorry state if it hadn’t drafted so poorly in the first round since striking gold with Darrelle Revis in 2007.
The 2008 draft featured first-rounders Vernon Gholston and Dustin Keller. Gholston, a workout warrior from Ohio State whose impressive performance at the scouting combine vaulted him into the top 10, was a complete nonentity on the defensive line in his brief time in New York. He finished his NFL career without a single sack. TE Keller showed promise as a downfield threat, but was hampered by injuries and finished his Jets tenure with just 17 TDs -- or, in other words, what Gronk does in one healthy season.
Next up, in 2009, was Mark Sanchez. OK, next?
2010: DB Kyle Wilson, who started all of 28 games in his five years in the Big Apple.
Sadly, the list goes on. Quinton Coples (2012). Dee Milliner (2013). Calvin Pryor (2014), who has been a contributor against the run game but has one slight problem as a defensive back -- almost too minor to mention -- he can’t cover anyone.
DLs Sheldon Richardson (2013) and Muhammad Wilkerson (2011) have built solid careers in green and white, earning one Pro Bowl nod apiece. But, at a time when both should be in their prime, they’re disappointments -- basically mailing it in when they bother to wake up on time.
The team’s last two first-rounders -- Leonard Williams and Darron Lee -- have both shown promise, though it’s too early to tell if they’ll justify their lofty draft positions.
Again, whether they finish at 4-12 or 5-11, the Jets will have lots of areas of need to address in the offseason, and, given their unsightly record, will have a high pick to start with. Let’s hope the front office -- headed by GM Mike Maccagnan -- does a better job than usual this time around.