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The Next Steps in the New York Jets Rebuild

New York Jets Rebuild

The New York Jets seem to be moving in the right direction with Joe Douglas at the helm. They hired Robert Saleh as their next head coach, a man people in the NFL seem to revere. He is young, energetic and he personifies his “All gas, no brakes” motto. His players love him, and he really knows how to get the most out of his players. The Jets then drafted their franchise quarterback, a young man named Zach Wilson from BYU. They signed and then drafted a nice core of young players, players the Jets hope they can build around. But what else needs to be done? Here are the next steps in the New York Jets rebuild.

Help on the Back End

The Next Step in the New York Jets Rebuild

Robert Saleh could use his relationship with Richard Sherman to entice him to NY. (Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports)

As of right now, the New York Jets’ biggest weakness is by far their secondary. One could argue this superlative could go to the linebackers, but C.J. Mosley might have something to say about that. Currently, their number one cornerback is Bless Austin, a 6th round pick from the 2019 NFL Draft. After him, Bryce Hall and Corey Ballentine are on the depth chart. After them, a slew of 2021 NFL Draft late round picks.

The only player worth his salt in the secondary is Marcus Maye, who the Jets are currently trying to re-sign. They signed Lamarcus Joyner in free agency, but he provides them limited upside in a limited role. Ashtyn Davis showed flashes last year, but he struggled with consistency and only played in 10 games. In order to solidify the back end, the Jets can look at some other free agents like Steven Nelson and Richard Sherman, though the Jets have shown a hesitancy in signing players in the back end of their career. Nelson is still 28 and would come in and immediately be the no. 1 guy, but Sherman is 33 and would likely take on a sort of mentor role. They can also look to the 2022 NFL Draft, which looks like it may have a couple of high end defensive back prospects in Derek Stingley from LSU and Kaiir Elam from Florida.

Any Backup Quarterback

The Next Steps in the New York Jets Rebuild
Joe Douglas could use his relationship with Nick Foles to bring him to NY as well. (Photo Credit: Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports)

At this point, the only quarterback on the roster with much value is Wilson. James Morgan and Mike White are purely insurance policies, and should never see the field. However, the Jets should be in the market for a veteran backup quarterback. They have been linked to Nick Foles, who took the Philadelphia Eagles to the Super Bowl and won in 2018. Joe Douglas has ties to Foles as well, as he was the VP of Player Personnel with the Eagles from 2016-2019. Regardless, he knows the value of having a strong backup quarterback, and they should do anything they can to acquire one. They can do this through a trade or free agency, but either way it has to get done.

A Hole Here and A Hole There

The Next Steps in the New York Jets Rebuild
CJ Mosley should be one of the best players on the Jets for years to come.

Once these two problems are fixed, like any other team, the Jets can fill in random holes all over the roster. Outside of the secondary and a backup quarterback, some needs include outside linebacker, right guard, tight end and wide receiver. Before the signing of Morgan Moses, you could even argue that offensive line was one of the biggest needs. Bringing in Jarrad Davis will help a little in terms of having a decent linebacker unit, but he and Mosley are the only ones worth talking about.

Greg Van Roten has been below average, so bringing someone in to play right guard would be welcome. In terms of wide receivers, Elijah Moore and Corey Davis should develop into a great 1-2 punch, but they could use an upgrade at WR3. Fans are hyped for UDFA Kenny Yeboah, but the Jets could make drafting a tight end or signing one in free agency a priority.

Needless to say, the Jets roster is not exactly the most talented in the league. However, with more and more moves like the ones Joey Douglas and Co. have been making, they may be a contender sooner rather than later. This rebuild is moving faster than many fans were expecting, and hopefully it doesn’t last much longer.


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