Jets Preview Capsule
NEW YORK JETS (5-11)
New faces: Rookie QB Sam Darnold, CB Trumaine Johnson, RB Isaiah Crowell, WR Terrelle Pryor, LB Avery Williamson, C Spencer Long, DE Henry Anderson, S J.J. Wilcox, K Jason Myers, rookie DE Nathan Shepherd, rookie TE Chris Herndon.
Key losses: DE Muhammad Wilkerson, LB Demario Davis, RB Matt Forte, TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins, DE Kony Ealy, C Wesley Johnson, K Chandler Catanzaro.
Strengths: Secondary could be major positive with addition of Trumaine Johnson, who signed five-year, $72.5 million in offseason to give coach Todd Bowles potential elite-caliber cornerback to pair with Morris Claiborne. Safety tandem of Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye, both coming off solid rookie seasons, could be huge difference maker on defense. Jets also believe they have quarterback of future in Darnold, who was No. 3 overall pick and could make mark right away; they traded backup Teddy Bridgewater to New Orleans. While receiving corps might lack perceived No. 1-type guy, Robby Anderson, Quincy Enunwa, Jermaine Kearse and Pryor give Jets some legitimate playmakers.
Weaknesses: Lack of true pass rusher remains huge hole in defense. Last year’s sacks leader with just five was Demario Davis, who signed with New Orleans. New York needs Leonard Williams to bounce back in big way from last season, when he had two sacks. Offensive line also big question mark. Long is upgrade at center from Wesley Johnson, but everyone else returns from unit that struggled with injuries and inconsistency. Jets were also one of NFL’s most-penalized teams with 119.
Fantasy Players To Watch: Anderson had breakout season with 63 catches for 941 yards and seven TDs as speedy deep threat. Return of Enunwa from neck injury and presence of newcomer Pryor could create some mismatch opportunities for Anderson downfield.
Vegas Says: Super Bowl 180-1 (longest in league). Over/under wins 6.
Expectations: Jets haven’t been to postseason since 2010, but owner Christopher Johnson insists there’s no playoff mandate for Bowles and GM Mike Maccagnan in duo’s fourth season in charge. Johnson wants to see continued progress. With Darnold likely leading way, there will be growing pains. But this will be valuable experience for rookie as Jets set themselves up to really make noise next year when team will have projected $100 million in salary cap money to work with and make potential big splash in free agency.