Fantasy Football Dark Horse Sleeper: New York Jets Defense

By Bill Pivetz

Just look at Ed Reed. Don’t you think he’s happy to be with the New York Jets and reunited with Rex Ryan? I know I do. If there was another picture, it’d probably be of Ryan with a huge grin on his face, too.

This move is perfect for the Jets and its defense. The team sits at 5-4 and would make the playoffs if the season ended today. For a team determined to make it to the postseason, they needed to make a big move and they succeeded. The defense struggled last year, ranking 25th in interceptions and 26th in sacks. While the interception numbers are still low with only five in nine games, the sack numbers have improved to 27. They had 30 all of last year.

The Jets have a favorable schedule the rest of the way. After they play the Buffalo Bills in Week 11, they play the Baltimore Ravens (Reed and Ryan’s old team), Miami Dolphins, Oakland Raiders, Carolina Panthers, Cleveland Browns and Dolphins again. Besides the Panthers, these are all winnable games and the Jets could finish 11-5 or 10-6. For that to happen though, the defense needs to play extremely well as rookie Geno Smith won’t be too reliable.

Speaking of Reed and Ryan’s old team, the two fared well while together in Baltimore. Reed averaged seven interceptions per season in Ryan’s last three seasons with the team and had at least one pick in every season. That was, however, until he arrived in Houston, where he did not have a pick or sack in seven games.

Now, Ryan has stated that Reed won’t be starting or playing every snap, but will be on the field for key plays. Even playing in 25-40 percent of the snaps, Reed will have a big impact on this defense and opposing offenses. With that schedule, the Jets are a defense worth adding for the rest of the year.

Bill Pivetz is a fantasy football writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @Mr_Piv1127.

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