New general manager John Idzik has done an excellent job of positioning the New York Jets for a decent cap situation after years of mismanagement under since-deposed GM Mike Tannenbaum and the now-mitigated influence of Coach Rex Ryan. Problematic contracts have been cleared from the books and the typical shiny toys have been avoided.
However, one area where Ryan’s personnel influence could potentially save the Jets this year is on the defensive front. It’s easy to make fun of Rex, but his defensive acumen deserves props among the best. Gang Green has continued to load up their front seven with physical-freak presences via draft recent years and this could potentially result in the league’s best rotation in that regard sooner rather than later, as 2012 top pick Quinton Coples expressed during Jets training camp.
“Each and every day we emphasize being great – individually and collectively,” said Coples, via Newsday. “Like I said before, the sky’s the limit. We just have to continue to work hard and continue to make sure we work on the things that it takes to be great. … We’re not trying to be nobody but us besides us. No disrespect or discredit to any defensive front out there, but we want to be the best and make our own name.”
Coples will move to outside linebacker this year, while 2013 first-rounder Sheldon Richardson and the league’s best 3-4 DE not named JJ Watt will man the other end spot in Muhammad Wilkerson. If this unit continues to progress according to its pedigree, then Coples lofty claims could come to fruition very soon.