For all of the turmoil that has followed the New York Jets this year, there is a possible silver lining. If they defeat AFC East rival Miami Dolphins in Week 17, then Gang Green will finish at .500. This would be a two-game improvement from last year. Given offensive shortcomings that plagued head coach Rex Ryan one would think that such improvement is enough. Expectations in the Big Apple are different because of an intense media presence. Ryan’s giant personality has played well with his owner who appears to really care for him. Sadly, results have not improved these last few years. In both 2011 and ’12, the Jets finished on three-game losing streaks. Ending on a positive note now would right some of these wrongs.
New GM John Idzik most likely has conducted a thorough evaluation of personnel and coaching staff. With their rookie quarterback Geno Smith there was a surprising 5-4 start. Eventually, lack of explosive surrounding talent caught up, and they came crashing back to earth. Chris Ivory is solid as starting running back, and a great defensive line provides another building block. Next year’s focus should be on improving their receiving corps. Sunday’s contest should a more efficient Smith and very few mistakes. Next week could be the end for Ryan. Players already stated their desire for his return as well as a willingness to fight. Going out at .500 provides some kind of jumping off point for 2014. Eliminating Miami would also be an added incentive for victory.