Most teams prefer youth, speed and keen football instincts when they select players to play in the secondary. The past couple of years, the New York Jets have boasted some of the best talent in the NFL back with athletes like Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie holding down the fort. Now with those high-caliber athletes out the picture, the Jets are in a rebuilding phase holding high hopes that rookies can understand the system as soon as possible. How will they hold up when the ultimate test is presented to them come the 2014 season?
The talent is obviously there to be able to become quite good. One of the secrets to having a very successful football team is mixing veterans with youth as the best teams find the right balance to always be in a position to win. The Jets’ secondary will feature Calvin Pryor and most likely Antonio Allen at the safeties. Dee Milliner and Dimitri Patterson will be starting at cornerback on each side as the Jets plan to rotate players depending on specific defensive plays that are called. The Jets were very smart to put themselves in a position to have plenty of athletes ready to rotate and step in depending on what they want to execute.
In regards to the depth chart for the secondary, it has some true potential to really solidify the defense. Ras-I Dowling, Dexter McDougle and Johnny Patrick are some players who could step up and make a name for themselves as opportunities come to hit the field and perform. Head coach Rex Ryan is a defensive mastermind and will make sure to put players in a position to succeed by utilizing their strengths.
One particular athlete to keep an eye on is safety Dawan Landry. He’s the one with the most experience in the Jets’ system, so he will be looked upon as a coach on the field who can be the vocal leader to keep everyone in check. While he might not see as much starting time as he did in the past, Landry will be key to make sure any learning curves will be handled in stride whether he’s on the field or the bench.
Communication will be key if this young and rebuilt Jets’ secondary will hold up against tough teams like the New England Patriots, Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs. In the end, they have a chance to be great as long as everyone works hard and become a cohesive vocal unit. If they can do that, the Jets will indeed surprise many this season and improve dramatically from last year.