Are the JETS a Playoff Team??

Wow.  Are you kidding me?  The NY JETS a playoff team?  OK…OK..I knew the defense would be top 5 in the league.  I knew their front seven would be a force and would keep them in most every game but playoffs?  Puh-leeeeeese…no way in 2013.  I said their offense was too “offensive”. Well perhaps I was wrong.

New York Jets logo

New York Jets logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rex Ryan is one helluva football coach,  Anyone who hasn’t figured that yet either is a JET hater or simply hasn’t been paying attention. He gets his guys to play.  They buy in and they work hard as a unit.  They have to.  They lack the marque stars with the big names.

 

English: Rex Ryan & The Jets

English: Rex Ryan & The Jets (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But this defense believes they can win every game.  And that was BEFORE Ed Reed showed up yesterday. They are playimng with a fire and a passion.  They are making plays.  Can they keep doing so?  Only time will tell.  I think they can and they will. Muhammed Wilkerson is a BEAST.  In 9 games this year he has 9 sacks, 11 assists, 2 forced fumbles, an interception and 31 combined tackles.  He has arrived.  Rookie sensation Sheldon Richardson (thank you Mr. Revis) has also been terrorizing opposing offenses with his 19 total pressures, including 3 sacks.  This guy has been everything Rex could wish for and way more.  If he stays healthy he will be a force for years to come.  He’s huge, he’s fast, he’s athletic.  He has  been ranked as the top rookie at ANY position this season by Pro Football Focus.  He’s being hailed as the AFC Defensive Rookie of the Year.  Then there’s Damon “Snacks” Harrison, Quinton Coples, Kenrick Ellis, Demario Davis, David Harris…you get the idea.  This one strong defensive unit and should they make the playoffs a great deal of the credit must go them.

A word about Ed Reed.  Rex and Reed know each other from their days in Baltimore.  When he became available this week it seemed like the football gods were smiling on the JETS.  He’s just the presence they need on the back end of the defense.  He knows the system like the back of his hand.  Does he still have some of extraordinary skills that will make him a first ballot Hall of Famer? We’ll get to see that on the field.  I think this was an excellent move by the Jets to strengthen themselves for the stretch run. Not only can he play, he’s sort of a player-coach, mentoring young players in the finer details of Rex Ryan’s defensive schemes.

Ed Reed, Rex Ryan

Ed Reed, Rex Ryan (Photo credit: Keith Allison)

The question then is can Geno Smith manage the offense without making the usual bad rookie mistakes?  He has shown he can do it at least 50% of the time as evidenced by his one good, one bad game history.  If he can play within himself,  and hopefully continue to get great support from the offensive line and running game,  it is possible this team can wiggle into the playoffs,  a scenario that seemed extremely farfetched several weeks ago.  Suddenly with the return of Kellen Winslow Jr, and the mercurial Santonio Holmes,  as well as Jeff Cumberland’s return from a concussion,  the JET offense may be ready to help that great defense get to the promised land.  Now if Stephen Hill can do something to prove he isn’t a complete bust,  9 or 10 wins could be possible. And let’s not forget Nick Folk Hero.  he’s a deadly weapon that can help propel the team even further.

The NY JETS in the playoffs?  Call me crazy but I think they can get in but it won’t be easy.  The road starts Sunday at Buffalo. Here we go.  It should be fun…something no one was expecting a few short weeks ago.

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