New England Patriots AFC East Analysis: New York Jets

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May 27, 2015; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall (15) catches a pass during organized team activities at Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

Many thought that New York would make a big splash in the 2015 NFL Draft and trade up for Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota. Instead, the Jets settled on Bryce Petty in the fourth round. Petty needs a lot of coaching and will not be ready to contribute for two years at minimum. Many pre-draft analysts simply believe he does not have starting-caliber talent and will be a backup in a best case scenario.

Ohio State wide receiver Devin Smith was probably the best 2015 NFL Draft pick by the Jets. The deep threat receiver could grow into a star in the NFL and was coveted by several teams in the middle of the second round of the draft.. He’ll be a solid deep threat if the Jets ever find a quarterback to get the ball to him.

The New York Jets added Brandon Marshall from the Chicago Bears fire sale this offseason to complement last year’s expensive free agent pickup at wide receiver, Eric Decker. Decker was clearly not the threat he was in Denver with Peyton Manning throwing him the football and defenses focusing on Demaryius Thomas on the opposite side of the field.

Adding the aging former Bears receiver will probably be just a one year experiment as Marshall tends to be a distraction wherever he goes . With his eroding skills, NFL teams are not going to be as forgiving of his locker room antics. Last year’s disappointing second round draft pick Jace Amaro will be counted on again at tight end to push starter Jeff Cumberland.

New York didn’t draft a running back, but did trade for Zac Stacy and sign former Patriots running back Stevan Ridley. In other words, the Jets are counting on incumbent Chris Ivory to stay injury free and be the undisputed top running back for all of 2015.

The Jets biggest weakness is the offensive line. D’Brickashaw Ferguson and Nick Mangold are their two best players. Mangold is still playing at his usual Pro Bowl level, but Ferguson has been ordinary since turning 30 years old. The rest of the line was below average and that included expensive Seattle cast-off Breno Giacomini at right tackle.

In free agency the Jets again went to Seattle’s scrap heap and overpaid for another mediocre offensive lineman, this time James Carpenter. Carpenter has always had problems with conditioning and injuries throughout his time in Seattle. Now with a pile of cash the Jets expect him to be motivated to get ready to block for Geno Smith and Chris Ivory after not being motivated to be ready to block for Marshawn Lynch and Russell Wilson. After being a first round draft pick in 2011, Carpenter has been shifted from tackle to guard and ultimately ushered out the door by the Seahawks.

In the 2015 NFL Draft the Jets did not address the offensive line until the fifth round. Jarvis Harrison is a very athletic lineman. Unfortunately, he was not a very good blocker at Texas A&M. He did not play as strong as his size would expect and did not have the drive to finish blocks. He had issues with his weight and conditioning and was benched multiple times due to his lack of conditioning. He is a project who is not going to be asked to contribute for at least two years.

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