New England Patriots AFC East Analysis: New York Jets

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Oct 20, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New England Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones (95) celebrates a sack of New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith (7) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. The Jets won the game 30-27 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Despite what has been written about the New York Jets this offseason, this is still a deeply flawed team on both sides of the ball. An entirely new coaching staff is in place and it is going to take time for the defense and offense to get on track in 2015. The Jets have not won more than eight games since 2010 and no matter how many free agents they bring in, if they do not address quarterback and the offensive line they are never going to be able to catch the Patriots.

Geno Smith has had two seasons in New York and has yet to reach even an average performance at quarterback over the season. Offensive coordinator Chan Gailey is going to be glad he had two years out of football to rest because he has a lot of sleepless nights ahead of him trying to fix Smith. A lot of turnovers, a lot of sacks, and a lot of poor decisions have been the legacy for Smith so far in New York.

Bringing in Ryan Fitzpatrick gives the Jets a league-average quarterback should Smith continue to struggle in 2015. Fitzpatrick has just 33 wins in his NFL career despite 89 career starts. He played well last year in Houston for a stretch before breaking his leg. For all the talk about Fitzpatrick and Gailey working so well in Buffalo, remember that Buffalo never won more than six games with the duo in place and Fitzpatrick did lead the NFL in interceptions in 2011.

Right now in the AFC East, it can be argued that New England backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo ranks as the third best quarterback in the division behind Tom Brady and Ryan Tannehill. The Jets (and Buffalo Bills) may have improved their defense but they are doomed to struggle again in 2015 with Geno Smith as their starting quarterback.

Darrelle Revis, Antonio Cromartie, Buster Skrine, Marcus Gilchrist, James Carpenter, Brandon Marshall, Zac Stacy, Stevan Ridley, Devin Smith, Leonard Williams, Stephen Bowen and Kevin Vickerson can all come to New York in 2015 and none of them individually or combined are going to make the Jets a playoff team until the mess at quarterback is fixed.

The Jets may win a couple more games than the four they won in 2014, but they are in no way a threat to the New England Patriots in 2015. Had they somehow swung a deal to one of the top two draft picks this year and drafted either Marcus Mariota or Jameis Winston there would be some hope in New York for the future. Instead, they have a lot of guaranteed money earmarked for NFL players in their 30s, which is a recipe for disaster.

Can the Jets improve in 2015. Certainly. Can they challenge the Patriots for the AFC East title? No. The Jets need much more rebuilding (and a quarterback) to challenge Bill Belichick and Tom Brady in the AFC East. A more realistic goal for the Jets may be trying to edge ahead of Miami (unlikely) or Buffalo (at least a slight possibility) and get out of last place in the division.