Saturday 03rd December 2022,

Jets must surround Darnold with talent for 2020 season

Jets must surround Darnold with talent for 2020 season


The New York Jets find themselves at a crossroads after an underwhelming 2019 season, failing to reach the playoffs for the ninth term on the bounce. Adam Gase’s first campaign began with an odd manner with his opening press conference and the head coach continued to make baffling statements throughout the season, alienating key players along the way. The Jets ended the term with a 7-9 record – not a glowing endorsement of the coaching skills of Gase or his staff.

As a result, there is huge pressure on Gase and general manager Joe Douglas to improve the quality and standard of performances on the field. The Buffalo Bills have shown that it can be done after ending their 18-year playoff drought in 2017 under Sean McDermott and have returned to the post-season in the 2019 term after their first 10-win campaign since 1999.

The Jets seemingly have the pieces in place, beginning with quarterback Sam Darnold, who has shown enough potential in his first two seasons. The uncertainty in the AFC East makes for a fascinating off-season where the balance of power could shift away from the New England Patriots after 20 years of dominance given Tom Brady’s contract situation and potential retirement as have noted.

It is worth tracking the latest news at to see whether Brady either moves or retires in the off-season, which will open up the AFC East and the Jets have to be in position to strike. Darnold has the ability to make all the throws in the book, and for all his faults in man management, Gase has managed to get the best out of almost every quarterback he has coached during his career – notably Jay Cutler at the Chicago Bears. Taking the next step will be vital to make the Jets relevant in the AFC, in a conference where Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson have become the next stars of the game.

It’s not out of the realm of possibility that Darnold can reach that standard, but they need to surround him with enough talent. Douglas arrived after free agency and the 2019 Draft and has not had an opportunity to even start to put his own mark on the team. He will need to provide quality at the receiver positions – where the offense has been starved of all-star talent for too long. There are a lot of excellent players emerging from the college game and the Jets could be using their first-round pick on a player such as Jerry Jeudy or CeeDee Lamb. Jamison Crowder is good slot receiver and had a satisfying first season with the team and Ryan Griffin had a solid term.

The injury concerns regarding Quincy Enunwa and tight end Chris Herndon will be worth monitoring as both players missed the 2019 season. Both have the ability to make a difference, especially in supporting roles, but they have to prove their health for the new campaign. It will add to the list of positions required in the off-season, while Gase did not ease the burden on his general manager by suggesting that he was not happy with another position.

Running back Le’Veon Bell was a prized target of the Jets last year, but Gase has hinted that he was not pleased with the signing, while the back himself displayed discontent as noted by

Getting those two to sign from the same hymn sheet will be a priority for Douglas along with his main task of providing the talent for their quarterback on the rise. It’s a big off-season for the Jets and they cannot afford to miss the opportunity while Darnold is still relatively cheap on the salary cap.

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