2022 Offseason: Fixing the New York Jets
The New York Jets are once again struggling. With just five double-digit winning seasons this century, the Jets remain one of the NFL’s worst franchises. General manager Joe Douglas was hired after the 2019 NFL draft to fix this team. His first move was to fire Adam Gase following the 2020 season and to hire Robert Saleh from his spot as defensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers.
With the 2021 season 10 games old, the Jets are slotted to pick No. 2 overall in the 2022 NFL draft with a 2-8 record.
The job of fixing the Jets has been started with a good 2021 draft class and a strong free agent group having come to town last off-season. But Douglas and Saleh clearly need help. We’re here to help.
How does a team get fixed? It all starts with the general manager and head coach, so we’ll evaluate those as well as the salary cap health of the team. But there are five positions most important to the success of a football team—quarterback, a pass-catcher, left tackle, a pass-rusher, and a cover man—and we’ll evaluate those on this and every team that warrants a fix.
What goes into this series?
Evaluating the front office and head coach
Evaluating the salary cap and free agency
Evaluating core positions and team needs
Predicting free agent signings
Predicting 2022 draft picks
THE GM: Joe Douglas (second year)
THE HEAD COACH: Robert Saleh (first year)
The Jets surprised the football world when Mike Maccagnan was fired after the 2019 NFL draft and Joe Douglas was promptly hired. At the time, Douglas was on the top of most credible lists of future general managers thanks to his work with the Philadelphia Eagles’ front office and his reputation as a top-tier evaluator of talent.
Douglas started late and kept incumbent head coach Adam Gase in his position for one season. A 2-14 record ended Gase’s run in New York and Robert Saleh was hired.
Saleh, a defensive-minded coach, promptly installed his aggressive 4-3 scheme and grabbed free agents like Carl Lawson to run it. To date, the Jets’ two wins aren’t a great example of his ability as a coach, but there is no rush to win here. Ownership and the front office will be patient with the Douglas-Saleh duo.
Helping matters is a strong 2021 draft class from Douglas that has several pillars the team can build around.
QB Zach Wilson, OG Alijah Vera-Tucker, WR Elijah Moore and RB Michael Carter are all starters and have impressed at points this season—with Moore becoming a legitimate threat over the last two months.
There is a foundation here that Jets fans and coaches can be excited about.
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