The New York Jets are coming off a disappointing 4-12 campaign, which marked the end of the line for head coach Rex Ryan, who couldn’t get the team over the hump after taking them to back-to-back AFC Championship Games in his first two years on the job.

The new head coach is Todd Bowles, who spent the past two years as the defensive coordinator for the Arizona Cardinals. Teaming with Bowles to get the franchise back on its feet is new general manager Mike Maccagnan. Bowles played a big part in the Cardinals resurgence, as Arizona ranked in the top 10 in scoring defense in both seasons he was there.

While a change of scenery will provide a fresh start and hope of getting back to the playoffs, New York could find it difficult to escape the basement of an improved AFC East, which still belongs to the New England Patriots.

Last Season
AFC East
ATS Record
Home ATS
Road ATS
Offense Rank
Defense Rank
Turnover Margin
Points For
Points Against
2015 Roster Changes
Draft Picks
Leonard Williams (DE), Devin Smith (WR), Lorenzo Mauldin (OLB), Bryce Petty (QB), Jarvis Harrison (OG), Deon Simon (NT)
Darrelle Revis (CB), Brandon Marshall (WR), Antonio Cromartie (CB), Buster Skrine (CB), Stevan Ridley (RB), James Carpenter (OG), Ryan Fitzpatrick (QB), Zac Stacey (RB), Kellen Davis (TE), Marcus Gilchrist (SS), Joe Mays (ILB), Jamari Lattimore (ILB), DeVier Posey (WR)
Percy Harvin (WR), Kyle Wilson (CB), Kenrick Ellis (DE), Phillip Adams (CB), Nick Bellore (LB), John Conner (FB), Chris Johnson (RB), Dawan Landry (SS), Michael Vick (QB)
2015 Schedule & Odds
Week Opponent Spread Win Chance
1 Browns -2 0.53
2 @ Colts +7.5 0.22
3 Eagles +2.5 0.45
4 @ Dolphins +3.5 0.36
6 Redskins -2 0.53
7 @ Patriots +8.5 0.20
8 @ Raiders PK 0.50
9 Jaguars -5 0.68
10 Bills +1 0.49
11 @ Texans +5 0.32
12 Dolphins +1.5 0.47
13 @ Giants +5 0.32
14 Titans -4 0.66
15 @ Cowboys +7.5 0.22
16 Patriots +4.5 0.33
17 @ Bills +3.5 0.36
Estimated Wins: 6.64
Roster Breakdown

Fielding a strong defense was never an issue for Ryan, who is one of the best defensive minds in the game, but he failed miserably at putting together an offense that could compliment them. The Jets finished last season ranked 22nd in total offense (326.6 ypg) and 28th in scoring (17.7 ppg).

While the team added in talented veteran wide out Brandon Marshall to beef up the receiving corps, they still have major questions at the quarterback position. Geno Smith returns after an up and down sophomore season in which he threw for just 2,525 yards with 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. Smith has the physical talent to be a solid starting quarterback, but there’s major concerns with his ability to grasp the mental part of the game.

The team did add in veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick as insurance, but all signs point to Smith being the starter in Week 1. It will be interesting to see if he can emerge in what figures to be a more wide-open offense under new offensive coordinator Chan Gailey. Ryan strictly wanted to run the football down the throats of opposing teams. With Marshall in the mix, Smith will have a couple of capable receivers to throw to in him and Eric Decker, but they are going to need more out of 2nd-year tight end Jace Amaro. They also added rookie deep-threat Devin Smith, but I’m not expecting much in his first year.

The Jets parted ways with Chris Johnson and added in Stevan Ridley and Zac Stacey, but the primary back figures to be Chris Ivory. It’s hard to figure out why the Jets didn’t make Ivory more of a feature back, as he was clearly their best option.

As for the offensive line, it’s not nearly as strong as it use to be. Left tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson and right guard Willie Collon are on the decline and right tackle Breno Giacomini needed to be upgraded. They do have a top notch center in Nick Mangold and have added in James Carpenter to start at left guard. It’s still a solid unit, but depth is a concern.

Defensively the Jets figure to be one of the best in the NFL. Last year New York ranked just 24th in scoring defense (25.1 ppg), but were 6th in total defense (327.2 ypg). The big point total was more of a result of the offense not taking care of the football than the defense not playing well.

While it’s hard to knock the Jets for snagging USC’s Leonard Williams with the 6th overall pick, as few thought he would fall that far. The problem is, New York already has 2 stud 3-4 defensive ends in Muhammad Wilkerson and Sheldon Richardson. The trio of Wilkerson, Richardson and Williams will sandwich stout run-stopping nose tackle Damon Harrison.

I’m sure Bowles will find a role for Williams, but I just wonder if the Jets would have been better off taking an outside linebacker to replace veteran Calvin Pace, who turns 35 in October. The hope now falls on former 1st round pick Quinton Coples finally playing up to his potential. While there wasn’t a inside linebacker worthy of taking at No. 6, New York could have done themselves a favor by finding an upgrade over the starting duo of David Harris and Demario Davis. Luckily, these two will be able to continue to benefit from a dominant defensive line.

One of the reasons the Jets may have decided to go with Williams and not an outside linebacker, is the upgrades they made in the secondary, which in turn should help the pass rush. New York brought back the starting corner duo of Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie. They also added safety Marcus Gilchrist in free agency and have high hopes for last year’s 1st round pick in safety Calvin Pryor.

Future Odds
Regular Season Win Total
to Win the AFC
to Win Super Bowl L
33 to 1
85 to 1
Odds Courtesty of 5Dimes

There’s a lot to like about the roster that Bowles will field for the 2015 season, especially on the defensive side of the ball, but I’m just not convinced this is a legit playoff caliber team with either Smith or Fitzpatrick starting at quarterback. While you can win in today’s NFL without an elite starting quarterback, you at least have to have a smart signal caller that takes care of the football. Smith simply isn’t that guy and I don’t think it’s going to get better.

With that said, the talent on defense will keep this team competitive in most games. I could certainly see this team hovering around .500, with the potential to even exceed that mark if Smith surprises. However, I believe both the Dolphins and Bills are in better shape going into the season. I have New York going 6-10 and finishing last in the AFC East.

AFC East Finish
Division Record
Overall Record
Win Total Prediction
Jets 10-Year Recap
Year W L Playoffs Coach Win Total
2014 4 12 Ryan 7
2013 8 8 Ryan 6.5
2012 6 10 Ryan 8.5
2011 8 8 Ryan 10
2010 11 5 Lost Conf Ryan 9.5
2009 9 7 Lost Conf Ryan 7
2008 9 7 Mangini 7.5
2007 4 12 Mangini 8
2006 10 6 Lost WC Mangini 6.5
2005 4 12 Edwards 9

Glenn Naughton

Glenn Naughton

OVER 6.5 Wins – With a re-built defense that some analysts have gone so far as to say it should be a top-five unit, the Jets should be able to rack up a handful of wins against teams like the Browns, Redskins, Raiders, Jaguars, Texans and Titans. A split against division rivals Miami and Buffalo would put them at 8 wins alone.

Geno Smith’s injury should have little impact on their season as Ryan Fitzpatrick is statistically better than Smith and had success under current offensive coordinator Chan Gailey when the pair worked together in Buffalo.

From a talent standpoint, this team is light years ahead of the team that won 8 games just two seasons ago.

Chile the Beast

Chile the Beast

OVER 6.5 Wins – Vegas has our odds better now with Fitzpatrick but I think give or take one game with medium at 7 games. Can easily see six or eight wins. Not much help but the D is still solid and should keep us in almost every game.

Ryan Patti

Ryan Patti

OVER 6.5 Wins – Regardless of the Geno Smith and Sheldon Richardson incidents, I have us going 8-8 this season. The defense is still very talented and we have enough pieces on offense to not stall in the redzone like we did in 2014. When Revis is 100% healthy, the Jets have never finished under .500 (with the exception of his rookie year in 2007). I think that will stay in tact this season since he’s still the best corner in the league in my personal opinion.

Chris Rupps

Christopher Ruppel

OVER 7 wins- Even with Geno knocked out for the beginning of the season, I see this team reaching the 8 or 9 win mark. Ryan Fitzpatrick flourished in Chan Gailey’s system in Buffalo and now has the opportunity to work with Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker (now including additional training camp reps). As we saw when the Jets reached back-to-back AFC Championships with Mark Sanchez, you don’t need great quarterback play to succeed. The key in those playoff runs was a great defense. This defense might be even better.

Paul Andrew Esden Jr

Paul Andrew Esden Jr

OVER 7 Wins – Even with the Geno Smith injury this team is too good. The loss of Geno Smith is tough, he was having a good camp and I think he has a higher ceiling than Fitzpatrick personally. Regardless, the Jets defense will be top-5, running game should be top-10 if not better, and Fitz should be able to play game manager football. Geno is expected to be back within the first several weeks of the season it’ll be interesting to see if he can get the job back. But back to the point here, Jets still have division title hopes and I’m not going to be the one to bust them.

Jason Wiles

Jason Wiles

OVER 7 Wins – Despite the Jets losing their starting QB in Geno Smith to a locker room altercation, the Jets are still in a great position to go over 7 wins on the 2015 season. New GM Maccagnan has done a great job rebuilding the defensive side of the ball, turning one of the worst secondary’s in football into a position of strength. Bettors may forget that seven of the Jets 2014 losses were by a touchdown or less-including losing both Patriots games by under 3 points. For a team with the 32nd ranked passing attack, that’s no small feat.

The improvements on defense, the improved running back depth, and addition of WR Brandon Marshall all factor into surprisingly strong matchups with some of the best teams in football and most of the worst. Teams with weak corners and without strong WR2s could find themselves matching poorly with B. Marshall and E. Decker or D. Revis and A. Cromartie. The Jets are in a good place to lean on their top flight players with plenty of exploitable matchups throughout the season.

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