NFL 2017-2018 Preseason Schedule

 

By: Will Stevenson

Can you feel it? Just imagine the droughts and sounds of the NFL season. Two-a-days, minicamps, veteran camps, seven on seven drills, torn acl’s, Non-contact injuries, position battles, and most importantly: Expert analysis of guys in shorts.

There are countless things that could irritate a football fan, but actual football isn’t one of them. So between now and the first preseason game, we have months to comb through every team, transaction and predict who will do what when the season rolls around. It will be exciting to see how the top drafted rookie quarterbacks find their footing on teams that made the playoffs last season: Chiefs and Texans. We all know how the preseason goes: Stars play in one or two games for a few series, then the backups. I also have an interest in fringe plays attempting to made rosters within the new safety guidelines for special teams.

So let us take a look at the preseason schedule. The competition will be early as starters make their way off the field after a few possessions, but don’t let that deter you from consuming the whole game. Position battles, overall team health, sheer talent, and a basic understanding of the team’s philosophy will be on display. So it’s not the Pro Bowl, but it’s damn near close for those first few series.

Not need to worry. Football is own it’s way, and it starts with the Hall of Fame Game on August 3rd with the Cowboys and the Cardinals.

 

 

NFL/Hall of Fame Game – AUGUST 3
DAY DATE VISITOR HOME LOCAL ET NAT. TV
Thurs Aug. 3 Dallas Cowboys vs Arizona Cardinals 8:00 PM (ET) 8:00 PM NBC
WEEK 1 – AUGUST 9-13
DAY DATE VISITOR HOME LOCAL ET
Wed Aug. 9 Houston Texans at Carolina Panthers 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Thurs Aug. 10 Minnesota Vikings at Buffalo Bills 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 10 Atlanta Falcons at Miami Dolphins 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 10 Washington Redskins at Baltimore Ravens 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Thurs Aug. 10 Jacksonville Jaguars at New England Patriots 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Thurs Aug. 10 Denver Broncos at Chicago Bears 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 10 New Orleans Saints at Cleveland Browns 8:00 PM (ET) 8:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 10 Philadelphia Eagles at Green Bay Packers 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Friday Aug. 11 Pittsburgh Steelers at New York Giants 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Friday Aug. 11 Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Cincinnati Bengals 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Friday Aug. 11 San Francisco 49ers at Kansas City Chiefs 8:00 PM (CT) 9:00 PM
Sat Aug. 12 Tennessee Titans at New York Jets 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Sat Aug. 12 Dallas Cowboys at Los Angeles Rams 6:00 PM (PT) 9:00 PM
Sat Aug. 12 Oakland Raiders at Arizona Cardinals 7:00 PM (MST) 10:00 PM
Sunday Aug. 13 Detroit Lions at Indianapolis Colts 1:30 PM (ET) 1:30 PM
Sunday Aug. 13 Seattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Chargers 5:00 PM (PT) 8:00 PM
WEEK 2 – AUGUST 17-21
DAY DATE VISITOR HOME LOCAL ET NAT. TV
Thurs Aug. 17 Baltimore Ravens at Miami Dolphins 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 17 Buffalo Bills at Philadelphia Eagles 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 17 Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Jacksonville Jaguars 8:00 PM (ET) 8:00 PM ESPN
Friday Aug. 18 Minnesota Vikings at Seattle Seahawks 7:00 PM (PT) 10:00 PM
Sat Aug. 19 Carolina Panthers at Tennessee Titans 2:00 PM (CT) 3:00 PM
Sat Aug. 19 Kansas City Chiefs at Cincinnati Bengals 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Sat Aug. 19 Indianapolis Colts at Dallas Cowboys 6:00 PM (CT) 7:00 PM
Sat Aug. 19 New York Jets at Detroit Lions 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Sat Aug. 19 Green Bay Packers at Washington Redskins 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Sat Aug. 19 New England Patriots at Houston Texans 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Sat Aug. 19 Los Angeles Rams at Oakland Raiders 7:00 PM (PT) 10:00 PM
Sat Aug. 19 Denver Broncos at San Francisco 49ers 7:00 PM (PT) 10:00 PM
Sat Aug. 19 Chicago Bears at Arizona Cardinals 7:00 PM (MST) 10:00 PM
Sunday Aug. 20 Atlanta Falcons at Pittsburgh Steelers 4:00 PM (ET) 4:00 PM
Sunday Aug. 20 New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Chargers 5:00 PM (PT) 8:00 PM
Monday Aug. 21 New York Giants at Cleveland Browns 8:00 PM (ET) 8:00 PM ESPN
WEEK 3 – AUGUST 24-27
DAY DATE VISITOR HOME LOCAL ET NAT. TV
Thurs Aug. 24 Miami Dolphins at Philadelphia Eagles 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 24 Carolina Panthers at Jacksonville Jaguars 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Friday Aug. 25 New England Patriots at Detroit Lions 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Friday Aug. 25 Kansas City Chiefs at Seattle Seahawks 5:00 PM (PT) 8:00 PM CBS
Sat Aug. 26 Arizona Cardinals at Atlanta Falcons 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Sat Aug. 26 Buffalo Bills at Baltimore Ravens 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Sat Aug. 26 New York Jets at New York Giants 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Sat Aug. 26 Indianapolis Colts at Pittsburgh Steelers 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Sat Aug. 26 Cleveland Browns at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Sat Aug. 26 Oakland Raiders at Dallas Cowboys 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Sat Aug. 26 Los Angeles Chargers at Los Angeles Rams 5:00 PM (PT) 8:00 PM CBS
Sat Aug. 26 Houston Texans at New Orleans Saints 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Sat Aug. 26 Green Bay Packers at Denver Broncos 7:00 PM (MT) 9:00 PM
Sunday Aug. 27 Chicago Bears at Tennessee Titans 12:00 PM (CT) 1:00 PM FOX
Sunday Aug. 27 Cincinnati Bengals at Washington Redskins 4:30 PM (ET) 4:30 PM FOX
Sunday Aug. 27 San Francisco 49ers at Minnesota Vikings 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM NBC
WEEK 4 – AUGUST 31
DAY DATE VISITOR HOME LOCAL ET
Thurs Aug. 31 Jacksonville Jaguars at Atlanta Falcons 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Detroit Lions at Buffalo Bills 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Los Angeles Rams at Green Bay Packers 6:00 PM (CT) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Cincinnati Bengals at Indianapolis Colts 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Philadelphia Eagles at New York Jets 7:00 PM (ET) 7:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Pittsburgh Steelers at Carolina Panthers 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 New York Giants at New England Patriots 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Washington Redskins at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7:30 PM (ET) 7:30 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Cleveland Browns at Chicago Bears 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Dallas Cowboys at Houston Texans 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Miami Dolphins at Minnesota Vikings 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Baltimore Ravens at New Orleans Saints 7:00 PM (CT) 8:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Tennessee Titans at Kansas City Chiefs 7:30 PM (CT) 8:30 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Arizona Cardinals at Denver Broncos 7:00 PM (MT) 9:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Seattle Seahawks at Oakland Raiders 7:00 PM (PT) 10:00 PM
Thurs Aug. 31 Los Angeles Chargers at San Francisco 49ers 7:00 PM (PT) 10:00 PM

The Quarterback Carousel in February: Great

Will Stevenson

With actual basketball games being out of service since the All-Star Game, the sports world has decided to give us all the transaction stimulation we could handle. The NFL was so taken aback by the NBA, they decided to throw out possible quarterback trade destinations for old guys who either get injured or don’t play well anymore-but they use to play great and now teams who don’t have a quarterback will trade for them-but maybe they shouldn’t because they are old-but then again you could catch lightning in a bottle.

Whew. Football.

The New York Jets, who have fumbled around the past few seasons with quarterbacks we knew to be average, will once again seek out another plus-30 quarterback to lead their team. The Jets have had their chances in the draft, but have not been able to develop a young quarterbacks over the past few seasons with Geno Smith and Christian Hackenberg. They went the Ryan Fitzpatrick route and it got them as far as not making the playoffs, again.

The Houston Texans, a punch line for quarterback play over the past few seasons have began to test the waters for the “Used to be good quarterback” club. Somehow, Head Coach Bill O’Brien hasn’t been able to whisper sweet nothings into the ears of these quarterbacks yet. Brock Osweiler was pretty bad last season, and the Texans once again wasted another year as the defense was as strong as usual, but the offense could not sustain consistency in the passing game.

We like to take the video game approach when it comes to the transaction. We have watched Jay Cutler and Tony Romo for the past two seasons and we know they aren’t who they use to be: but that doesn’t matter when it comes to hope. Tony Romo has a back that couldn’t carry his own shoulder blades, and for some reason we think Jay Cutler can “turn it around” with the Jets, even though the Jets haven’t shown the ability to be an offensive threat since the first half of Brett Favre’s only season there in 2008.

So all offseason we will do this whole song and dance all over again. Teams will talk themselves into trading or signing reformation projects  at quarterback. Even though they did not perform well, teams still feel they can be the ones to extract the greatness that was once there.

Somebody is going to be a sucker for Jay Cutler, and I’m just hoping it’s the Jets. Maybe they will go after Romo, God I hope so.

I seriously think you should jump on this wave!

By Lawrence Edwards

OK, before I get started let me tell you that this isn’t a fad that will quickly fade out, nor is it a get rich quick scheme. It’s simple, I am not forcing you or trying to persuade you to do anything. I just want to share with you something that I know sports enthusiasts every where will enjoy and offer you the opportunity to be apart of something or get ahead of everyone else on a trend that is about to take the world by storm. From Football to Cricket we have something every sports will fall in love with. You have two options: Affiliate or Player. I will go in to great detail about both and most importantly the coming of a game changing sports app by United Games that is going to absolutely blow your mind!

Now what we are talking about here is an app that will let you enjoy your favorite sport interactively while watching the game. This app is going to bring a new dynamic way of playing of enjoying sports. It’s not just going to focus on the major sports but every sport.  The point is to get everyone to enjoy sports better, not just the people who have time for drafts and 4 different fantasy leagues or the ones who are good at selecting the right combination of players in order to enjoy the experience.

Now, as I previously mentioned you have two options to join this wave, either as a player or an affiliate. If you want to just be one of the first to enjoy the experience of this game changing app then sign up as a player for free. You will be a pre-registered player and once the app launches within the next 5 weeks you can begin enjoying your interactive sports experience and start earning some rewards and points. I don’t know about you but once I started playing fantasy football and basketball, the game became THAT much more interesting to me. I began to pay attention to things that I didn’t before. This interactive app will award every real sports fan the same experience but much better – did I mention that some of EA Sports former developers are building this thing? – Get ahead of the trend, this app is coming and it’s going to change the way we enjoy sports forever and it will be the first of it’s kind, share it with your neighbors, share it with your family, if they love sports, chances are they will love this!

Now if you are interested in becoming an affiliate of United Games and getting the opportunity to not only get ahead of the trend but earn some money while doing it, then this the route you want to go. Now let me tell you this isn’t a pyramid scheme or something wild like that, if you don’t want to be an affiliate then you don’t have to. We aren’t trying to recruit people for money, we are just offering an opportunity to earn some income based off of people just playing the game. Now when this was brought to me a few weeks ago I had my initial negative thoughts. I was told that I can become an affiliate for free, feel it out see if I like it and if I do I would have to pay a one time fee of $30 to stay an affiliate and $9.99 a month to maintain my affiliate site and if I don’t just simply cancel no harm done. Now I’m no easy person to convince to join things, so I did my own research before I agreed to sign up for anything. Now I hate selling things, I’m terrible at it, so the fact I didn’t have to sell a product and it was an app – I’m a huge tech junkie – helped me decide to really read up on it. So I did my research and found that this app could really be something special and I don’t have to pay my fee until the app launches in 4-5 weeks at the time of this writing. I figured, what can I lose? I can jump on board playing a new fantasy app and maybe earn some money while doing it. Every time you share the app and someone signs up, whether as an affiliate or a player, and starts buying or earning tokens, you get a piece of the pie, NICE! Another selling point for me was the fact that in order for you to earn income you have to fill out tax form 1099. That right there let me know it was legit. Now United Games is offering this opportunity only up until the app launches in 5 weeks. Once it goes live, the affiliate opportunity will be no longer offered. You will only be able to download and use the app.

Whether you sign up to be a player or an affiliate I can assure you that this app is going to change your sporta experience. The point of this blog is to get the word out that a Giant is coming and to offer, what I believe to be a grand opportunity to be apart of the next big thing. If you like what you heard here today feel free to drop a comment, email me (lawrence.edwards115@gmail.com) or if you got here through my Facebook link, just shoot me a DM and I will happily send you a link to be an affiliate or a free player so you will be all set to go when the app launches. Once you click the link there will be more information for you to read through to get an even better understanding. You’re going to love this!

Here is a one page info sheet you can look at to get more information. Feel free to contact me with questions.

 

2016 NFL Season Preview and Predictions

By Brian Jones

For football fans everywhere there are certain points on the football calendar to look forward to and tomorrow is definitely one of them as training camp for all 32 teams gets underway. Before the first official whistle gets blown, however, I’m going to make some bold predictions and give some random opinions on this upcoming season. The Road To The Super Bowl officially starts tomorrow and only one team will win it all. Here is how I believe things will shake out, starting with the AFC and NFC West Divisions (all divisions in predicted order of finish with record):

AFC West

Oakland Raiders (11-5)

Kansas City Chiefs (9-7)

Denver Broncos (7-9)

San Diego Chargers (4-12)

No, that’s no typo and yes, I have Oakland winning 11 games and the division. Seriously. The Chiefs have key injuries on both sides of the ball, a game manager at quarterback and key injuries from players on both sides of the ball. The Chargers are still a mess unto themselves and the Broncos are deciding if Mark “Butt Fumble” Sanchez or Trevor Simian will be their starting quarterback this season (Von Miller can’t do it all). It all adds up to Oakland taking this division and making their first playoff appearance in 13 years.

NFC West

Arizona Cardinals (12-4)

Seattle Seahawks (11-5)

Los Angeles Rams (6-10)

San Francisco 49ers (1-15)

So we got 2 teams that’ll contend for home field advantage and the Super Bowl, one team that’ll contend for pride and little else and one team what will likely be the league’s doormat this season. Seattle and Arizona will fight to see who wins the division while the Rams will look the part of a competitive team but have Jeff Fisher still leading them down the wrong path. Meanwhile, can San Francisco win a game this season (they have a chance to go 0-16)?

NFC South 

Carolina Panthers (10-6)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-8)

Atlanta Falcons (7-9)

New Orleans Saints (7-9)

Carolina ran away with the division and the NFC last season and still have the pieces in place to make another Super Bowl run as one of the NFL’s more competitive divisions continues to rebuild. Atlanta’s late season nosedive still has me concerned and New Orleans is in a bit of a transition on both sides of the ball. Tampa Bay’s successes will hinge on Jameis Winston and his continued development. With everything considered, Cam Newton and Carolina win the division with little trouble this season.

AFC South

Houston Texans (11-5)

Indianapolis Colts (10-6)

Jacksonville Jaguars (9-7)

Tennessee Titans (6-10)

This division could go one of 3 ways – the Colts, Jags or Texans could win the division crown. Houston has the most talent and better overall roster (on paper) and they are the pick here. Andrew Luck can’t stay healthy and is turnover prone while Jacksonville has the pieces to win but may not be ready. Tennessee is still rebuilding and won’t be in the division basement for long. Texans should win the division for the second straight season but don’t at all be surprised if Indianapolis or Jacksonville find a way to pull it off.

NFC North

Green Bay Packers (11-5)

Minnesota Vikings  (11-5)

Chicago Bears (7-9)

Detroit Lions (5-11)

Another division with 2 playoff caliber teams and 2 doormats. Minnesota is a few players away from becoming a Super Bowl contender while Detroit and Chicago both have gunslingers at quarterback with Matthew Stafford and Jay Cutler…but both teams have marginal defenses and little else to fall back on. Aaron Rodgers is Aaron Rodgers and that, along with a championship-caliber roster, will keep Green Bay in the driver’s seat in the division but Minnesota will be there all season to contend for the division crown.

AFC North

Pittsburgh Steelers (11-5)

Baltimore Ravens (11-5)

Cincinnati Bengals (8-8)

Cleveland Browns (4-12)

This division is about hard-hitting defenses and explosive offenses and this season will be no different. Baltimore’s Joe Flacco should recover from his ACL injury while Pittsburgh will bring back a healthy roster after injuries hampered them down the stretch last season. Both teams have the defenses and overall talent to win it all in 2016. The Bengals lost a lot of talent in free agency and didn’t do much to replace it. That will show this season as the Bengals will take a step back. Browns fans may want to have the Cavaliers’ championship parade on standby because there’s not going to be a lot to cheer about in Cleveland as another rebuilding project gets underway.

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys (10-6)

New York Giants (9-7)

Washington Redskins (7-9)

Philadelphia Eagles (6-10)

Yes, you read that correctly, I said Dallas will win 10 games and the division. Until Kirk Cousins can beat a team with a winning record you can put much stock in Washington’s chances this season. The Eagles are in a full rebuild now so don’t expect much from them either. The Giants made upgrades on defense and possibly have Victor Cruz returning on offense but if Dallas can stay healthy and keep Tony Romo in one piece that will be enough for them to win the division this season.

AFC East

New England Patriots (13-3)

New York Jets (8-8)

Miami Dolphins (6-10)

Buffalo Bills (6-10)

This was the easiest division to predict. Most think that since Tom Brady is suspended for four games the rest of the division will get off to a fast start and take advantage, right? Wrong. Dead wrong. The Jets have all the pieces and no quarterback while the Dolphins don’t have enough talent to keep up. Buffalo has the talent but can Rex Ryan do enough with it to save his job? How will things play out? Brady comes back, plays angry on the way to 13 wins, league MVP and another AFC East division title in his pocket.

So there it is, my fearless predictions on how this season will play out…but before I wrap this up here are my predictions on how the championship games and Super Bowl will play out:

AFC Championship: New England over Houston 35-27

NFC Championship: Arizona over Carolina 38-33

Super Bowl LI: New England over Arizona 37-27 (Tom Brady wins MVP)

I’m aware that most, if not all, of what I’ve laid out here may  or may not come true (that’s why they’re called predictions)…but just to be fair we’ll revisit this the Tuesday after the regular season and the Tuesday after the Super Bowl to see how right (or wrong) I was. Football is FINALLY back and this season promises to be another good one full of big games, interesting storylines and excitement that only the NFL can provide. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how things play out this season.

The Jets Will Just Never Learn

By Michael Eccleston

Just when I thought the New York Jets were starting to turn the corner. Just when I thought they were ready to take the next step due to the excellent job GM Mike Maccagnan has done after the dismissal of John Idzik. Just when I thought they were done being those same old Jets, they take massive steps backwards.

If the Jets’ organization thinks that Geno Smith is the answer, then I would like to know the question.

WOW. It is mind boggling that they won’t pay Ryan Fitzpatrick! He came in last year and had one of the greatest statistical seasons a quarterback has ever played in a Jets uniform. In 15 games, he threw for 3,905 yards, 31 touchdowns, and 15 interceptions while completing 60 percent of his passes. Fitzpatrick completed a team that I thought could’ve made a real run in the postseason last year if they hadn’t lost to the Bills on the last week of the regular season. They had a lock down run defense, a solid secondary, a great running game, and a potent passing attack. I’ve never seen a Jets quarterback put up the kind of numbers Fitzpatrick did.

And now they really want to go back to Geno Smith? Didn’t they see enough of the first movie to recognize that the fans don’t deserve to sit through a sequel? Especially when the team is built to win right now. This is the same Geno Smith who has thrown 27 touchdowns and 35 interceptions in two full seasons as the starter. His total QBR is at 41.8, and he’s averaged 1.4 turnovers per game, which are both ranked 32nd out of 33 qualified QBs since 2013. I thought Smith’s Jets career was going to end after he threw three interceptions in his first three possessions before being pulled at home against the Buffalo Bills in 2014. I have never seen a quarterback booed as badly as he was. It got to the point where I felt sorry for the kid.

Fitzpatrick had a great season. What are the Jets waiting for? When a quarterback produces, you pay him. It’s that simple. Especially when you are an organization that plays in the same stadium as a team that has won two Super Bowls recently and four since your last one. In today’s NFL, you need to have a quarterback that has proven something. It isn’t a coincidence that last season when the Jets signed a veteran quarterback who is smart and can play that they went 10-6 and almost made the playoffs. Why would they ruin that? Why would they want to head back down the standings when they were so close to being Super Bowl contenders?

It is beyond puzzling to me, but these three words explain it all:

Same. Old. Jets.

Views From Florham Park

By Brian Jones

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What is going on in Florham Park these days? That is a common question we Jets fans are continually asking ourselves these days as it’s been an off-season fuller of more drama and issues than you’d see on an episode General Hospital or The Young and The Restless. Contract disputes, player releases, questionable draft picks and more. But what does all this mean for the upcoming season for this winnow squad? Well, let’s take a look…

 

Before taking a look at the current affairs, let’s take a look back at last season. A team that no one expected to win more than 4 or 5 games came up with a 10-6 record in Head Coach Todd Bowles’ rookie season at the controls that included a late season (and critical) home win against New England. The season finale at Buffalo was a defacto playoff game due to the scenarios that were in play coming into the game. Win and we’re in. Simple, right? WRONG. Injuries to the secondary, no running game and 3 INTs in the 4th quarter by Ryan Fitzpatrick – including a backbreaking end zone interception with 12:22 to go in the game – as they went on to lose to Buffalo 22-17. So an unexpected season of success came to a crash landing (not so figuratively) for the Jets. Great things on the horizon for a franchise that’s been in 5 AFC Championship Games since 1982 and hasn’t won the Super Bowl in 46 years, right?

 

No so fast and really not at all. Fitz is holding out for a new deal…our defensive anchor in Muhammad Wilkerson is holding out for a new deal, even after receiving the franchise tag for $15.7 million this season…WRs Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker missed a week of OTAs (although they say is wasn’t when it obviously was) in a show of solidarity for support of Fitz getting a new deal…Sheldon Richardson still facing possible suspension for playing Need for Speed: St. Louis County Edition with the cops while a 12-year-old and weed was in the car with him last summer…Darrelle Revis firing his agents in an (another) apparent attempt to get a new contract and more money…harder schedule…questionable draft picks…Super Bowl expectations…but other than that, hey, the view in Florham Park is looking quite well but let’s take one issue at a time here.

 

Ryan Fitzpatrick had a career year last season in the Green and White…31 TDs, 10 ‌INTs and almost 4,000 yards last season – but he also had the aforementioned meltdown in Buffalo that cost us the chance to go to the playoffs. Don’t get me wrong, I am on board with Fitz being our QB for this season and maybe in 2017 too – just not at the price tag he wants, though. He was offered (initially) a 3 year, $45 million deal the Monday after the season and he turned it down, saying he wanted to see what his market value was and there’s no problem with that at all. The problem presents itself where Fitz has shown that when he’s not in a Chan Gailey-based offense that he sucks. In Buffalo he put up numbers and got paid for it (or stole checks if you want to look at it that way) but went on to fail once Gailey was fired. He went on to Tennessee and Houston and didn’t fare well until the Jets signed him as a backup. Originally Geno Smith was supposed to be the starter until he was knocked out by a teammate over an unpaid bet and other issues. Fitz came in and performed and outplayed his contract, okay, cool. I get it – but to be paid like Brock Osweiler and Sam Bradford (all 3 share the same agent) got paid? Isn’t happening, period. The deal is now a 3 year, $26 million deal with $12 total guaranteed the first year. Fitz wants $12 million in salary guaranteed this season. Again, isn’t happening, man. I don’t want to go into this season with Geno (who I strongly believe is not NFL QB material), 2016 2nd round pick Christian Hackenberg (who I also strongly believe is not NFL QB material) and 2016 4th round pick Bryce Petty (who I believe, under the right tutelage, can be a potential star but is ready yet) under center. He needs to swallow whatever is left of this pride, take the deal and let’s go win some games. Speaking of which…

 

This schedule is a killer one and not in a good way. Cincinnati, Seattle, Pittsburgh, Kansas City, Arizona and the Patriots (twice) are all on the schedule. We went 10-6 last season, but these games in and of themselves could represent 6 losses. There’s still Buffalo and Miami twice along with the Ravens and Colts. We lost to the Bills twice by twin scores of 22-17 and struggled in both games. We beat Miami twice and blew them out both games. Don’t see that pattern repeating this season. Our defense will come to play and we made moves in free agency to fill the holes but you don’t play 6 playoff teams and another contender in Baltimore and expect to repeat a 10-6 record again. New England is still New England until Belichick and Brady walk away, Deflategate suspension or not. Buffalo will take a step back but, have long been a thorn in the Jets’ side and Miami always seems to find a way to beat us. Add in the fact that 6 of our first 9 games are on the road (in Buffalo, KC, Pittsburgh, Arizona, Cleveland and Miami) and you wind up getting an 8-8 or 9-7 record this season from Gang Green.

 

Outside of the above, like every other team, we have to deal with roster additions and subtracting. Leading rusher Chris Ivory left for Jacksonville in free agency and franchise left tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson opted for retirement after a stellar 10-year career (in which he missed only one play from scrimmage) that will get him into the Ring of Honor one day, if not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. However, the biggest loss this off-season was that of defensive stalwart Damon “Snacks” Harrison, who traded in Jet green for Giant blue in the off-season. Those three were replaced by former Chicago Bear Matt Forte, former Denver Bronco Ryan Clady and former Pittsburgh Steelers Steve McClendon. In the draft we added former Ohio State linebacker Darron Lee, who will line up all over the field and be asked to cover different positions all season long. The most questionable pick that was made, by far, was the 2nd round selection of former Penn State QB Christian Hackenberg. Most scouts had him as a first round pick after his freshman season, but, his completion percentage fell 5% in that year to the end of his junior season and most draft pundits said he would have served himself better by staying in school and additional season but he came out and was selected 51st overall. Even if/when the Fitz situation gets worked out this will mark the 3rd year in a row the Jets won’t get any meaningful production out of their 2nd round pick (Devin Smith was hurt in training camp and only played in 3+ games before suffering a season-ending injury and Geno Smith was the pick before him. No explanation needed for him.). The other picks were projects and backups that’ll help to contribute this season and going forward.

 

Despite all of this, the view of the Jets really isn’t *that* bad in comparison to other teams in the NFL. The key is going to be trying to find middle ground with Fitz. It’s obvious he’s not getting that big dollar deal so we have to find middle ground get him into camp and get him up to speed. If not, Geno Smith will step in and the season could be over before the first snap of the preseason. The offensive line will be okay and our running game should be one of the best in football. Marshall and Decker will put up numbers again and the defense will be one of, if not the best in the NFL this season. However, with a tougher schedule than last season and all the other storylines surrounding the team this looks to be an interesting season in Florham Park to say the least. In the NFL, anything can happen anytime and, hey, who knows? The next view from Florham Park we see may be the franchise’s second Lombardi Trophy getting carried into the facility.

 

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