There is no such thing as a honeymoon period with Jet fans. John Idzik will have to get used to that very quickly. I am reserving all comments on the hire itself. Frankly, I don’t know enough other than what I read. It has been reported that Idzik is primarily a cap guy… but other respected NFL personalities like Tony Dungey have dispelled that and said that Idzik knows personnel. Time will tell.
I am also lukewarm on the Mornhinwig hire. He flat out sucked in Philly… but the West Coast Offense may actually suite the team makeup on offense.
Idzik joins a Jets team that is spiraling out of control. His job will be to turn this franchise into something respectable and get them off the back pages for circus-like antics. Let’s go through some of the biggest decisions that Idzik has facing him from day 1:
1. What to do about Mark Sanchez: Sanchez’s cap number is too high to flat out cut this year. He will cost the Jets about $8M if they were to go that route. So we are destined for at least 1 more season of Mark fighting for the starting job. Idzik’s challenge will be how he handles Mark and the Jets QB situation. Does he address it in the draft? Or does he bring in a free agent? There are also rumors of a Matt Flynn trade based on Idzik’s Seattle ties. The handling of this situation will be the most important think that Idzik does in the next two years.
2. Darrelle Revis’ Contract: Tannenbaum really shit the bed on this contract with Revis. He will be a free agent in 2014 and “Mevis” will undoubtedly test the market and award no home town discounts. Idzik will have to pay Revis like a top caliber QB, while having decent coin invested at the other CB position in Cromartie, who was the team’s best player this year. Without Revis, the Jets ranked #2 in overall pass defense this year. The past Super Bowl winners have never invested heavily in the CB position. This is an offensive league now. CB play is important… but not key to long term success. So what will Idzik do? Trade Revis this year before he becomes a free agent? Restructure his deal? What about trading Cro and restructuring Revis at the same time? Either way, this is probably the most important move for Idzik and one that the Jet fan base is totally torn on. He will make friends and doubters very quickly no matter what he chooses to do.
3. Is Rex Ryan an NFL Head Coach?: Idzik inherited Rex Ryan as his head coach. That was part of the deal. Rex had a ton of early success… but that was based primarily on motivating a Mangini built team before it imploded at the first sign of trouble. Idzik will have just one season to assess Rex and whether or not he can truly coach in this league. I fully expect this to be Rex’s final season in NY.
4. Who stays and who goes: The roster is littered with huge cap numbers of players that are not deserving. Idzik needs to get immediate control over his cap number and will likely clean alot of long time Jet faces like Bryan Thomas, Calvin Pace, Bart Scott, Dustin Keller, Mike Diveto, and many more. His ability to cut where he needs to and fill those spots via draft and free agency will be 100% key to the 2013 record of the New York Jets.
In closing… good luck John. As a long time Jet fan and season ticket holder, I truly hope that are the one to turn this ship around. You have some HUGE decisions to handle right off the bat though and Jet Nation will be watching closely and ready to BOO at the first sign of failure.