August 12, 2012
The big news of training camp thus far has been Tim Tebow and Mark Sanchez. Tebow has stolen the headlines nearly every day so far since training camp has begun. All the talk has been the quarterback “controversy” and whether Sanchez and Tebow will co-exist on offense. The real controversy though is who they will be throwing to.
The Jets are in dire need of some receiving help and Percy Harvin could be the answer for them. Gang Green’s wide receiving core is not very deep or experienced. After their number one receiver, Santonio Holmes, there are a lot of question marks on who Sanchez and Tebow will be throwing too. After Holmes, the Jets receivers are young Jeremy Kerley who is only in his second season. Kerley had just 29 receptions for 314 yards in his rookie year last season. Their next best receiver is 26 year old Chaz Schilens who just had 23 catches for 271 yards last season with the Raiders. After those two, they will look for rookie Stephen Hill out of Georgia Tech to have a big year for them as well as Patrick Turner who had just 8 catches for 96 yards in the 2011 season. It is safe to say that the Jets receiving core right now is depleted.
Clearly, the Jets do not have many viable options on offense. Tight end Dustin Keller will be seeing a lot of balls coming to him with the lack of depth at wide receiver. The Jets are focused on a ground and pound offense this season with the addition of Tim Tebow. The problem with that is they lost Ladanian Tomlinson and are hoping for young Joe McKnight to have a big season backing up Shonn Greene. McKnight has not yet been effective in the backfield as he has mostly been a contributor on special teams returning kicks which he did with a lot of success last season. Greene and McKnight cannot carry this offense on their own when defenses know the run is coming.
While the Jets will be relying heavily on the wildcat with Tim Tebow under new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano, this team needs some receiving threats if they hope to get to the playoffs. Mark Sanchez needs guys he can trust especially after his struggles last season. There have been rumors that they are in discussions with the Vikings about a possible trade for Percy Harvin. This is a deal the Jets need to get done even if it involves trading away first round picks. Harvin nearly had 1,000 receiving yards last season finishing with 967 yards to go with six touchdowns. Adding Harvin completely changes the Jets offense for the better. It allows the Jets to attack defenses with all sorts of options whether it be the wildcat with Tim Tebow, running the ball with Shonn Greene, finding Holmes and Harvin deep down the field, or going down the middle of the field with Dustin Keller. It gives the Jets another fast receiver that can get down the field in a hurry to help out a slow moving offense.
With the additions on defense of Yeremiah Bell and LaRon Landry as well as rookie Quinton Coples, the Jets defense is good enough to be in the top five once again. Their secondary is dangerous with the new safety additions to go with the best cornerback in the league, Darrelle Revis, and Antonio Cromartie on the other end. The difference between Holmes and Kerley and Holmes and Harvin is monumental. It is a move that the Jets must make before September 9th arrives when Gang Green kicks off the season at home against the Buffalo Bills. A trade for Harvin turns the Jets into a playoff team and one that can make a run at what Rex Ryan guaranteed when he came here…a Super Bowl.