Friday, March 23, 2012

Great Television?

So 24 hours after Six Months Of Tebow Coverage begins (what, you honestly think that the media is going to start actually covering games?), I'm struck by one particular comment, repeated, in the threads of people who are, how shall we say, a little more casual about their football viewing than me.

Namely, that the Jets may be good, they may be bad, but oh my, what a circus! What an undeniable exercise in watchability!

Folks, let me clue you in to something that I already knew, but learned all over again with the 2011 Eagles.

At some point, when the coin is flipped and the men take the field and the circus goes away...

For a team to be very, very watchable...

They have to win enough games to matter.

And this Jets team, well, won't.

Let's look at the schedule, shall we?

Jets vs. Patriots, home and away
Jets vs. Dolphins, home and away
Jets vs. Bills, home and away
Texans at Jets
Colts at Jets
Niners at Jets
Seahawks at Jets
Chargers at Jets
Jets at Jaguars
Jets at Titans
Jets at Cardinals
Jets at Rams
Jets at Steelers

I'm thinking 2-4 in the division (splits against the Bills and Dolphins, swept by the Patriots), 3-2 in the non-division home games (beat the Colts, Seahawks and Chargers), and 3-2 in the non-division road games (Jaguars, Rams, and either the Titans or Cardinals). That's an 8-8 team, and the potential for 10 losses looks a lot more likely than 10 wins, seeing how the Seahawks might be a lot better with Matt Flynn, the Chargers might have a bit of a dead cat bounce to them, and if they get off to a bad start, it could get very ugly, very fast.

Now, that's 8-8 independent of the QB... because this Jets team has issues that QBs don't solve. Like a distinct lack of RBs that really help matters, WRs that aren't overrated, an OL that is starting to break down on health issues. Along with the aging defense and middling special teams, along with the doubts about game-day planning and locker-room cohesion. If you are telling me that a wild-card team is coming out of the AFC East this year, I'm thinking Buffalo before I'm thinking these guys. On the merits, Tebow's Bronco team was better than the Jets this year, which they showed by, well, beating them and going to the second round of the playoffs.

So this *isn't* going to be a playoff team. They aren't going to contend for the division. They aren't going to be very entertaining on defense, seeing how the hidden bummer of last year's team is that they really fell back to the pack last year, and aren't getting any younger on that side of the ball. The historic pattern of coaches like Rex Ryan (and yes, there have been coaches like Rex Ryan before) is that they don't get a lot better with experience. If you are a GM and bringing in a novelty act like Tebow, it also doesn't say much for your confidence in long-term employment, and you have to think that, with the hair-trigger that has been their historical purview, another season without January will bring about serious job changes.

So yes, the Jets will be very, very watchable this year. To viewers in New England, Miami, and Buffalo, and to everyone who has decided to root against them.

No comments:

Ads In This Size Rule