Take 5: Reasons to hope

July, 10, 2013
7/10/13
3:27
PM ET
Our "Take 5" series continues with an optimistic view of the upcoming season -- reasons to get excited about 2013:

1. The hunger is back: Let's face it, the Jets got complacent after back-to-back appearances in the AFC Championship Game. They had too many overpaid veterans with a sense of entitlement. Those days should be gone. New GM John Idzik is trying to change the culture. He dismantled the roster, instilling (through Rex Ryan) a competitive environment. No more fat cats.

2. New old philosophy on defense: Ryan is the de facto defensive coordinator, running the entire show -- just like he did in 2009 and 2010. The plan is to get back to their ultra-aggressive ways on defense, which means heavy doses of pressure schemes. If first-round pick Dee Milliner emerges as a solid corner opposite Antonio Cromartie, Ryan will have the 1-2 punch he covets, allowing him to play man-to-man and crank up the blitzing.

3. No Revis, no problem: The defense has a chip on its shoulder, eager to prove it can be an elite unit without Darrelle Revis. That should provide plenty of motivation, especially for Cromartie & Co. in the secondary. They will be sky high to face Revis in the season opener.

4. MartyBall: We're not saying new OC Marty Mornhinweg is another Bill Walsh, but we know he's not another Tony Sparano -- and that's a good thing. Mornhinweg is an experienced play caller with a proven system, and his background with quarterbacks is bound to help Mark Sanchez and Geno Smith. Mornhinweg doesn't have many weapons, but at least he has a plan.

5. Younger, faster: You'll notice this mostly in the front seven, which turned glacially slow last season. The addition of first-round DT Sheldon Richardson will help. So will expanded roles for DE/OLB Quinton Coples, LB DeMario Davis and NT Kenrick Ellis. There's still a shortage of speed on offense, but they should be slightly better in the backfield, with the additions of Mike Goodson (if he's not in jail or suspended) and Chris Ivory.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?