An In-Depth Look At The New York Jets Offensive Power Going Into The 2023 NFL Draft
Updated: May 18
New York Jets owner Woody Johnson said that there would be no playoff mandate for the team in 2023/24.
That is extremely confusing considering the team was holding a playoff berth before going on a losing streak to end the season. New York was a top team in the AFC for a majority of the season despite dealing with multiple starting quarterbacks.
AFC East football was extremely difficult last season as all four teams were legitimate contenders for the divisional win and a wild card berth. New York faired well overall against their AFCE opponents, but it eventually came down to how their quarterback(s) were that shifted the game and the win-loss column outcome.
Undoubtedly the running game helped New York to all their wins, the fall of Breece Hall in Denver gave us a look at just how much the Jets needed him and the run factor. Hall scored the one and only touchdown for the Jets that day, the team just barely won, 16-9. Breece Hall only appeared in the first seven games of the season before the ACL tear, he rushed for 463 yards and 4 touchdowns in 80 attempts, which led the team.
Yes, Breece Hall, who was a rookie, led the entire Jets’ team in rushing yards and touchdowns and only played in seven games. Michael Carter appeared in 16/17 games, starting in 10 of them. The 23-year-old rushed for 402 yards and 4 touchdowns in 114 attempts.
The Jets also had Zonovan Knight who played in seven games, starting in four. Knight was one of the biggest surprises on the season and did damage to the opposition defense. In Knight’s time he rushed for 300 yards and a touchdown in 85 attempts.
Other notables are Ty Johnson and James Robinson. Johnson appeared in all 17 games but only rushed for 160 yards, but he only had 30 attempts. James Robinson was a trade deadline move from Jacksonville to New York to replace Breece Hall. Robinson came over with over 300 yards already on the season, but due to injuries and lack of usage he only had 29 attempts for 85 yards.
New York had three starting quarterbacks in 2022/23: Joe Flacco, Zach Wilson and Mike White. The Jets also used a fourth QB at points in the name of Chris Streveler.
Joe Flacco was used only for injury factors, playing the first three games of the season in place of Zach Wilson, who was injured in the preseason. Flacco would also be used at points during games when an injury took place. The 15-year vet went 1-3 in the win-loss column, completing 57.7% of his passes for 1,051 yards and 5 touchdowns in five games played.
Zach Wilson would come back from injury and go 5-2, it was a horrific five wins and a depressing two losses (both of which came against the New England Patriots) before being benched. As mentioned earlier the running game won games for New York. Wilson would be benched a total of two times in favor of Mike White and end the season 5-4.
The 2021 first round pick completed 54.4% of his passes for 1,688 yards and 6 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. Never have we seen a former first round pick benched twice in the same season, it looked and still looks more and more that Wilson is a potential draft bust.
Mike White had a weird season for lack of better words. He replaced Zach Wilson, threw for 315 yards on 78% of his passes en route to a Jets win in his season debut. White would play consistent football but the O-line had issues defending him *heavily*.
The lack of offensive protection led White to almost being killed mid-game vs the Buffalo Bills, he would be taken out of the game just to come back in and play, finishing the game with broken ribs. White would be sidelined, leading to Wilson coming back.
Zach Wilson was so bad in which he was benched for that second time as mentioned before, once again giving Mike White the call. It was clear though that Mike White was playing injured and was most likely rushed and pressured to play in his return vs the Seahawks. White would end the season with 3 touchdowns to 4 interceptions on a 58.9 pass completion with 1,192 passing yards in four games. White is a free agent this offseason, it is not expected that the Jets will bring him back for 2023.
The Jets haven't made playoff football in over a decade and basically they are just a quarterback away from being that contender team they once were. The Jets have expressed how they want to keep Wilson and continue his development by bringing in a veteran starter, in a way giving him the EJ Manuel treatment. Most likely Wilson won’t be a starter again for the Jets, at least not for 2023/24.
New York has a championship winning defense led by a playoff offense that just needs a quarterback. The fact that the Jets don’t have a playoff mandate for the upcoming season is worrying and definitely makes you question what the front office wants and expects for 2023.
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