Changes Loom Ahead For Giants and Jets
2014 has been a huge disappointment for the Giants and Jets. Coming into the season, there were reasons to be optimistic that they would be in contention for the playoffs. Instead, both teams were eliminated from any serious playoff contention by Thanksgiving, and now both teams may look completely different next season.
For the Jets, it’s a forgone conclusion that Rex Ryan will not be the Jets head coach in 2015. After making it to the AFC Championship game in his first two seasons, the Jets have missed the playoffs in each of the last four. What ultimately will be Ryan’s downfall is the fact he was unable to develop a quarterback during his tenure with the Jets. Neither Mark Sanchez nor Geno Smith was able to make significant improvements from their rookie year. There’s no denying that Ryan is one of the best defensive minds in the NFL, but some say he’s more fit to be a defensive coordinator rather than a head coach.
With that said, the Jets defense took a huge step back this season. But, in fairness to Ryan, the blame for the Jets defensive woes should be put on their General Manager, John Idzik. This offseason, the Jets had a chance to bring back cornerback Darrelle Revis and keep Antonio Cromartie. Instead, Idzik neglected the cornerback position and the Jets pass defense went from being one of the best in 2013 to the middle of the pack in 2014.
Idzik also failed to acquire a true number one receiver for the Jets. He was able to sign free agent receiver Eric Decker who is a better receiving option than what the Jets had last year, but he could have signed wide receiver Emmanul
Sanders who is having a Pro Bowl season.
Fans have voiced their dismay with Idzik by calling radio shows, having Fire Idzik bulletin boards and most noticeably having a plane fly over with a Fire Idzik banner. If Jets fans have their way, they will have a new a general manager in 2015.
For the Giants, the 2014 season has been the most disappointing season in the Tom Coughlin Eli Manning era. For the second straight season, they’ve had a losing streak of at least six games and managed to find new ways to lose games.
Yes, this quarterback and head coach has won two Super Bowls during their tenure, but they have also missed the playoffs five out of the last six seasons which makes their situation much different than the Jets.
Management has already said that they believe Manning is their quarterback for the present and future so there’s no doubt that he’ll be back in 2015. However, 2015 is Tom Coughlin’s last year of his contract with the Giants.
Traditionally, the Giants give their head coach a contract extension so that they don’t go into the final year as a lame duck head coach. Given the fact that Coughlin will turn 69 in August the decision on Coughlin’s future could come down to if management thinks the Giants can turn it around in 2015, or if they’re in a rebuilding process. If they believe the Giants woes are a quick fix, Coughlin will definitely be back next season. If they believe the Giants are rebuilding, it’s 50/50 that Coughlin will be back.
One person whose future with the Giants that is in serious question is defensive coordinator, Perry Fewell. The Giants have always prided themselves on defense. But this season, the Giants defense has been unable to create any consistent pass rush or make timely stops. Although the Giants defense has been ravaged with injuries this year, Fewell has failed to make the necessary adjustments that could have led the Giants to victory. This was evident in the Giants lost 38-17 to the Seahawks when the defense gave up 350 rushing yards, or when the Giants failed to blitz Tony Romo on the final drive in the Giants 31-28 loss to the Cowboys.
If someone is likely to be let go for the Giants misfortunes in 2014 Fewell is the likely candidate.
The good news for fans of both teams is that there’s a silver lining in the cloud of disappointment that plagued both teams this year. Both teams will have a top 10 pick in this upcoming draft. The Jets will probably look to add a play maker such as Alabama wide receiver and Heisman finalist, Amari Cooper. The Giants can go in a number of directions in the draft. but they’ll more than likely get the best offensive lineman available or look for a dynamic linebacker.
Having early draft picks and having salary cap room to acquire free agents should make fans hopeful that 2015 will be a better season than 2014. But while you will see new faces as far as the team’s roster is concerned, you will also see changes in the team’s front office or coaching staff for the miserable season that 2014 has been.