Saturday, August 22, 2009

J-E-T-S Jets! Jets! Jets! Jim Hildebrand

It’s been eight long months Jet fans, but the agony of another lost season has been washed away with hopes of intrigue and optimism...

Rex Ryan has taken over for the departed Eric Mangini. Attitude has displaced ineptitude.And Mark Sanchez is under center instead of…do I really need to say his name?

The most intriguing story line of Jets training camp has undoubtedly been who will start at quarterback week one. Ever since the Jets traded up to the fifth slot in this year’s draft to nab the former University of Southern California quarterback, there hasn’t been much doubt.

The organization has been enamored with Sanchez since he went against former Jet and current USC head coach Pete Carroll’s advice and decided to go pro. Sanchez has all the tools to become a big time signal caller in the NFL. The questions that surround him are his inexperience. He started merely sixteen games at the collegiate level.However, he is extremely bright and knows the game of football, having engineered Carroll’s pro-style offense at USC; he has outperformed the incumbent Kellen Clemens in the preseason; and he has a coach who dealt with all this “rookie-quarterbacks-can’t-win-in-the-NFL” talk only one year ago.

After a year in which Ryan saw his former team, the Baltimore Ravens, go deep in the playoffs with rookie QB Joe Flacco, it appears the new Jets head coach has all the confidence in the world in Sanchez. The fact of the matter is this team doesn’t need a pro bowl QB. In fact, they had one last year and look where it got them.

All they need is someone who controls the clock, moves the chains and doesn’t turn the ball over. The latter is something Clemens has had trouble with not only this preseason, but in his brief NFL career as well. The running game is shaping up to be one of the best in the league. The defense looks to be a top notch unit under the tutelage of Ryan and all his former Raven cronies. Take care of the ball and let everything else fall into place and you have a winning football team.

If all these things go as planned, the Jets will not only be a playoff contender, but may just end up being a Super Bowl contender.

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