As the 2012 NFL Draft is now behind us, its time to take an in depth look at the Buffalo Bills 2012 opponents. In this series I will examine each of our 13 opponents off season moves as well as take a look at what their team looks like on paper.
Week 1: NY Jets
Off Season Free Agent Signings and Losses
SS LaRon Landry
WR Chaz Schilens
QB Drew Stanton
Acquired QB Tim Tebow via trade
DE/OLB Aaron Maybin
WR Patrick Turner
K Nick Folk
DE/OLB Bryan Thomas
NT Sione Pouha
Cut S Gerald Alexander
Rams sign TE Matthew Mulligan
Colts acquired QB Drew Stanton via trade
Patriots sign CB Marquice Cole
Dolphins sign DE/OLB Jamaal Westerman
Cowboys sign S Brodney Pool
QB Mark Brunell retired
RB LaDainian Tomlinson
WR Plaxico Burress
CB Donald Stickland
S Gerald Alexander
QB Kevin O’Connell
S Brian Leonard
2012 Draft Selections
16. Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina
43. Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech
77. Demario Davis, OLB, Arkansas State
187. Josh Bush, S, Wake Forest
202. Terrance Ganaway, RB, Baylor
203. Robert T. Griffin, G, Baylor
242. Antonio Allen, S, South Carolina
244. Jordan White, WR, Western Michigan
Most of us know a lot about this team being that they are a division rival. Unfortunately the Jets know Buffalo all too well as they have won seven of the last eight meetings. The 2012 Jets are a team surrounded by uncertainty. Anytime you have a dysfunctional locker room anything can happen to the level of play on Sundays.
Will Santonio Holmes embrace Mark Sanchez this year or blast him in the media again as he did at the end of last season? This type of distraction could lead to mediocre play and a divided locker room. Speaking of a divided locker room, the brutal NY media will have a field day with quarterback controversy that will inevitably divide the Jets fan base during the pre season. I know the Jets claim that Tebow was brought in for the “wild cat” offense element the team missed last year after Brad Smith came to Buffalo, but I don’t get a sense that many people are buying it. Remember, Sanchez’s extension was offered and signed before Tebow was placed on the trading block by Denver.
Tony Sparano was brought in as the Jets new offensive coordinator. I tend to think that we will see a lot of what the Dolphins ran offensively now that he is in NY. I fully expect to see 15-20 wild cat formation plays early in the season. That number should dip as most defenses have this form of the option figured out.
The Jets want to get back to running the football this year. Last season they ran the ball approximately 44% of the time. They have been most successful when that number is closer to 55%. They have good running backs and a dominate left side of the offensive line. While drafting Stephen Hill should help the Jets receiving corps, I don’t see a lot of improvements on the defensive side of the ball. Bart Scott has lost a step and was rumored to be on the trading block. LaRon Landry has injury problems and the Jets will miss Brian Leonard’s heart and passion for the game. First round selection Quinton Coples is a boom or bust player as a lot of scouts had issues with his motor. While their pair of corners are arguably the best tandem in the league, Darrelle Revis already wants a new contract with two years left on his current deal.
As I alluded to before, the NY Jets have plenty of off the field concerns that the media will run with causing more and more distractions. This is a team that could be 6-10 as easily as it could be 10-6.