The 2022 season has been a revelation on so many levels. Non of which any sincere Jets fan saw coming. Football seasons had developed into a chorus of hope and disappointment. Tales of Jets fans unable to enjoy the game they love after watching another heart wrenching Jets loss still hang in the air awkwardly only because it”s become familiar. It’s hard to wipe away the hard stain of repetitive losing but the 2022 New York Jets are doing a pretty good job working at erasing those feelings. lets talk about what has catapulted these Jets into contention halfway through an NFL season for the first time since 2015.
First and foremost the Jets finally have game breaking play from premium positions. Carl Lawson is finally healthy and is every bit the edge defender this organization and it’s fans have been longing for since John Abraham. His first step is still not peak Lawson but it’s not that far off, his edge-setting and consistent power rush force teams to game plan for his presence. The presence of standout edge play is paramount in not only getting to the quarterback but also containing all this RPO(Run, Pass Option) concepts offered to these ultra-athletic QB’s in the league today. What it also does is take some of the focus off the interior defensive line which has uncovered a new level of performance from Quinnen Williams who seems unblock able and is currently playing at a all-pro level.
As another player who garners attention from offensive coaches during weekly preparations, Q has seven sacks halfway through the season and has been a one-man wrecking crew. At Cornerback the duo of DJ Reed and Ahmad (Sauce) Gardner have been damn near elite. Both players rank in the too ten in most defensive back categories also while facing some of the more talented wide receiver groups. Questions about why would the Jets need Reed were plastered on social media throughout the pre-season but Joe Douglas could cash in some receipts on that signing. Can’t mention game-changers without bringing up Garrett Wilson. He leads rookies in targets and catches and has been clutch when needed. He has the makings of a superstar while having a very understated vibe off the field.
The coaching staff was hammered (rightly so) last year for not being able to bring better performance out of the players week in and week out. Through it all they persevered and kept believing in their systems and teachings which in turn led the players to follow suit. All their belief has borne fruit with younger players performing way above what you would think they were capable of and veterans assimilating seamlessly into what the team and organization have been doing.
Last but not least the never say die attitude that has been cultivated is something to behold. It seems like no situation is to much or no point amount is insurmountable. This is encapsulated perfectly in how good this team has been in the fourth quarter. They lead the league in 4th quarter scoring and it’s not close. A team this young shouldn’t be this steadfast in who they believe they are. This has to be the culture that Robert Saleh and his gang have been preaching about throughout, It is slowly manifesting itself into tangible results. There are tons more dragons to slay but with all these newfound weapons the quest seems a little less daunting and my friends mean that for the first time in more than a decade we have the makings of a successful franchise