The Other 31: Jets will be interesting, but will they be better?

June 26, 2013

Geno Smith — the Jets’ third pick of the draft — could help give the team a new look. (Jason DeCrow/Associated Press)

New York Jets

Background: Schedule | Depth chart | Draft | Team page | Previous teams

Last season’s record: 6-10

Key players released: LB Bart Scott, S Eric Smith, T Jason Smith, DT Sione Pouha, QB Tim Tebow

Key free agents lost:  DT Mike DeVito, RB Shonn Greene, S Yeremiah Bell, S LaRon Landry, TE Dustin Keller, G Matt Slauson

Key free agents re-signed: RB Lex Hilliard, K Nick Folk, LB Calvin Pace

Key free agents added: RB Mike Goodson, G Willie Colon, S Dawan Landry, G Stephen Peterman, LB Antwan Barnes, DE Antonio Garay, WR Ben Obomanu

Key player traded: CB Darrelle Revis

Key trade additions: RB Chris Ivory

Draft:

Rd. 1 (No. 9 overall)… Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

1 (13)… Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri

2 (39)… Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

3 (72)… Brian Winters, G/T, Kent State

5 (141)… Oday Aboushi, G/T, Virginia

6 (178)… William Campbell, G, Michigan

7 (215)… Tommy Bohanon, FB, Wake Forest

Analysis: Darrelle Revis is gone. Tim Tebow is gone. So things might finally quiet down for the New York Jets, right?

No chance.

Up next is the quarterback controversy created when the Jets got West Virginia’s Geno Smith in the second round of the NFL draft to go with holdover veteran Mark Sanchez. Tebow no longer is part of the team’s quarterback mix after being released and landing, finally, with the New England Patriots. Yet plenty of intrigue remains. Has Sanchez’s tenure as the Jets’ starter run its course? Is Smith a standout NFL quarterback in waiting and, even if he is, will he be ready to play as a rookie? It’s always interesting, it seems, when the Jets are involved.

Alabama’s Dee Milliner was taken with the draft’s ninth overall selection and he becomes, in effect, the replacement for Revis after the standout cornerback was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Milliner’s college coach, Nick Saban, did his best to slow down the comparisons to Revis. But Revis has exited the big stage in New York and Milliner now is on it in Revis’s place, so any attempt to put a stop to the comparisons between the two probably is futile.

The Jets did well in the draft to both restock their defense, getting defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson 13th overall to go with Milliner, and add a potential quarterback of the future. They also attempted to address their needs on the offensive line in later rounds. But it’s a quarterback-first league and there’s plenty of room to question whether the Jets will be able to get reliable play at the position this season, no matter which quarterback they choose. There’s also reason to question whether the quarterback of the Jets’ choosing will have enough playmakers around him on offense, particularly with the free-agent exits of tailback Shonn Greene and tight end Dustin Keller.

Perhaps diminished expectations would be good for the Jets after several years of Super Bowl-or-bust aspirations. But whatever happens, win or lose, the Jets almost certainly will be worth watching.

Why Redskins fans should care: They’re the Jets. It is likely to be a spectacle, for their fans and everyone else’s fans.

Conversation starter: Should the Jets start Mark Sanchez or Geno Smith at quarterback to open the season?

Have a Redskins question? E-mail Mike Jones at mike.jones@washpost.com with the subject line “Mailbag question” for him to answer it in The Mailbag.

Follow: @MikeJonesWaPo | @MarkMaske | @john_keim (starting July 1) | @D3Keith | @Insider | @PostSports

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The Other 31: Giants move on without Umenyiora, Bradshaw | Previous teams

The Early Lead: Ravens take shot at Heat’s championship celebration

Mark Maske covers the NFL for The Washington Post.
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Keith McMillan · June 25, 2013