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Opinion: the Jets revamped receiver group points to Zach Wilson


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I'm going to preface this by saying it is just an opinion; I have no inside information here, haven't asked anyone a question yet (I intend to), and is purely based on my own personal observations. Wi

Very interesting.  I can't wait to just see what happens already. So tired of the never-ending QB debate

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8 minutes ago, KRL said:

If stretching the field vertically is going to be a key element in
our offense there's no way Darnold is staying, he's been way too
inconsistent.  In addition, did we sign Cole over Smith-Schuster
because he's a better deep threat?

They signed Cole over Juju because he would sign here for the price they wanted to spend. 

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3 minutes ago, New York Mick said:

They signed Cole over Juju because he would sign here for the price they wanted to spend. 

And because they can easily move on from him if Mims/Cager/rookies develop. 

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While I don't entirely disagree--would it make much sense to bring in a receiving corp without speed for any QB? Even on intermediate throws you want the opportunity for receivers to break away from the offense and pick up big YAC. 

The pats run 5TE sets with short and intermediate plays because their offense is designed around college football concepts of confusion and fast plays but I can't think of many teams playing without at least some deep ball potential. 

 

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Darnold has terrible deep ball accuracy while that is Wilson’s strength. Wilson’s game and build seems similar to Rodgers. Might be good fit in packers style offense.
 

If JD can’t get a 2nd for Darnold maybe keep him and draft Wilson?? Best case Darnold plays well and you can trade him with higher value (if option picked up this year) or maybe do franchise tag and trade?? If Darnold looks shaky and Wilson beats him out, keep Darnold as back up and let him walk after the season.

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my intuition tells me that LaFleur will be running the Shanahan offense with a “Green Bay” twist—it won’t be as pass-heavy as his brother Matt LaFleur’s offense, but similarly, will implement a lot of vertical passing.

So....not the San Fran/Shanahan Offense at all then.

Good effort and analysis, no criticism, and you could certainly be right.  Guess we'll see.

As I've said elsewhere, I believe our WR group is generally unimpressive as they stand today, but on that too, I guess we'll see.

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28 minutes ago, football guy said:

I'm going to preface this by saying it is just an opinion; I have no inside information here, haven't asked anyone a question yet (I intend to), and is purely based on my own personal observations. With that said, if the adds of Corey Davis and Keelan Cole indicate anything, it's that we should not expect this to be a San Francisco-style short-passing offense. Whether or not that means a change at QB is coming, I don't know, but its my opinion that this personnel meshes better with Zach Wilson's game than Sam Darnold's. 

I don't want to make this about "whose better" because truthfully, we don't know who is. Darnold could end up being an All-Pro and Wilson a bust for all we know, so I'm just going to focus on the playing styles and skill-sets. 

Both Sam Darnold and Zach Wilson are great athletes at the QB position and have an uncanny ability to make incredible throws into windows that no one thought was possible. It's not because of their arm strength, it's instincts and field vision. It's their ability to move and throw on the run and make these occasional "how did he do that" throws that appeals most to the "Shanahan tree" of coaches. Both QBs have an erratic trait because they're so natural outside of structure, and the Shanahan system does a phenomenal of channeling those abilities within structure. I know that sounds like an oxymoron but that's the best way I can describe it. But while Darnold and Wilson have the baseline similarities that the "Shanahan" system requires/desires, the two QBs are stylistically different. 

Sam Darnold has plenty of arm and is capable of making spectacular throws deep both within structure and outside of it, but he finds his rhythm on the move, off-platform, hitting receivers in the short-intermediate section of the field. Sam is at his best in chaotic situations where he can escape and make a play; for whatever reason it gets him more focused than the mundane QB tasks. He is not a rhythmic deep/contested ball passer and is much more natural throwing to receivers in stride. Unlike Sam, Zach Wilson gets in a rhythm by throwing deep passes. He's not quite as natural throwing off-platform as Sam, but he can. He's not as natural as Sam is escaping pressure, but he's similarly good at throwing on the run. I wouldn’t call his arm strength rare, but his instincts and accuracy on deep throws are. He doesn’t hesitate to put the ball in the air in contested situations. I'm not going to throw the stats out there, so you're going to have to trust me when I say that’s Denzel Mims (6'3", 207), that’s Corey Davis (6'3", 209), that’s Keelan Cole (6'1", 194). All of these guys have a deep-ball element to their game, and have thrived in contested situations. To an extent, that would explain why Perriman was still an option to return (which had legs; I don’t think it’s a coincidence he signed with Detroit after the Cole deal was announce). 

Ultimately, Douglas makes the call on who the team signs, and as we've come to learn, Davis was his top WR. At first, I saw that as a signal Douglas was favoring his scouting instincts, and that if the Jets were running a SF-style passing offense, that would mean Denzel Mims may have a relegated role. Both Davis and Mims are "X" receivers in the Kyle Shanahan offense, and if you looked at the last time Kyle Shanahan had a receiver like them, it was Julio Jones. He used Julio in a variety of different ways that no other coaches had used him before - mostly on play-action attempts over the middle. That's what Davis thrives at in the present, and with Mims still needing to develop I kind of wondered how they could incorporate Mims if Davis was the primary X. What I didn't consider (and should have) is that while there has been some disagreement on how the coaches and front office ranked receivers, Douglas is not the type of GM to dismiss the coaches input and he's not the type to give up on a talent like Mims quickly. He knows what the coaching staff is looking to build, and that very well be an offense more similar to his brother’s than his mentor’s. 

The “San Francisco offense” they’re going to bring may be my name only; it may be schematically similar, but the play-calling philosophy may be different. I think they’re going to run the ball a ton (putting stock into receivers who can block), they’re going to implement the outside zone, they will add some elements of Kyle’s passing scheme, and they will be among the league leaders in play-action passing attempts, but if I’m evaluating these receiver adds on the surface, I see a LaFleur offense that’s going to attack downfield far more often then his mentor, and most likely taking pages out of his brother Matt’s [Packers] playbook. 

The Packers also run a variation of the Shanahan scheme, but unlike the 49ers, they were the most prolific deep ball passing team in the league in 2020 (comparatively, the 49ers were among the least productive and attempted among the least amount of deep balls over the past few years); that’s what happens when you have one of the games best deep ball passers in Aaron Rodgers. Take a look at the 2020 stats to see what I mean. 

Screen Shot 2021-02-25 at 11.57.28 PM

There’s that old saying, “adapt or die.” The only way to be successful in any walk of life is by being adaptable. That’s no different I’m coaching; if you can’t adjust to your talent, you won’t succeed. Regardless who the QB is, Denzel Mims is a real asset, and I hope the team realizes they can’t let his talent go to waste just because he doesn’t fit a certain scheme (he wouldn’t fit the SF Shanahan offense as well as an offense that attacks vertically more consistently). Corey Davis and Keelan Cole are more versatile, but they too have shown flashes of consistency as deep/contested ball receivers. As I began, I'm going to say again that I have no inside information here, just purely my perspective, but if the Jets plan on maximizing all of their receivers skill-sets, my intuition tells me that LaFleur will be running the Shanahan offense with a “Green Bay” twist—it won’t be as pass-heavy as his brother Matt LaFleur’s offense, but similarly, will implement a lot of vertical passing. There's a reason why some compare Zach Wilson to Aaron Rodgers, and it's not because he has the freakish arm that Aaron does, but it's because they have the same playing style. 

If we're to evaluate these moves on the surface, I would think that this receiving group is a better fit for what a QB with the playing style of Zach Wilson rather than Sam Darnold. We should know if that's the case soon enough. 

You could be right. I hope you aren't. It could be that he, JD, wants quality depth, so that if injures happen, the staff knows that they have some proven receivers during a season that Darnold will be heavily evaluated as to whether they want to commit to him, long term. They're would be no excuses aa to the quality depth that he had to throw. As opposed to last year.

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Hypothetically, have you thought about whom else this, tweaked version of the west offense (suggested by the Jets wide receiver signings), might fit among the top four or five draft eligible qbs?

In a parallel AFC East universe, in his podcast yesterday with Bucky B., Daniel Jeremiah has suggested, based on New England's tight end and wide receiver signings (along with resigning Cam Newton), that Belichick might well trade up for Trey Lance or Justin Fields. DJ "I know that New England loves Justin Fields as a prospect."

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33 minutes ago, KRL said:

If stretching the field vertically is going to be a key element in
our offens
e there's no way Darnold is staying, he's been way too
inconsistent.  In addition, did we sign Cole over Smith-Schuster
because he's a better deep threat?

Call me crazy, but this tells me Morgan is gonna get more of a look than people think.

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If it’s not Watson or Russ, it has to be Wilson or Fields at 2. Nobody wanted Sam to be good as much as I did but I just don’t think it’s going to work out here, he’ll go be a good QB somewhere else.

Wilson seems to be the most logical fit 

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Stop guessing and find out.  🤣😂😅

 

Great read bro.  Makes a lot of sense.  Wilson loves throwing deep and based of his competition he wasn't sacred.  The NFL is whole other story where CB's and safety's will make plays if you think you can just chuck it down field all day.  Taller wideouts make a difference.

Although one wonders if the tall WR's can help Sam with his overthrown passes. LOL

Thanks again for your intel and detailed opinions. 

 

 

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I was actually thinking about this yesterday, thanks for the breakdown. 

As I said before on other posts, I haven't seen a QB in college understand leverage and throw better 50-50 balls than Zach Wilson.

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12 minutes ago, Paradis said:

 

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If OP’s supposition is true, the draft will go Trevor at #1, Zatch at #2, and the rest of the QB-needy teams will want that #3 spot currently owned by MIA. 

One thing we have going for us is Miami will not be motivated to trade with NE if it means delivering them their FQB.

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As the OP states, this is his opinion. But I think we can all agree that @football guy has enough inside knowledge to understand the vision, approach, methodology, and thought-process of what’s happening at 1 Jets Drive to label this an...

INFORMED OPINON. And that’s as good as we’re going to get until the draft comes. Don’t let the fact that Darnold hasn’t been traded yet blind you. The Jets will be taking a QB with the 2nd pick.

Arizona didn’t trade Rosen until AFTER they draft Murray. Who knows, the guy you want may slip and tear his ACL at a pro day. Why gamble and trade Sam now? Someone will trade for him and if the amount of suitors is limited and the return is a lot less, then so be it. We still have a boatload of high draft picks over the next 2 seasons and a chance to draft one of 2 QB’s who would go 1st in any draft not involving Trevor Lawerence.

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I'd also add that they are also continuing to prioritize high character guys and wide receivers who give effort in blocking. Play action is going to be a big factor in the new offense, so it's nice to see that the FA pickups are going to fit in the new system as well.

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When I watched Wilson, he reminds me of shortstop.  He can make accurate and crisp throws moving in any direction, and even when jumping.  Throws well off-balance ,his feet don't need to be set. 

He looks like a shortstop on the move to 2nd base, evading the aggresive slide to take him out... and slinging a sidearm to 3/4 arm angle to finish the double play.

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I appreciate the post, but I’m not sure you are using revamped in its proper context.

The Jets still need to take a receiver at 23 or in round 2. Let’s score touchdowns this year

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I had the same thought and posted it in the FA thread. Your well thought out more detailed post makes me feel less like a crazy conspiracy theorist. Great stuff.

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1 hour ago, Warfish said:

So....not the San Fran/Shanahan Offense at all then.

Good effort and analysis, no criticism, and you could certainly be right.  Guess we'll see.

As I've said elsewhere, I believe our WR group is generally unimpressive as they stand today, but on that too, I guess we'll see.

I don’t see how the receivers they sign fit into the style of offense they ran in SF. None of our top guys are true “RAC” weapons. Can they be? Sure. But they’re not the quick/elusive types that make you miss and generate yards in the open field. Maybe I’m just looking too much into it, but I see 3 guys who are effective blockers, that play with good game speed, and win in contested situations

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Rebuttal 

Corey Davis is a savage run blocker and an ideal fit in the SF WCO which relies on Play action and the threat of the run 

Cole is just cheap crowder

they are going to cut crowder 

 

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36 minutes ago, RoadFan said:

When I watched Wilson, he reminds me of shortstop.  He can make accurate and crisp throws moving in any direction, and even when jumping.  Throws well off-balance ,his feet don't need to be set. 

He looks like a shortstop on the move to 2nd base, evading the aggresive slide to take him out... and slinging a sidearm to 3/4 arm angle to finish the double play.

Dam Sarnold also likes to throw without setting his feet 

Wilsons film looks amazing until one realizes how much of it would be intercepted by nfl secondaries 

 in the NFL, fundamentals matter. Neither Sanchez nor darnold had reliable footwork and Wilson's platform flexibility is just more of the same 

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2 minutes ago, bitonti said:

Rebuttal 

Corey Davis is a savage run blocker and an ideal fit in the SF WCO which relies on Play action and the threat of the run 

Cole is just cheap crowder

they are going to cut crowder 

 

And hopefully trade down from 2 for a bunch of picks

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