Why John Idzik Is Not Getting Enough Praise
We all know what the expectations were for the 2013 New York Jets. Before the season even started, ESPN ranked the Jets as the worst team in the entire league, and the team was even called a “glorified expansion team”. Over the offseason, the Jets parted ways with General Manager Mike Tannenbaum. Although it was never fully explained, the reason many believe Tannenbaum was let go was simply because of the contract that he gave Mark Sanchez. When the Jets fired Tannenbaum, they went on the hunt for a new GM. The man they found, and ultimately hired, was John Idzik, previously with the Seattle Seahawks.
Idzik went right to work in fixing the Jets roster. Idzik cut veterans Bart Scott, Sione Pouha, Eric Smith, Calvin Pace ( later brought back on a one year deal) , Tim Tebow, and then went on to trade star cornerback Darrelle Revis to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Then the NFL Draft took place. Idzik used his two first round picks on cornerback Dee Milliner, and defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson. While Milliner has struggled a bit, Richardson has arguably been the best rookie all season long. With his second round pick, Idzik changed the direction of the franchise with the selection of quarterback Geno Smith. Smith has had an up and down rookie season, but has shown the ability to win big games. Idzik was also able to find two startesr in the draft with their 7th round pick of fullback Tommy Bohanon, and their third round pick of left guard Brian Winters. Five of the seven rookies Idzik drafted are starting this year for the Jets. That shows the talent level of the players Idzik drafted.
After the draft, Idzik went to work on building up the Jets roster. With little money to spend due to the actions of the previous GM, the Jets were forced to go after players who would not want big contracts. Idzik grabbed running back Mike Goodson, linebacker Antwan Barnes, Quarterback David Garrard, safety Dawan Landry, tight end Kellen Winslow, and right guard Willie Colon all before the season. Unfortunately Barnes and Goodson suffered season ending injuries, but played well when they were on the field. Landry, Winslow, and Colon all are starters for Gang Green and all have played a pivotal role in the team’s success.
Idzik has also made some very important in season free agent pickups. He added wide receivers David Nelson and Greg Salas, both who have become a big part of the Jets passing attack. Nelson has also been looked at as a leader on, and off the field. He also picked up return man Josh Cribbs, who has done a very nice job for the Jets returning kicks and punts, but also as a wildcat QB. Just two weeks ago, Idzik also picked up future hall of fame safety Ed Reed. Reed brings veteran leadership to a young Jets secondary, and also a leader in the locker room.
With little money to spend, John Idzik has done an unbelievable job with building up the Jets roster, and is the main reason the Jets are 5-5 at this moment. Up to this point, the Jets have exceeded all expectations that many had for them before the season. If you are a Jets fan, you have to be excited to know that Idzik has more money to spend next year, and also may have ten or more draft picks. The future is in good hands for the New York Jets