Fantasy Football Today - fantasy football rankings, cheatsheets, and information
A Fantasy Football Community!

Create An Account  |  Advertise  |  Contact      

FFT's Blog O' Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football Strategy, Advice, and Commentary

2014 Player Outlooks – New York Jets

By: — August 8, 2014 @ 9:35 am

Geno Smity

Smith’s strong finish in 2013 isn’t enough for fantasy owners to make him a QB1.

QB Geno Smith
(2013 QB Rank—#20, 15.9 FPts/G)

Geno Smith showed the typical rookie growing pains for most of his first season in the league. He finished the season barely eclipsing 3,000 yards and throwing for only 12 touchdowns against 21 interceptions. Buried in that abyss, however, was the young field general leading the way to impressive wins at Atlanta and at home against the rival Patriots, where he played very well. Perhaps more importantly for his 2014 prospects, Smith finished the year strong, leading the Jets to a 3-1 record in his last four games. During that four-week span, Smith threw for 790 yards with four touchdown passes and only two interceptions. He also rushed for 186 yards and three more touchdowns, making him a borderline QB1 candidate down the stretch. Reports from training camp have been mostly positive and his “battle” with Michael Vick for the starting job hasn’t been a fair fight as the second-year player has received about 75 percent of the snaps with the first unit. The team added some weapons to help with Smith’s development, most notably former Bronco Eric Decker. Smith was more of a pocket passer at West Virginia who was reluctant to leave the pocket despite his above-average athleticism. The team encouraged him to run more as the season progressed and Smith gained confidence tucking the ball away and taking off and it became a valuable weapon for the team. Smith finished the season with 366 yards and six touchdowns on the ground, despite not running much until the last quarter of the season. Smith should make some improvements as a passer and if he continues to run the ball, he isn’t such a terrible option for your backup quarterback spot late in the draft.

QB Michael Vick
(2013 QB Rank—#38, 18.0 FPts/G)

Michael Vick was signed this offseason under the guise of competing for the Jets’ starting quarterback job. From the beginning, however, he’s been resigned to the fact that the job is most likely Geno Smith’s to lose. Vick is still one of the better running QBs in the league, despite his advanced age. Outside of 2010 he has never been able to put up big numbers in the passing game. Vick will likely only see the field if Smith gets injured or if he struggles and the team is losing. He’s a guy to keep an eye on for a quick waiver wire claim should the Jets call his number, but right now he shouldn’t be listed on your draft board.

RB Chris Johnson
(2013 RB Rank—#9, 12.6 FPts/G)

Chris Johnson, the artist formerly known as CJ2K, wore out his welcome in Tennessee and was unceremoniously shown the door this offseason. The New York Jets, an offense that was in serious need of adding some playmakers, quickly pounced on him and brought him into the fold. Johnson blamed last season’s “struggles” on a torn meniscus that he suffered in Week 3 and played through for the remainder of the season. Despite the injury, he still put up 1,422 total yards and 10 touchdowns making him a top-10 fantasy running back in 2013. Reports indicate that his role with the Jets varies, ranging from a “change of pace back” to a “committee back” and a back who gets “all the carries he can handle.” The truth is likely that Johnson will lead all running backs in touches but Chris Ivory and even Bilal Powell will see significant touches as well to help keep him fresh. Johnson has at times lined up at receiver during training camp and his abilities in the passing game will exploited in offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinwig’s west coast scheme. His knee is no longer considered a concern after offseason surgery. He has already participated in contact drills and was reported to look like the “Chris Johnson of old.” Fantasy owners need to remember, though, that he is now the old Chris Johnson, which is a very different thing. He’s worth taking a chance on as your RB3, but given the talk of RBBC, he could see some down weeks if you have to start him on a regular basis.

RB Chris Ivory
(2013 RB Rank—#37, 6.4 FPts/G)

Chris Ivory was last offseason’s big acquisition at the running back position. After a slow start, due to suffering a hamstring injury during training camp, Ivory showed to be a capable feature back. In Week 6 and Week 9, the Jets upset two of the league’s top teams, the Patriots and the Saints. Ivory gained 243 yards with a touchdown during that hot streak. Following Week 9, he was an important part of the Jets’ offense, but his lack of usage in the passing game and the Jets lack of scoring opportunities limited his fantasy value. This season the offense should be much improved and Ivory could see more goal-line opportunities but the presence of Chris Johnson will put a serious cap on his fantasy value. Ivory could be a decent mid- to late-round stash, whose value could rise with a Johnson injury, but otherwise he doesn’t pack much bang for your buck.

WR Eric Decker
(2013 WR Rank—#8, 12.2 FPts/G)

No player’s value likely dropped more than Eric Decker’s this offseason. Switching from Peyton Manning to Geno Smith at quarterback will do that. On the positive side, Decker will no longer compete with Demaryius Thomas, Wes Welker and Julius Thomas for targets in the passing game. On the negative side, Decker will no longer have Thomas, Welker and Thomas drawing attention away from him. Decker’s detractors will likely call him a product of Manning; however, he is a solid wide receiver in his own right. As a second-year player he managed to put up a 44-612-8 stat line despite playing mostly with Tim Tebow under center. Looking a bit deeper, during the first four weeks of that season Decker caught 20 passes for 270 yards and four touchdowns when Kyle Orton was at quarterback. That put him on pace for an 80-1,080-16 stat line over a full season. Decker will likely not reach 16 touchdowns in 2014 but 80 receptions and 1,000 yards are reachable goals with even a minimal jump from Smith during his sophomore season. The fact that Decker should be the focus of opposing defenses does present its problems and the team will need third-year WR Stephen Hill to step up his game and help create space underneath by drawing coverage deep.

WR Jeremy Kerley
(2013 WR Rank—#63, 6.0 FPts/G)

Jeremy Kerley could be the biggest beneficiary of the Jets offseason acquisition of Eric Decker. Stretched as a “go to” wide receiver, Kerley still performed admirably and the passing game looked much better when he was on the field last season than when he missed time. Ideally, Kerley will man the slot for the Jets where his quickness, sharp route running and sure hands works the best. In PPR leagues, Kerley could be a draft-day bargain in the late rounds as he has the trust of his quarterback and the passing game should be more effective than last season where he lead the team with 523 yards receiving on 43 catches, despite only playing 12 games.

WR Stephen Hill
(2013 WR Rank—#103, 3.4 FPts/G)

Entering his third season, it’s hard to consider Stephen Hill anything more than a bust so far. His lack of production stands out further when he’s compared to the two other physical freaks that came out of Georgia Tech, Calvin Johnson and Demaryius Thomas. Hill burst on the scene in his first NFL game with five receptions for 89 yards with two scores, but the highlights have been few and far between since. His poor 2013 is blamed on a sore knee that did not allow him to cut, and reports out of training camp have been “outstanding.” Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinwhig has gushed about him and he could be on the verge of taking a big leap. Hill’s struggles have been largely based on health, but he has also displayed questionable hands. Some key drops in big situations have soured many Jet fans on Hill, but at 6’5” (he reportedly grew an inch this offseason) and 215 lbs. with impressive speed, if he can stay healthy and limit his miscues the sky could be the limit. In deep leagues, a late-round flier could wind up paying dividends.

TE Jeff Cumberland
(2013 TE Rank—#26, 5.3 FPts/G)

The Jets drafted rookie tight end Jace Amaro in the second round of the NFL draft, after resigning incumbent Jeff Cumberland to a three-year, $5.7 million contract. All reports from camp indicate that Amaro has looked lost while adjusting to the pro game, meaning Cumberland is likely to hold onto his starting spot at the beginning of the season. That does not mean he should be on your fantasy roster. At 6’4” and 260 lbs., Cumberland has surprising timed speed and the team feels that he could take the next step into becoming a matchup nightmare. It’s a long shot that it will happen though, as despite his decent 40 time when he was a prospect, Cumberland appears to lumber when on the field and he hasn’t shown reliable hands. The team also has last preseason’s star with the Patriots, Zach Sudfeld on the roster further complicating things. One would need to be in a fairly deep league to even consider Cumberland – or any Jet tight end – on draft day.

Powered by