There is a buzz around the New York Jets that hasn’t been there in a long time. Currently riding the longest playoff drought among the four major sports in North America, Super Bowl talk has been virtually nonexistent. But, this offseason, there is already chatter of the Jets not only breaking that streak but bringing home the Lombardi Trophy.
The biggest need for New York coming into the offseason, according to owner Woody Johnson, was an upgrade at quarterback. The performance of their signal callers derailed what was a promising 2022 campaign and Johnson didn’t want to see that happen again.
General manager Joe Douglas accomplished that goal, acquiring Aaron Rodgers in a trade from the Green Bay Packers. Initial reactions are good, as Rodgers is reportedly the happiest he has been in years.
That is good news for the Jets, who have some expectations being placed on them by people in the football world. They can’t be any higher than the expectations that head coach Robert Saleh has bestowed upon the team as he made a very bold claim before the team’s second OTAs practice.
“In my opinion, I think 32 coaches stand in front of their teams every year and talk about winning a championship,” Saleh said.
“Realistically, there’s maybe six or eight teams that have an actual chance to do it and I do think we are one of those teams.
“But none of it matters unless we take care of it today.”
That is certainly a bold statement from Saleh, who is trying to change the tone. For years the focus was on development and how much progress the younger players made. Now, the team is focused on taking things to another level and winning.
With Rodgers leading the offense, expectations are certainly higher than they have been in a long time for the Jets. There will be some pressure to perform after finishing the 2022 season on a six-game losing streak and dropping seven of their last eight games.
The pieces are certainly in place for the Jets to find success on the field. Everything looks good on paper, but as Saleh said, it doesn’t matter unless it translates to on the field.