New York Jets owner Woody Johnson is desperate for his team to become a winner. He has opened up the checkbook previously for general manager Joe Douglas and head coach Robert Saleh to bring in the players to make that happen and he is willing to do it once again.
The Jets’ 12-year drought without a playoff appearance is the longest in the NFL. It looked like that streak would be snapped this season before a late-season swoon knocked them out of the playoff picture. New York lost six games in a row to close out the season and seven out of their last eight.
A big reason for their struggles to close out the year was their offense not being able to score points. The Jets failed to score a touchdown in their final three games of the season, which was likely a big part of why offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur was relieved of his duties earlier this week.
LaFleur looked in over his head at times as the offensive coordinator, but there is only so much that a coach can do without a competent quarterback leading the way. Zach Wilson has bombed since being the No. 2 overall pick in 2021 and while Mike White and Joe Flacco had their moments, they also have some limitations.
Looking to amend that problem, Johnson made a bold statement earlier this week. He is willing to spend whatever it takes to find a solution at quarterback and believes that is the only thing holding the Jets back from being a contender.
“Absolutely,” Woody Johnson said to a group of reporters in his office Thursday. “We’ve got a cap, so there’s an amount you can spend. But, yeah, yeah. That’s kind of the missing piece.”
Luckily for the Jets, some options would represent sizable upgrades for them at quarterback. Tom Brady, Jimmy Garoppolo and Lamar Jackson are set to be free agents. Aaron Rodgers and Derek Carr are potential trade candidates. Carr could also become a free agent should the Las Vegas Raiders not find a trade partner for him.
Woody Johnson believes, “this team is loaded and ready to go,” despite the struggles of their offense in 2022. Wilson, who was supposed to be the franchise quarterback, was benched twice in his sophomore campaign and looks like he will be a backup in 2023.
The Jets have $35 million invested in him, so it will be pricey if he becomes the backup. But, as Johnson stated, money isn’t the issue. If he feels upgrading at quarterback is what will help put this team over the top, he will spend whatever it takes to make that happen.
Despite the lack of team success, the Jets are a team that should be attractive to potential targets. They have a star in the making in Garrett Wilson at wide receiver and when healthy, an offensive line with a ton of potential.
Running back Breece Hall also showed a lot of promise before tearing his ACL. Now, it is all about finding the piece to bring it together as Woody Johnson is willing to open up the checkbook to close the deal.