The 2012 season was unkind to the New York Jets as inconsistent quarterback play was paired with flaws in their normally solid defense. Those two things created a scenario where the organization needed to part ways with Darrelle Revis in the off-season and move forward, now in the hands of a new general manager.
ESPN's Rich Cimini has taken a look at five players who are most poised to break out for the Jets in 2013 and, after looking at the list, there are two names that jump out.
The first is nose tackle Kenrick Ellis, who seems to be the best-suited to make the leap. His 346-pound frame makes him a natural to play the Jets nose tackle role, but he suffered due to inconsistent performances in 2012. Ellis finished with just 18 tackles, but showed flashes that made some believe could hold down the middle against the better interior offensive lines. He'll need to evolve into an elite run stopper to make the leap, though, and commanding double teams to allow pass rushers to shoot the gap would also help for the future.
Tied to Ellis' future is Quinton Coples, also regarded as a potential breakout player. The 2012 first-round pick led the team in sacks last year with 5.5, but there have been questions about his dedication to the game. Rex Ryan routinely critiques his pass rushers' dedication, too, despite having all the natural tools to be an elite player.
If Eliis is able to open up the line and Coples takes the necessary steps forward to provide double-digit sacks, the Jets' defense should return to prominence quickly.