The New York Jets surprised many people by going 8-8 last season, relying almost solely on their defense to accomplish the feat. Despite a rookie quarterback and not a single notable playmaker, head coach Rex Ryan kept the team afloat, earning himself a contract extension in the process.
Going into this offseason, New York had plenty of cap space and obvious needs, but so far has been pretty silent. Outside of landing wide receiver Eric Decker on a five-year, $36.25 million deal, the Jets have failed to add an impact player, especially at cornerback. This is something that is not sitting well with Ryan, who is reportedly pissed at general manager John Idzik, per Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News.
Since hiring Ryan in 2009, the Jets have enjoyed great corner play for the most part with Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie. However, they have done a poor job drafting the position, wasting a first round pick on Kyle Wilson and then last year, taking Dee Milliner in the top 10 picks before benching him repeatedly for poor play.
Wilson has played in all 64 games since being drafted four years ago, but has yet to make a true difference. He has three interceptions in his career, playing much of his time in the slot. Milliner had 56 tackles and three interceptions in 2013, but Ryan yanked him out of multiple games for blown assignments. While the former Alabama star can certainly turn it around, things were ugly out of the gate.
Going into free agency, New York had options including Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Aqib Talib, Alterraun Verner and others. Rodgers-Cromartie even visited the Jets, only to sign with the other tenant of MetLife Stadium.
New York has not made any upgrades yet to the defense, even though they might only be a piece or two away from being dominant. The Jets re-signed linebacker Calvin Pace but have not brought in a safety to replace the ancient Ed Reed. Idzik might be waiting for the draft to fill holes, which is somewhat wise considering the incredible depth of this class. Still, it is a gamble when you're picking 19th.
There is still plenty of time remaining in free agency, but the options are dwindling for Ryan and Idzik.