The New York Jets went into July with two Pro Bowl players on defense. Now, just like that, they don’t have any. Safety Jamal Adams was traded, and linebacker C.J. Mosley opted out for the 2020 NFL season because of coronavirus pandemic concerns, a double jolt that could wreck the Jets’ season before it starts.
That is unless defensive coordinator Gregg Williams can manufacture enough smoke, mirrors and fire to elevate a unit sorely lacking in playmakers. And the Jets are counting on that. I hate to see Jamal go and C.J. opt out, but at the end of the day we’ve still got some talented guys that play those positions, Jets linebacker Avery Williamson said Wednesday in a videoconference call with reporters. I feel like Gregg Williams is going to put guys in good positions. He’s just going to coach the hell out of them.
This could be one of the biggest challenges of Williams’ 30-year coaching career. This was a flawed unit before the recent departures no proven edge rusher and no lockdown cornerback and it will be harder to camouflage those shortcomings without Adams and Mosley.
Obviously, we’ll miss him this season, but like always, we’ll have the next-man-up mentality, Jets coach Adam Gase said. I feel like we have a lot of depth at that position. Guys will do everything they can to step up and fill the void, and we’ll develop great defensive team chemistry.
While they might be shy on elite talent, the Jets have a few positives to build on. They have a proven system in place, a coach they believe in and a culture that was established last season. The defense was shredded by injuries in 2019, yet it still managed to finish seventh in total yards allowed and second in rushing yards.