VAVEL USA's 2016 NFL Guide: New York Jets team preview
VAVEL USA's 2016 NFL Guide: New York Jets team preview

The 2015 New York Jets were the best team since 2010 when Mark Sanchez still held the reins of the offense; a time where there was an obvious decline on the horizon.

This season, the Jets hope to continue right where they left off, a 10-6 season that highlights an evident growth in talent from previous years. Ryan Fitzpatrick still holds the keys to the offense, and he has the potential to carry his intense performance from last season into this one.

2015 Season

The Jets have always had some credibility as a franchise, but like most New York teams in recent years, they've seen no true success.

The arrival of Fitzpatrick changed the culture on this team tenfold, though. His season as primary QB reshaped the Jets' offense, and should have ultimately brought them to a postseason appearance.

He brought quality passing that coupled well with solid receivers, i.e., Brandon Marshall, whose averages for the season hovered around career highs.

Despite a few scuffles with Darrelle Revis, Marshall kept his cool and should be ready for the season | Source: Tom Szczerbowski - Getty Images North America

Marshall was fourth in receiving yards in the NFL last season, and T-5th in overall receptions. Marshall was also responsible for 14 touchdown receptions with Fitzpatrick as his primary QB. This offensive line is easily capable of carrying over that kind of performance into the 2016 season.

Offseason madness

There were a few injuries that put players on the PUP list, one of which was CB Darrelle Revis, but he is cleared to play as of now.

Revis and Marshall were also a big news piece with regard to their scuffle at camp. Though the two, reportedly, wound up settling the issue quickly, there was a brief instant of deja vu for Jets fans dating back to Geno Smith's jaw being broken. Though Marshall and Revis got heated with each other, that could prove beneficial in the long run when games are on the line.

Geno Smith was a solid QB in his first couple of seasons, but Fitzpatrick took his thunder. He can still be a valuable asset in the long term. Credit: Rich Schultz/Getty Images North America
Geno Smith was a solid QB in his first couple of seasons, but Fitzpatrick took his thunder. He can still be a valuable asset in the long term | Source: Rich Schultz - Getty Images North America

According to the New York Times, the Jets have four quarterbacks on the depth chart, which could be fruitful to an extent. If Fitzpatrick opens up games strong, then Smith will be an excellent relief, and the remaining two players will simply get their garbage time for developmental purposes.

What to expect this season

The Jets' roster hasn't seen much change, aside from a few rookies taken in the draft. The only major news regarding New York's lineup is the re-signing of both Fitzpatrick and DE Muhammad Wilkerson. Wilkerson recorded a career high in sacks this past season with 12 and maintained close to a career high in tackles for the season.

Matt Forte was signed to a three-year, $12 million contract in the offseason and was recently lifted off the PUP list, so the Jets now have an additional receiver to utilize. Rounding out the offense is Eric Decker, who, like Marshall, held a steady rate of success with Fitzpatrick as his primary QB.

From a defensive standpoint, Revis and Wilkerson will likely be responsible for most of the defense's success, though Revis showed signs of a struggle in summer practices.

2016 outlook

One of the biggest matchups for the Jets would have to be the Buffalo Bills and head coach Rex Ryan, as they handed the Jets two losses in the regular season, one of which was the most critical game of the Jets' season.

Rex Ryan and the Bills caused trouble for the Jets last season, so this should be a revenge year. Credit: Brett Carlsen/Getty Images North America
Rex Ryan and the Bills caused trouble for the Jets last season, so this should be a revenge year | Source: Brett Carlsen - Getty Images North America

For this team to gain some momentum and to see success, Fitzpatrick will have to be much more calculated with his passing, as he displayed some erratic passing in the final game of the season. The receivers just need to keep doing what they do and earn their yards. Likewise, the defense has to keep opposing offenses at bay.

Like any team that isn't the Carolina Panthers or Denver Broncos, the Jets would love to reach the Super Bowl, though an appearance in the playoffs alone would be success enough.

Prediction: Jets finish the season 11-5 and make the postseason

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