Fantasy Power Rankings No. 28 – New York Jets
It’s been an offseason of change for the Jets – what with Rex Ryan moving to a new team in the AFC East, Darrelle Revis returning to the fold, and Marshall beefing up the receiving corps – but it hasn’t helped them slide up the rankings. The team finished the 2014 season ranked 26th.
Heading into the 2015 season, the Jets offer fantasy football owners 73.1 percent as much value as the average NFL team. Compared to the NFL’s best team (in terms of fantasy football riches), the Jets only offer fantasy owners about half the value – 50.7 percent.
You’ll have to monitor the team’s quarterback situation throughout training camp and the preseason as it remains unclear if Gang Green will roll with Geno Smith or Ryan Fitzpatrick, but both are borderline QB2 options. Neither player will carry your team to a championship, but their receivers are attractive enough that these quarterbacks will warrant some consideration from fantasy football owners. With that said, their value will largely be tied to their weekly matchups.
The real reason the Jets are near the bottom of the rankings – and yes, there’s something worse than deciding between Geno Smith and Ryan Fitzpatrick – is the lack of a backfield. Chris Ivory is the only Jets running back that carries any fantasy value heading into the new season, and even that’s an optimistic way to look at it.
Ivory is a borderline flex option that, while rosterable, will probably be on your bench most weeks. Bilal Powell is also on the Jets, and he may be worth a desperation fill-in on bye weeks because he’ll catch a couple of passes each week, but the two-headed monster of Ivory and Powell is as bad as it gets. In fact, no team’s group of running backs offers fantasy footballers less than the New York Jets’.
By far the best thing the Jets have going for them is their receiving group, but we need to put that in perspective. While the combination of Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker is definitely the best thing about the Jets for us fantasy degenerates, the duo isn’t ready to take the league by storm. Marshall and Decker form the 14th most valuable receiving group from a fantasy football perspective – respectable, but average.
Final standings from 2014 would have you believe Decker was a borderline WR2 or solid flex option, as he finished the season as the 26th highest-scoring receiver, but that’s a misleading line. His final positioning was buoyed largely by a meaningless Week 17 game (most fantasy championships take place in Week 16) in which he caught 10 passes for 221 yards and a touchdown. If we eliminate Week 17 from the mix, Decker was the 38th highest-scoring receiver, making him more of a weak flex player.
With Marshall now in town, Decker moves back to his familiar position as a team’s No. 2 wideout. Even in his “reduced” role, he should be able to put up similar numbers to last season. In fact, we currently have Decker and Marshall poised to post similar numbers this year.
The hope, of course, is that Decker will be more consistent – or at least that his “big” weeks come while it still counts. He’ll be up for flex consideration on a regular basis.
Marshall is in a similar boat. His value will be largely tied to the specific matchups, making him a flex option with WR2 upside. He is not the player he once was, but he’ll be a key target in the redzone and is still capable of stringing together a few big games.
And that’s really all the Jets bring fantasy owners: a quarterback controversy that will end in mediocrity either way, the worst backfield in the league, and a respectable, but not spectacular, wide receiving corps.