Fantasy files: Jets, way cooler in real life than in fantasy

When you look at the New York Jets from 2009, numbers pop out. 607 carries. 12 touchdown passes to 21 interceptions. 19 combined touchdowns given up. We barely remember (ESPN surely doesn’t after ranking Rex Ryan one of the top five coaches in any sport) that the team went 9-7 last year and needed a lot of help to make the playoffs.

403 of those carries are gone. Thomas Jones left and the team let Leon Washington go like he was expendable. Who’s left? Shonn Greene’s the stud in waiting. He’s being drafted like he already had a 1500-yard season. He didn’t catch any passes last year and takes the kind of hits that make people think that he can’t survive 300 carries. He missed part of 2009 due to injury. Who’s left to pick up the slack? You have LaDainian Tomlinson, who averaged 3.3 yards a carry last year. Only due to the Chargers giving him a ton of goal-line carries did he have fantasy value. The rookie Joe McKnight rounds out the group and he hasn’t earned glowing reviews in training camp.

I figured that the team would pass more and run less, but even then they’re going to run the ball at least 500 times. Is this team really going to give a washed-up Tomlinson 200 touches? Can Shonn Green survive 300 carries? At least we don’t have to worry about him catching a lot of balls. McKnight might be Washington lite.

As for the team’s passing game, do not consider it fantasy ready. I might draft Mark Sanchez as a QB3 and hope that he stays on clipboard duty for my fantasy team. He should improve in his second year. I’m steering clear of their entire receiver corps. Few pass attempts means that if there were a WR1 on this team, he wouldn’t be worth a roster spot. Santonio Holmes might be the top guy but he’s missing the first four games, critical for him to establish some rapport with Sanchez. Braylon Edwards seems decades removed from his #3 finish in 2007. Jerricho Cotchery was a decent bye week fill in last year, but he might be the slot guy this year. Dustin Keller has promise but there are a lot of other targets. He probably won’t catch more than 60 balls this year.

The defense/special teams is overvalued as the top ranked crew just because the top ranked D/ST in preseason never finishes number one. The defense will be very good. I’m not reaching for it.

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