The AFC East is there for the taking with Tom Brady gone, so the New York Jets will look to step up against a more difficult schedule to contend for the division title.
It has been a long time since the New York Jets have made the playoffs, a fact the team’s fanbase isn’t quick to forget. The Jets haven’t reached the postseason since 2010 when they lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship Game, a nine-year drought that is the third-longest active drought in the NFL.
There were signs of growth towards the end of the season, however, as the Jets rebounded from a 1-7 start to go 6-2 in the second half. Quarterback Sam Darnold looked much better as the season progressed, offering hope that a big leap forward is possible in his third year in the league.
General manager Joe Douglas has taken a measured approach to the offseason, avoiding flashy signings in favor of a bulk approach designed to improve the team’s depth. There isn’t a ton of top-end upside in the Jets’ moves, but New York’s floor is significantly better than it was in 2019.
The AFC East is wide open now that Tom Brady is throwing passes in Tampa Bay, so it would be nice for the Jets to take advantage in 2020. New York hasn’t won its own division since 2002, but with New England vulnerable, the opportunity is there to make a big leap forward.
The challenge for the Jets comes in the fact that they will have a much more difficult schedule than they did last season. They are slated to face both West divisions, meaning a lot of long road trips and matchups against both Super Bowl teams await them in 2020.
Here is New York’s schedule release: