This post is quite regrettably yet still without sarcasm filed under “value mining.” In the nearly two-month existence of our now only new-ish fantasy leaning football talking space, that category is usually dedicated to finding gems that are at least partially hidden, or in some way discovering value where it didn’t otherwise exist on the waiver wire, or through trades.
Sadly, there’s a very real and very frightening possibility that Terrell Owens — who publicly prodded the Jets to employ him last night on Twitter — would be an upgrade over any receiver currently rostered by the Jets. That of course excludes Stephen Hill, the rookie who could return next week from a hamstring injury that’s kept him out for two games. But who ya got between a 38-year-old who was previously passed on by the Seahawks, or Clyde Gates and Jason Hill? The latter two names are the receivers signed by the Jets instead of Owens. They had a combined two receptions for 37 yards last night, and Hill had a glaring drop in the first quarter on a rare perfect spiral from the arm of the Tebow, a potentially momentum-swinging catch since anything Tebow does in a meaningful game is considered a heavenly feat of strength.
I’m not saying that a decaying and aging receiver is definitely better than Gates or Hill, or Chaz Schilens and Jeremy Kerley, the two wideouts who were really, seriously Mark Sanchez’s top targets last night with Santonio Holmes gone for the year, and both Hill and Dustin Keller out again. I am saying that the mere fact that we can’t immediately laugh uproariously and rule Owens out is a fitting statement about how far the Jets’ offense has descended into the depths of historical embarrassment.
I’m not alone either. Yahoo’s Doug Farrar watched Owens’ failed Seahawks audition in which he looked every bit as old as his birth certificate and forehead wrinkles indicate, and he wasn’t able to create any separation against preseason future grocery store employees. Yet he still thinks that not only could the Jets do worse, they are doing worse.
Then there’s Rex Ryan, the man who’s tasked with making such a decision. He chose to neither confirm or deny an interest in Owens, saying only that “you never say never.”
Translation: we can’t get any lower, or embarrass ourselves any more. So yeah, meh.
Owens would only be own-able in the deepest, most unhealthy formats which raise divorce rates and create fatherless children. But even entertaining that thought in any format shows how thin the Jets are at the position, and how little support Sanchez is receiving.
The masses are asking for Tebow, and fantasy owners are too because even though the culture around him is intolerable in real life, football Jesus can save a fake season. We know this because it happened last year, and we still have faith in the utmost source of faith despite significantly reduced odds of a similar Tebow march to a far away promised land due to the lack of respectable weapons at his disposal.
And thus we’ve completed our circle and arrived again at the Sanchez problem, which is also the reason for the Owens question. Sanchez has been awful. That is not a subject for debate, as it’s the reason why sheer desperation will eventually prompt a Tebow transition, giving Jets fans the quarterback they deserve. But for every stat you toss out which illustrates Sanchez’s unique level of suck, there’s one showing how much his receivers have matched his supreme awfulness.
Let’s play that game together. Numbers!
- Sanchez’s league low 48.4 completion percentage is six points worse than the next guy (Andrew Luck at 54.2 percent). He’s also now quite impressively put together four straight games with a sub 50.0 completion percentage, becoming the first QB since 1999 to accomplish that feat while attempting at least 25 passes per game.
- Among NFL receivers with at least 10 targets, two of the bottom three in catches per target play for the Jets.
- Sanchez’s passer rating is 66.6. Save us from our fiery demons, Tebow.
- But what of that run game which barely exists? Excluding a QB sneak by Sanchez, last night the Jets gave a carry to five different players, and on 21 carries they had 68 yards (3.2 YPC). Shonn Greene is still just the worst, as he’s averaging 2.9 YPC, and he’s had three games when his longest run was less than 10 yards.
Both elements are working together to create the spiral of suck that is the Jets, and Sanchez’s career. So yes, sadly, Owens could be an upgrade.