Originally posted on Taking Bad Schotz  |  Last updated 12/19/12

Coming into this year, the outlook for the Jets season was not particularly promising. In the preseason, their only offensive touchdown came from their third-string quarterback, Greg McElroy, which caused many to worry about what was to come when the games began to count. Well, with two games to go in the season, the Jets are already eliminated from playoff contention, and have finally replaced their terrible quarterback Mark Sanchez. McElroy takes over the 6-8 Jets in what some believe to be an audition for next season, but is he really the answer? Rex Ryan clearly wanted no part of Tim Tebow, who will almost a certainty request a release or trade from the organization once the season has concluded. Besides the quarterback controversy, there are a plethora of issues that must be handled in this upcoming offseason. Strap in New York, drastic changes are coming. 1. Fire Mike Tannenbaum Photo Credit: Ben Liebenberg / NFL.com The moves that General Manager Mike Tannenbaum has made to try and improve this roster have proven to be dreadful and disappointing. To begin this year’s offseason, Tannenbaum decided to not resign wide receiver Plaxico Burress, even though he was the main reason the Jets were tops in the league in red zone offense during the 2011 campaign. Instead, he opted to draft Stephen Hill in the 2nd round of the draft, putting a ton of pressure on the rookie wide out, which would turn out to be ill-advised. Next, Tannenbaum drafted defensive end Quinton Coples in hopes of finding that pass rusher that could disrupt Tom Brady. Instead, Coples has turned into another Vernon Ghoslton disappointment, and the guy the Jets should have drafted, Chandler Jones, is having a very successful season in Foxboro. The Jets GM then decided to trade for Tim Tebow, in what many believed hinted at an open quarterback competition. Instead, it turned into a circus where no one in the organization knew what the hell to do with him. He also fired offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer and brought in Miami’s Tony Sparano to insert the wildcat offense into the Jets plans. Tebow was thought to run this wildcat to perfection and become a red zone star, but whenever Tebow was inserted, it seemed awkward and had no real sense of direction. Schottenheimer signed on to be the offensive coordinator in St. Louis, and has drastically improved Sam Bradford as a quarterback. Some say Schotty has positioned himself to be a head coach next season, possibly in Cleveland, but what is certain is that Sanchez’s play deteriorated once he left the team. Sanchez was given a three year extension following the Tebow deal which basically ended all hope of a quarterback competition at that point in the season. Now, after Sanchez’s more than awful season, Rex Ryan has benched him in favor of Greg McElroy; it seems an almost certainty that the Jets will eat Mark’s remaining salary and release him at the end of the year. If the Jets had not extended Sanchez, it would have only cost New York his $2.5 million remaining rookie bonus to cut him. So extending Sanchez was essentially a $15 million mistake. This will kill their salary cap which is already $18 million over their limit, and there is nobody else to blame except Tannenbaum. All in all, Tannenbaum’s decisions have fallen through and there seems to be no other alternative action than to fire him. Now who replaces him? Former Indianapolis Colts GM Bill Polian comes to mind, but at this point, that is only speculation. 2. Fire Tony Sparano Photo Credit: Mike Graham/Treasure Coast Newspapers  One of Tannenbaum’s poor signings was offensive coordinator Tony Sparano. Sparano brought with him the wildcat offense, which never panned out in New York. He had no idea how to incorporate Tim Tebow and the wildcat with Mark Sanchez and the traditional offense. Whenever Tebow came in, the offense became ineffective and awkward. It hampered Sanchez’s rhythm (not to cut him any slack) and quarterbacks in the NFL need rhythm to excel. Sparano signed a three year deal worth only $500,000 so cutting him won’t be a huge money loss. I do think Rex Ryan stays on for at least one more season, but a new offensive coordinator is necessary, along with a new quarterback. Potential replacements for Sparano could be Oregon’s Chip Kelly or the Charger’s Norv Turner. 3. Sign a Legitimate Quarterback Photo Credit: David Maialetti / Philly Staff With the virtual guarantee that Sanchez will be out of New York before next season, there is an obvious need for a new man under center. Greg McElroy will be the team’s starter for the next two games, but I cannot really see him being the future of the team. The Jets owe it to their fans to make a notable addition to their roster that could give them hope for next season. Luckily for the Jets, there are several names out there that could realistically be part of Gang Green come this offseason. Some of these names are Michael Vick, Matt Flynn, Kirk Cousins, and Alex Smith. Michael Vick appears to be on his way out of Philadelphia and is looking for a new home. What better way to make a splash than to sign one of the most exciting players to watch in the league? It is a long shot, but Vick would be playing behind a better offensive line than in Philly and he could turn the Jets’ “weapons” into legitimate threats. Matt Flynn is over in Seattle, but the Seahawks decided to ignore the large contract they signed him to and started Russell Wilson over him. With Wilson having the Seahawks positioned for a playoff run, it appears that the Seahawks will look for trade value from Flynn in the offseason. He is a very good quarterback with a strong ability to throw the ball down field. Flynn has experience after being the under-study to Aaron Rodgers for several seasons, but he has yet to have a starting gig. The Jets would give him that, the only question mark is his remaining salary that the Jets would have to consume. Kirk Cousins, in his few appearances this season, has excelled to the surprise of many. With the ailing Robert Griffin III being sidelined several times this year, Cousins has led the ‘Skins to a 2-1 record. After his first appearance against Atlanta, which resulted in a 7 point loss, Cousins beat the Ravens late and most recently blew out the Browns. He has caught NFL teams’ eyes and with Robert Griffin III ahead of him, it appears the Redskins will shop him around in the offseason. Cousins could be acquired for cheap value and does not possess a contract that would hurt the Jets salary cap at all (4 years, $2.5 million). The last option is Alex Smith. Smith was the starter for the 49ers over the last six seasons, but recently lost his job after suffering a concussion. Colin Kaepernick has thrived since Smith’s injury and Head Coach Jim Harbaugh has decided to go with Kaepernick for the foreseeable future. The 49ers are now considered to be the best team in the NFL, although that title seems to change every week. Smith appears to be on his way out and could probably be acquired for cheap draft picks during the offseason. Out of these four quarterbacks I could probably see the Jets making a serious run at Smith because he is proven and can be traded for cheap value. Any of these four men would better suit the Jets than anything they have now. 4. Draft Offensive Weapons Photo Credit: AP Photo/Dino Vournas It is clear that the Jets’ offense was their main problem, plaguing them throughout the entire year. Obviously the quarterback position needs to be addressed, but other than that the Jets never really had a weapon for opposing defenses to game-plan against. In the upcoming draft the Jets must address this problem and find pieces that will make this offense thrive once again. Currently sitting at 6-8, the Jets own the 14th pick in the 1st round of the 2013 NFL Draft, if the season ended today. At this pick, I would turn to potential stud receivers such as California’s Keenan Allen, Baylor’s Terrance Williams, Clemson’s DeAndre Hopkins, USC’s Robert Woods, and West Viriginia’s Tavon Austin. All of these receivers have enormous speed and are excellent pass catchers. There is no guarantee that they will be available at the Jets’ pick, but they should absolutely be targeted. I would advise trading up in the second round and go after running backs such as Stanford’s Stepfan Taylor, Wisconsin’s Montee Ball, and Oklahoma State’s Joseph Randle. The Jets need a make-over and the NFL Draft is a perfect place to do it. Go big or go home. -Huberman

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