INDIANAPOLIS -- Caught up with former general manager-turned-ESPN analyst Bill Polian, who provided his State of the New York Jets:
“The good news is that Rex (Ryan) is always going to have a defense that’s not only competitive, but pretty damn good -- if not dominant, pretty damn good. I thought they made tremendous improvement on the offensive line. Some of that was personnel, but I think the scheme fit them pretty well. The fact that they went 8-8, with as few quality receivers as they had, speaks to how good the defense was and how good the running game was.
"They wanted to come out and bludgeon you, like they did to the Patriots in New England (Week 2). They made the Patriots say, 'Uncle,' and that was before all the (New England) injuries (on defense). The quarterback (Geno Smith) goes and throws it away. That's what rookie quarterbacks do; they break your heart. But they did the same thing to the Dolphins with all the money on the line in Miami.
“Overall, the Jets are a very competitive, if not dominant team on defense and they run the ball well. If the quarterback can play efficiently ... part of that is giving him some weapons he can count on. If they can do that, I think they can jump to the next level.”