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Happy New Year, JetNation

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Chad Pennington is throwing well, but it’s hard to count on him anymore. Curtis Martin appears to be finished. There isn’t a playmaker in the program.  They won’t be good this year, nor next. – Adrian Wojnarowski Aug 17 2006

On or around September 11, 2005, Herman Edwards and Kansas City GM Carl Petersen met in a Kansas City area restaurant, where they drew up the plans that would inevitably lead to Herm’s dismissal as HC of the NY Jets. Apologists and media propagandists for Herm want you to believe that their wasn’t a plot, that the turn of events that led to Herm becoming HC of the Chiefs, all took place in the space of one short week, in January 2006. Herman Edwards insists that this was the situation, because he can’t accept the fact that so many people have suggested that Herm had his priorities all out of order at the beginning of the 2005 season, and in fact, because he was pre-occupied with orchestrating his escape from NY, the Jets had a disastrous season, finishing 4-12. What actually took place between September 2005 and the last game of the season, we’ll never really know. But we do know that Dick Vermeil retired as HC of the Chiefs on Jan 1 2006, and three days later, Herman Edwards became their HC, conveniently moving his family into a condominium owned and recently vacated by Dick Vermeil.

Who’s out there and available who’s going to do a better job than Edwards already has, the only head coach in Jets’ history to lead them to three playoff appearances in four years? But believe it when we tell you this: Edwards and his staff, none of whom is without faults, are what is keeping this franchise from being the laughingstock it was before Parcells took over. – Mark Canizzaro, December 2005

It was all about the injuries, in 2005. That was the reason perpetuated in the media ad nauseum as to why the Jets collapsed, and finished the season a pathetic 4-12. The injuries were just a case of pure bad luck; it had nothing to do with Herm’s pathetic training camp, or (non-existent) conditioning program. Some of the injuries were probably the result of malingering, yet nobody would dare suggest that Herm’s players would actually quit on him. The cruel irony was that Herm quit on them. He orchestrated his way out of town. His media propagandists continued to fabricate a fairy tale that Woody fired him, and that Herm wanted to stay. They told us that Woody was making a mistake. Many fans believed them.

“It’s going to be done in such a way that’s methodical, well-thought-out and unemotional in a sense that the decisions we make are going to be the best decisions for the organization. There’s a very strong commitment to that – doing whatever it takes and taking as long as it takes to get that done.”
-Eric Mangini

When Eric Mangini was hired as HC, and Mike Tannenbaum replaced the demoted Terry Bradway as GM, the media carried out a campaign of derision and criticism, implying that this was yet one more example of folly that would be added to the long list of Jets historical blunders. They told us that the hire was a desperate move by Woody Johnson, based on his unreasonable fixation with the Patriots. Woody was being naïve, if he thought that by sheer osmosis, A “Bellichik wannabe� like Eric Mangini could infuse New England’s winning program into the Jets organization.

Where are they now, all the experts who threw mud at Eric Mangini, and mocked the New York Jets? Are they off in the corner somewhere, eating humble pie? Of course not. The new spin is this: Herm’s team was 4-12 last year because of injuries, and now Eric simply inherited a healthy team! I’ve heard it said by various talk show hosts on ESPN and WFAN. With the exception of Phil Simms, who publicly stands corrected, to a man -and woman (ARE YOU LISTENING KAREN CROUSE?)- they have diminished the accomplishments of Eric Mangini. Mark Canizzaro said “ I do truly believe that with a healthy Pennington, which Mangini has fortunately had, Edwards would have a very similar record with this group�.

The Jets were on a downward spiral under Herm and Bradway, and I am convinced that had they stayed, the damaged franchise that Mangini and Tannenbaum took over would have been exponentially worse in 2007.

Mangini and Tannenbaum made gutsy moves that would have made Herm and Bradway wet themselves.

The John Abraham trade:

Abraham would have cost almost $8M to franchise him for 1 more year. His new contract with Atlanta was 6 yrs, $45M with about $18M guaranteed. Bradway was shell-shocked after the Jolley debacle, no way would he have pulled the trigger on that trade (and if he had, he would not have gotten a first rounder).

We also would not have had Mangold whose contract is for 5 years, $7.4M. Basically Mangold’s 5-yr contract is the total for one year of John Abraham.

If Herm was still here, Mawae would still be here, and Mangold never would have been drafted. Bradway would have pulled off one of his classics, trading both number ones, to move up and get Reggie Bush. The offensive line would have been completely neglected, as it had in each preceding season, going back to 2001. To suggest otherwise, is to not look at case history. Chad Pennington was able to successfully start 16 games, for the first time in his career. To suggest that Chad would have made it through the season with Herm at the helm, is to ignore case history. The very idea that Eric Mangini “lucked� his way into a healthy Chad Pennington, is ridiculous. Jets beat writers who have suggested that, lack all integrity.

For years, the fans of this team were subjected to perpetual rationalization of Herman Edwards. We were told that his “cover two� defense and his “West Coast� offense were going to need time. When the systems didn’t work, we were told that Herm needs “his players�. We were told that BS for three years. THREE YEARS. And then Herm was given a contract extension, with your blessing, and we the Jets fans, were subjected to two more years of the fraud that is Herman Edwards. Herm took over a 10-6 team and never finished better than 10-6.At best, Herm treaded water for five years. At his worst, he systematically dismantled each unit by position, while exhausting the shelf life out of an aging, veteran core. Mangini took over a 4-12 team, and literally overnight, transformed them into a 10-6 playoff contender, with a new OC, and new DC, implemented new systems, various schemes, and made it work in a relatively short period of time. In spite of not being able to run the ball effectively, or defend the run, the team still found innovative ways to win. When Herm’s teams perpetually came out of TC every season, giving up 233 yards on the ground week after week, all we heard were excuses, from him, and from his media stooges.

Yes Chad has been healthy and that is a big factor in the success but the team handled the situation flawlessly. They made Chad assume some risk when they restructured the contract, they brought in a veteran and high draft choice to compete, and they held a legitimate open competition for the #1 job. Mangini didn’t baby Chad and not play him all pre-season and hand him the job like Herm probably would have done. He also utilized his strengths, letting him do no huddle and change plays from the line, and gave him the best chance to be successful. Is this the same team, as has been stated erroneously in the press? No, I have clearly shown you facts that prove this is not the same team.

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