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Why offense should be base two tight ends

December 31, 2016; Glendale, AZ, USA; Clemson Tigers tight end Jordan Leggett (16) against the Ohio State Buckeyes in the 2016 CFP semifinal at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
December 31, 2016; Glendale, AZ, USA; Clemson Tigers tight end Jordan Leggett (16) against the Ohio State Buckeyes in the 2016 CFP semifinal at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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The New York Jets need to run their base offense in 12 personnel (one running back, two tight ends, two wide receivers) in 2017.

The New York Jets have two capable pass catching tight ends on their roster. In addition, they currently don’t have a fullback.

According to Pro Football Focus (via Peter King of MMQB), from 2008 – 2015, there was an increase in the use of packages with five or move defensive backs on the field in the NFL. It went from 43.4% in 2008 to 63.4% in 2015.

This change is clearly to counteract the proliferation of increased 11 personnel (one back, one tight end, three wide receivers). With that comes the increased use of spread offense concepts in the NFL.

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The Jets should counter this trend. Many teams are building their rosters with depth at safety and corner to match up better given the trend of the NFL becoming more of a passing league.

New offensive coordinator John Morton comes from the New Orleans Saints, and their offense used their tight ends as weapons. When running 12 personnel it gives the offense a lot of flexibility:

  1. It’s a much better formation to run out of
  2. It allows for more play action because it appears to be a power run formation
  3. It creates mismatches for the tight ends to exploit in the passing game

Newly drafted tight end Jordan Leggett can also act as a third wide receiver because of his run after the catch ability. So, it’s not necessary for the Jets to play a lot of 11 personnel, but they can play their base offense from 12, and keep their offensive sets balanced.

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