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Top 3 reasons why Jets secondary will be tops in the NFL

By William Schneiderhan
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 24: Keenan Allen #13 of the Los Angeles Chargers makes the catch under pressure from Jamal Adams #33 and Marcus Maye #26 of the New York Jets during the second half of an NFL game at MetLife Stadium on December 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Los Angeles Chargers defeated the New York Jets 14-7. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 24: Keenan Allen #13 of the Los Angeles Chargers makes the catch under pressure from Jamal Adams #33 and Marcus Maye #26 of the New York Jets during the second half of an NFL game at MetLife Stadium on December 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Los Angeles Chargers defeated the New York Jets 14-7. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)
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EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – DECEMBER 24: Keenan Allen #13 of the Los Angeles Chargers makes the catch under pressure from Jamal Adams #33 and Marcus Maye #26 of the New York Jets during the second half of an NFL game at MetLife Stadium on December 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Los Angeles Chargers defeated the New York Jets 14-7. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – DECEMBER 24: Keenan Allen #13 of the Los Angeles Chargers makes the catch under pressure from Jamal Adams #33 and Marcus Maye #26 of the New York Jets during the second half of an NFL game at MetLife Stadium on December 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Los Angeles Chargers defeated the New York Jets 14-7. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)

The New York Jets have some of the best young defensive talent in the NFL on their secondary. Here are three reasons why Gang Green may have one of the best defensive secondaries in the NFL this upcoming season.

One of the major themes for many New York Jets seasons can be seen within the team’s stellar defensive play. Gang Green has built the team’s backbone through the defense for many years, and the 2018 season seems as though it will be no different.

While the Jets have added much-needed help to the offensive side of the ball, general manager Mike Maccagnan went out and added more defensive weapons. Of course, this was a smart move because the team saw some players leave, such as Muhammad Wilkerson and Demario Davis.

However, this piece isn’t focused on the Jets defensive line or linebackers. No, this is all about the revamped defensive secondary and how this group can quietly find themselves as one of the best units in the NFL.

The Jets cornerback and safety play may not be a worst to first scenario, but we can expect them to play better than there 2017 performance. The team was tied for second in most passing touchdowns allowed, ranked 10 in total interceptions and placed 12 overall in passing yards allowed per game. Here are the three top reasons why.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – NOVEMBER 26: Cornerback Morris Claiborne #21 of the New York Jets reacts during the second half of the game at MetLife Stadium on November 26, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Carolina Panthers won 35-27. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – NOVEMBER 26: Cornerback Morris Claiborne #21 of the New York Jets reacts during the second half of the game at MetLife Stadium on November 26, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Carolina Panthers won 35-27. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

3. Old Friends and a New Face

Reason number three on how the Jets can be a top passing defense in the league? The re-signing of Morris Claiborne, holding onto Buster Skrine, and drafting Parry Nickerson.

First, Claiborne was seemingly asked to do too much at times last season. He was essentially given the number one role, and he had his ups and downs.

Claiborne still played well enough though, as he tallied one interception and eight passes defended in 15 games. Pro Football Focus ranked him as a poor corner, but he will look to thrive as the number two corner.

Skrine and Nickerson will help because they will both compete for the same slot position. There were times where Skrine seemed unplayable last year, but a little pressure by Nickerson will help both players.

Next: 2. Sophomore seasons of Adams & Maye

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – DECEMBER 24: Keenan Allen #13 of the Los Angeles Chargers makes the catch under pressure from Jamal Adams #33 and Marcus Maye #26 of the New York Jets during the second half of an NFL game at MetLife Stadium on December 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Los Angeles Chargers defeated the New York Jets 14-7. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – DECEMBER 24: Keenan Allen #13 of the Los Angeles Chargers makes the catch under pressure from Jamal Adams #33 and Marcus Maye #26 of the New York Jets during the second half of an NFL game at MetLife Stadium on December 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Los Angeles Chargers defeated the New York Jets 14-7. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)

2. Sophomore seasons of Adams & Maye

The Jets 2017 NFL Draft was headlined by the team’s first and second-round picks. Jamal Adams went Round 1, while Marcus Maye heard his name called Round 2.

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Both these players proved to not only be big-time starters but excellent leaders. The second-year players have the intangibles to take the next step in 2018.

Adams still seems to have the brightest future. He racked up 63 tackles with two sacks in his rookie season.

Maye collected 56 tackles with two picks in his first year. Both of these studs will solidify the safety positions and look to dominate the run game and passing game.

Expect some solid sophomore seasons by both these young players as they’ll easily become the next dynamic duo in the league.

Next: 1. The biggest free agent acquisition of 2018

GLENDALE, AZ – OCTOBER 02: Cornerback Trumaine Johnson #22 of the Los Angeles Rams intercepts the football intended for wide receiver John Brown #12 of the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of the NFL game at University of Phoenix Stadium on October 2, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ – OCTOBER 02: Cornerback Trumaine Johnson #22 of the Los Angeles Rams intercepts the football intended for wide receiver John Brown #12 of the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of the NFL game at University of Phoenix Stadium on October 2, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)

1. The biggest free agent acquisition of 2018

The Jets made a massive splash in free agency when they inked former Los Angeles Rams cornerback Trumaine Johnson. He will be the team’s number one cornerback.

Johnson has seen his interception numbers go down the past two seasons after he picked off seven passes in 2015. This may be why Pro Football Focus has him ranked as an average cornerback.

However, don’t let that dissuade you from thinking Johnson isn’t one of the game’s best at his position. He is a very physical cornerback at 6-2, 213 pounds, which can be seen in his tackle numbers.

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Johnson is the first lockdown, top-notch cornerback the Jets have had since Darrelle Revis. No, he is not Revis, but he will play a major role in the re-vitalization of the Jets secondary, making it one of the top units in the league.

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