The New York Jets had a quality defense last season. They have two very good veteran receivers in Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker. They have a promising tight end, Jace Amaro, coming back from a lost season. This would all make Jets fans feel pretty good if the quarterback situation didn't seem like a complete disaster.
The Jets and the team's starting quarterback last season, Ryan Fitzpatrick, have been dancing around contact terms for months. But as of now, Fitzpatrick remains a free agent, even though he says he wants to come back. Once a mediocre backup, Fitzpatrick has put up the best performances of his career in the past two seasons. He would be a colossal upgrade over the quarterbacks left on the Jets' roster.
Geno Smith was awful in his first two seasons and apparently lost the Jets' locker room before he lost his job last season. The selection of Christian Hackenberg in the second round was roundly disparaged by Draft Twitter. Third-stringer Bryce Petty didn't even understand how NFL defenses work when he was drafted out of Baylor last year. Jets fans lament: This has got to be the worst depth chart any team has had at the position in years.
Actually, it's not.
I went through rosters from the past 10 years, looking at where each NFL team's quarterback depth chart stood at the beginning of the season. And it's remarkable just how many really awful quarterback situations there have been.
Here are the 10 worst since 2007 based on what we knew about the players at the time. Veterans were judged by their recent performance in advanced stats, including ESPN's Total QBR and Football Outsiders' DYAR and DVOA (explained here). Young players from the first three rounds were judged by Football Outsiders' QBASE projections if they were chosen in the top 100 picks, and draft position if they were taken later.
10. 2016 Cleveland Browns
Perhaps Hue Jackson can somehow find a way to unlock the potential Robert Griffin III showed as a rookie, when he ranked third in the NFL with a 75.6 QBR. But Griffin fell to 42.1 in 2013 and 33.5 in 2014, then lost his job to Kirk Cousins.