3 teams on the rise
New York Jets
There’s a lot to like about what the Jets did in the offseason, but it all started with hiring the right coach. Todd Bowles has strong credentials, and the Jets have provided him an outstanding defense. They’re deep at cornerback with the additions of Darrelle Revis, Antonio Cromartie and Buster Skrine, and potentially have a very good defensive line. Whoever plays quarterback will have good weapons to throw to in Brandon Marshall, Eric Decker and Devin Smith.
Joe Philbin is on the hot seat this year, and there won’t be any excuses with Miami built to win now. Even beyond the addition of defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, the Dolphins added some more suitable pieces around quarterback Ryan Tannehill — such as tight end Jordan Cameron and receivers DeVante Parker, Greg Jennings and Kenny Stills. If Philbin can’t get the job done this season, Miami will be a very attractive landing spot for a head coach next offseason.
The Raiders won’t make the playoffs this year. But they are making enough good moves to justify their being a team on the rise. They’ve added some young talent in the draft over the past two years with a core of quarterback Derek Carr, wide receiver Amari Cooper and linebacker Khalil Mack. They’re going to bother some playoff-contending teams late in the season when they get a chance to put it all together under new head coach Jack Del Rio.