It’s not easy being an NFL fan in New York these days. The Jets have gone 18-30 over the last three years and finished 4-12 a season ago. The Giants, meanwhile, started 0-6 in 2013, 3-9 in 2014 and finished with losing records both times.
And yet, each franchise enters 2015 with a glimmer of hope. The Jets have a new head coach in Todd Bowles, and the Giants have an exciting playmaker in Odell Beckham Jr., who helped Big Blue win three of its final four games last season.
So, which team will have a better training camp? Better yet, which fan base will feel more optimistic about the season entering Week 1?
“The Jets. The Jets’ fan base will feel better,” CBS-NY analyst Steve Overmyer said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “Anytime you add fresh blood, there’s always that initial surge. It happened with Rex Ryan, it happened with Eric Mangini, it happened with Herm Edwards – it always seems to happen. You bring in fresh blood and everybody’s chomping at the bit to impress. They want to learn this new system.”
Bowles, 51, was the defensive coordinator for the Cardinals in 2013 and 2014, during which they became one of the best defenses in football.
“I’ve not actually met Todd Bowles yet, but from all indications, he seems like he’s got such a firm grasp of what he wants this team to be,” Overmyer said. “He’s not bloviating about his record. He’s not a blowhard. He seems to be a much more calmer individual, but he still seems to have that inner fire that you want.”
Indeed, he seems like a good leader. He seems like he’s on top of things. He seems like he has a plan and knows where he wants to go and he’ll get there. His predecessor, by contrast, was a great quote and had a great personality, but sometimes it seemed like he was flying by the seat of his pants.
“Well, there was a reason for that, too,” Overmyer said. “He wanted to be the spotlight so that it wasn’t on Mark Sanchez. He wanted to be the lightning rod. So the more we were talking about Rex Ryan – the more he was on the back pages, the more he made crazy statements – the less we were talking about Mark Sanchez. I don’t want to say they were handling him with kid gloves – which they seemingly did handle him with that – but maybe that’s just what helped Sanchez become a better player. Now that I think about that, that didn’t exactly work, did it?”
The Jets open the season at home against Cleveland on Sept. 13, while the Giants open at Dallas on Sunday Night Football.