A look at what's going on around the New York Jets:
1. A cool Brees: There has been a lot of speculation about the future of injured New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, who will be 37 with a $27.4 million cap charge in 2016 -- the final year of his contract. It's hard to imagine Brees not finishing his career in New Orleans, but stranger things have happened. If he becomes available next year, he'd be an intriguing option for the Jets if they go into the offseason with an unsettled quarterback situation. Adding a future Hall of Famer to an older, win-now roster wouldn't be the worst idea, as long as he's healthy. Brees also could be a one- or two-year bridge to Bryce Petty. There is a lot of season left, with so many variables, but there is a real possibility the Jets could be in the quarterback market in '16. Ryan Fitzpatrick will be a free agent and Geno Smith never will be the long-term answer. File away this thought.
2. Taking the high road: I liked the way Smith handled questions from the media about Todd Bowles' public endorsement of Fitzpatrick. Smith made it clear he's "not happy" about losing his job, but he said he supports the decision -- a mature approach. Yeah, you could argue he has no right to complain, considering his inconsistent play, but this is a tough deal. Not only did he lose his job because of injury, but the injury was inflicted by a teammate. It's amazing how quickly everything changed. Bowles saw enough in Smith to make him the starter at the beginning of camp, but now, after only two games, the coach is driving the Fitzpatrick bandwagon. The IK Enemkpali punch truly was a life-changing moment for Smith.
3. Lucky bounces: There were eight fumbles in the first two games, and the Jets recovered all eight. What are the odds of that happening? In many cases, a fumble is like a coin flip -- a 50-50 proposition. Yep, sometimes you get lucky. Or unlucky. Two years ago, the Jets recovered only 10 of 33 fumbles. That, too, is hard to figure.
4. The anti-Chip: In Philadelphia, Chip Kelly is getting hammered by critics who say he messed up the roster with bad personnel decisions. In New York, it's the opposite with general manager Mike Maccagnan, whose big moves look great so far. His trades landed Fitzpatrick and Brandon Marshall, the new leaders on offense. In free agency, his most expensive signings were Darrelle Revis and Buster Skrine, major upgrades in the secondary. Does anybody miss Kyle Wilson? Didn't think so. It's still early, but Maccagnan is having a terrific rookie year. He should enjoy it, because the good times can be fleeting. Kelly, who faces the Jets on Sunday, knows better than most.
5. Open season on quarterbacks: ESPN analyst Bill Polian has bemoaned the decline of offensive line play in the league, and his stance is backed up by stats. The leaguewide pressure rate -- the percentage of dropbacks where the quarterback is sacked, under duress or hit -- is way up, according to ESPN Stats & Information. The Jets are bucking the trend, as their pressure rate is one of the lowest in the league. Fitzpatrick has been pressured on only 17 percent of his dropbacks, nine percent below the league average. Why so good? One of the reasons, I think, is because they have a veteran offensive line that includes only one new starter. Continuity has allowed them to get off to a fast start.
6. Rarefied air: Demario Davis is part of a growing trend. For about 12 to 20 minutes a day, he pedals on a stationary bike wearing an elevation-training mask that restricts air flow. He can adjust the oxygen level by increasing his "altitude" -- i.e. simulating bike rides through various mountain ranges, including a trip up Mt. Everest. Davis said he always maxes out on the difficulty factor. It could come in handy against the Eagles' up-tempo offense.
"I get my lungs prepared for long drives and fast tempo," he said. "It's new-age technology. Some guys have to run sprints after practice. You don't have to do that; you can do it on a bike."
7. The glacier offense: The Eagles have the fastest offense in the league based on real time between plays from scrimmage -- 30.6 seconds, according to ESPN Stats. What about the Jets? They ... are ... very ... slow. In fact, they rank 31st at 41.1 seconds. Bowles said he's comfortable with that tempo, saying it reflects their mentality as an offense that relies on power, not speed. From a spectator standpoint, it's great. You can make a quick run to the fridge in between plays.
8. The loneliest ends: One of these weeks, Jeff Cumberland and/or Kellen Davis will actually catch a pass. For now, the Jets and the Jacksonville Jaguars are the only teams with no tight-end receptions. At least the Jaguars are trying; they have six targets. The Jets have only one. No, I don't think the number would be significantly higher if Jace Amaro were healthy.
9. Predictable running game: It shouldn't be that hard to defend the Jets' running game. I mean, everybody knows where they're running -- between the tackles. Only nine of their 63 rushes have come outside the tackles. This is what happens when you don't have running backs with the speed to make plays on the perimeter. Eventually, defenses will pick up on this trend and jam the middle.
10. Out of bad, came good: Bowles spent one season (2012) as an Eagles' assistant under Andy Reid. For the most part, it was a forgettable year. Bowles was promoted to defensive coordinator in the middle of the season -- an impossible job -- and the team finished 4-12. In retrospect, he called it "one of the biggest learning experiences" of his coaching career. He learned a lot by watching Reid, who lost a son that year to a drug overdose.
"Watching Coach Reid stand up there and address the team every day with the tragedy that happened to him and the way the team was going -- and not bat an eye, just made everything status quo and go on as usual -- showed true leadership," Bowles said. "It was all about the team. He never made it about himself. From Coach Reid in that standpoint, I learned a great deal."