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Five Jets Featured in ESPN's NFL MVP Top 100

CB Sauce Gardner, WR Garrett Wilson Crack the Top 50


ESPN Sports Analytics Writer Seth Walder ranked the 100 most valuable players of the 2023 NFL season and his list included five players from the Jets: CB Sauce Gardner, WR Garrett Wilson, DT Quinnen Williams, LB Quincy Williams and RB Breece Hall.

Gardner, who last Friday was named to The Associated Press First Team All-Pro for a second consecutive time, came in at No. 26 in Walder's rankings. He was the top-rated cornerback and ninth-highest ranked defender.

"Gardner excelled at preventing targets – his 13% target rate was third-best among outside corners – and he ranked second to [Jaylon] Johnson in yards per coverage snap allowed (0.8), per NFL Next Gen Stats," Walder wrote. "While we don't have individual open scores for defensive backs, we have team-level open scores, and the Jets ranked first by far (81) in the category. It's a reflection of the rest of their secondary, too, but that number is another sign that Gardner is a stellar player."

Wilson, the 2022 Offensive Rookie of the Year, put together a second consecutive 1,000-yard receiving season with 1,042 yards and 85 receptions. Walder placed Wilson No. 45 in his rankings and the 10th-highest rated wide receiver.

"After sharing my initial list with a few trusted sources and colleagues to get feedback, multiple NFL team staffers independently noted I was severely underrating Wilson and that he had been one of the best wide receivers in the league," Walder wrote. "It's just that his play was shrouded by the misery that was the Jets' offense.

"When I looked closer, we had quantitative evidence to back up what they were seeing, too. Wilson ranked sixth in open score (83), the most important of the three receiver tracking metrics. If a receiver does his job and gets open, that's value – even if Zach Wilson or Tim Boyle don't throw him the ball."

Quinnen Williams, named a Pro Bowler for the second straight season, ranked 63rd. Quincy Williams, coming off his first All-Pro selection being named to the first team this season, was ranked 76th. Quinnen Williams was the No. 6-highest rated defensive tackle and Quincy Williams the No. 3 linebacker.

Quinnen Williams registered his lowest sack total (5.5) since his rookie season, but he was the No. 3-rated interior lineman by Pro Football Focus. In addition, he posted 11 tackles for loss, 1 less than his career-high. Quincy Williams recorded 139 tackles – 13th-most in the NFL – and 10 passes defensed – second-most among linebackers.

Hall, finally, was Walder's 81st-ranked player and the No. 2 running back behind the 49ers' Christian McCaffery.

"Despite playing in a nonfunctional offense, Hall managed to finish second among running backs in total yards (rushing plus receiving) with 1,585," Walder wrote. "He also recorded 146 rush yards over expectation, per NFL Next Gen Stats, more than backs who might have been considered here, such as Raheem Mostert, James Cook, Kyren Williams, Isiah Pacheco or Derrick Henry."

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