I feel better about the Jets than I do about the Chiefs.
Not for this season, mind you. I'm not crazy.
Not even for the near future or long-term prospects. There is just too wide of a disparity in talent between the two clubs, as well as a difference in track records among the men running these two organizations for me to think that New York is necessarily in a better position than Kansas City right now.
But I do feel better about the way in which the Jets have handled this offseason than I do about the Chiefs.
The Jets went 10-6 in 2015, including a stellar run in the second half of the season that came up just short of a playoff berth when they lost in windy Buffalo in the last game of the season. General manager Mike Maccagnan saw his Jets playing as well as almost anyone in football down the stretch and elected to give that group of core players another chance in 2016, and it's hard to blame him for that decision.
It didn't go well. Wide receiver Eric Decker got hurt, quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick didn't play nearly as well as he had the year before, and even a perennial stalwart like Muhammad Wilkerson didn't come to play after getting his big pay day. All this culminated in a disappointing 5-11 season.
It didn't work out, but it's hard, even in hindsight, to criticize Maccagnan for trying to make another playoff push in 2016 given how 2015 finished.
Based on a combination of the results of last season and an aging roster, the Jets have essentially done a clean sweep this offseason. Fitzpatrick, Brandon Marshall, Nick Mangold and, more recently, guys like Eric Decker and David Harris are all gone. While the timing of the Harris release can be debated, the reasoning isn't real complicated: The Jets are rebuilding.
Which is exactly what they should be doing and everybody knows it.
The Chiefs, meanwhile, are trying to do both at the same time, which I suppose is admirable but also one of the most difficult things to do in professional sports in general and the NFL in particular.
Kansas City has been one of the six or seven best teams in the NFL the past two seasons and has been a score away from making the conference championship game each season. The Chiefs are right there.
Plus, they still have their core group of players intact, many of whom should be studs for years to come like Justin Houston, Travis Kelce and Marcus Peters.
Despite their recent success and their impressive roster, the Chiefs elected to focus on the future in the NFL Draft instead of the present. They traded next year's first round pick and this year's third rounder to move up and select quarterback Patrick Mahomes out of Texas Tech.
Now, if Mahomes ends up being the Chiefs' franchise signal caller for over a decade, then what they did is probably worth it and maybe the story should just end at that.
But it doesn't.
The Chiefs have a team ready to win now and rather than getting two players this year that could potentially help them get over the hump like all the Falcons draft picks did last season, they began building for 2018 and beyond. Maybe it's just the former player in me, but I don't like it. Not one bit. And I'd be very surprised if guys like Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson, two veterans that don't know how many snaps they've got left, did either.
As if there were any doubts about their intentions, the Chiefs more recently surprisingly released their best wide receiver in Jeremy Maclin. Operation 2018 and beyond is in full effect and if you don't think it bothers the players, consider quarterback Alex Smith saying he was "shocked" by the news. For a crafty vet as polished as Smith, that's code in my mind for him expressing displeasure with the decision.
Maybe the Chiefs have decided internally that they simply aren't good enough to get any further with Smith at the helm of this group of players. While I don't agree, that's totally fine and within their right if they feel that way. But then why not start to move on from some of these older players and get future assets that will be there to help Mahomes when he is ready to hopefully lead the Chiefs to the promised land, perhaps as early as 2019? Why not try to trade Hali and Johnson and others in order to put Mahomes in the best position for big success?
Instead, the Chiefs are kind of -- but not really -- trying to win this year and definitely -- but not fully -- committed to winning in the future. They're trying to have their cake and eat it, too, and that is not easy.
You could argue that the Chiefs aren't much worse off than they were last year after releasing Maclin, but you can't really argue that they are actually better, can you?
Keeping Maclin in hopes of a healthy and productive year while drafting players that could help their team win this year would've made the team better, but that's not what Chiefs elected to do. They elected to build for the future. Kind of.
Perhaps it's as simple as the difference in where these two teams are in providing the clarity that it does, but I am much more on board with the Jets' clearly-defined approach than the Chiefs' jack-of-all trades one.
Only time will tell how it works out for both.