The Jets finished 11th in the league in total defense last season, allowing 334.9 yards per game. The team had finished in the top 10 in each of coach Rex Ryan's first four seasons with the team, including No. 1 in 2009, Ryan's first season.
Pace, an 11-year veteran, has been with the Jets since 2008, totaling 274 tackles and 38 sacks in that time. He had a career-high 10 sacks last season.
“There’s a certain type of aggression when we come ... you know we’re going to come with a lot of stuff and teams don’t want to see that,” the linebacker said. “They want to see a vanilla defense, that just lines up and you know where they’re going to be.”
The Seahawks or 49ers might take issue with Pace’s proclamation that Gang Green has the best defense, but there’s no stopping Jets players from voicing their self-belief. “We’re the benchmark when we’re doing well,” Pace said. “I’ll take these guys and Rex and this system any day.”
- Ben Estes