A few final thoughts on Jets/Cowboys…
Game MVP – It is hard to nail down a specific one, as so many individuals made plays in crucial times. I will go with Plaxico Burress, who came to life in the second half and brought some much needed energy to the offense. He finished the game with 4 receptions for 72 yards.
Game Goat – Antonio Cromartie had a rough night at the office, getting beat for two touchdowns, including one where Miles Austin pulled the ball away from him.
Play of the Game – I am taking the blocked punt. I have never heard the stadium louder.
- LaDainian Tomlinson – 6 receptions, 73 yards
- Jeff Cumberland – First career NFL reception went for 33 yards
- Bart Scott – 8 tackles, 2 for a loss and a sack
- Mike DeVito – Key strip sack in the 4th quarter
- Shonn Greene – 10 carries, 26 yards
- Wayne Hunter – Beat like a drum by DeMarcus Ware all night
- Jeremy Kerley – 1 offensive play logged
- Derrick Mason – Didn’t seem on the same page as Sanchez and dropped a touchdown pass
1. Greene needs to show more as the starting running back or we will start to see more and more LaDainian Tomlinson, who already played an equal amount of snaps to him last week. Joe McKnight will likely also get a shot at some point on offense and Bilal Powell always remains an option off the bench if Greene continues to struggle.
2. Jamaal Westerman didn’t record a stat last week, hopefully he can get going as a pass rush threat in the coming weeks. It was good to see Calvin Pace finally on the field in week one and coming up with a sack.
3. Very encouraging performances by TJ Conley and Nick Folk in week one, should calm some of the nerves about the Jets special teams.
TJ Rosenthal reviews his five keys from the game
1. SANCHEZ, YEAR THREE BEGINS: We said “This is Mark Sanchez’s team now. He will be judged according to where the Jets end up.”
27-24. Late comeback. Again. It didn’t start out so rosy but winners grind and losers find ways to lose. Sanchez is a winner, who also put up 335 yards. Enough said
2. KEEP ROMO CONTAINED: We said “The Jets pass rush up front has provided little pressure this preseason. What they CAN’T do is compound that by allowing Romo to escape the pocket where he likes to sling it Brett Favre style. Often times with downfield success. Even worse for the Jets, Romo has Jason Witten.”
So much for that. The Jets couldn’t stop Romo. He stopped himself. Twice in the fourth quarter. Witten killed the Jets all night.
3. CROMARTIE VS BRYANT AND AUSTIN: We said: “Balls will be flying like Juy 4th fireworks in CB Antonio Cromartie’s work area.With the game breaking combo of Dez Bryant and Miles Austin coming to town, “Cro” can ill afford a night like the one he had LAST year in week one against the Ravens.”
Whew. Cro almost had a repeat of that dismal night. Two TD’s on his watch and the ‘Boys were aiming for a third. Just got out of dodge with that matchup.
4. KELLER AND WITTEN: We said: “ Jason Witten is the template for how an All Pro tight end should perform and be employed in the passing game.Keller has been “emerging” since his rookie year. It’s time For number 81 to be that weapon that the Jets don’t make excuses about anymore.
Keller was a force with five catches and a TD that brought the Jets back to 10-7. Witten was not only a force, he was a threat. Still, the play of Keller helped stave off Dallas.
5. SCHOTTY VS ROB RYAN: We said: “A stalemate in this one on one battle of the headsets will keep the Jets in the game. Anything less may leave the Jets at 0-1 and prepping for Jacksonville.”
Ryan owned the Jets for three quarters. Schotty adjusted to the screen game and a tiring secondary late. Call it a stalemate if you want because one big quarter can nullify three solid quarters and it did Sunday night.