New York Jets Fans Want More Joe McKnight

TJ on the desire of New York Jets fans to see more Joe McKnight on offense

The combination of a struggling offense and some big time plays on special teams from Joe McKnight have helped peak the curiosity around Jets Nation as to what the former USC product could bring to the table, in any sort of extended role.

So far in 2011, McKnight’s accomplishments include blocking a key punt that led to a comeback win, running back the longest kickoff return on Jets history. He’s also caught a few passes downfield after lining up in the slot, and has had a few tries out of the backfield taking pitches outside hoping to break one down the sidelines. So now what?

We polled Jets Nation on Twitter by asking them “What size role do you want to see the Jets give Joe McKnight at this point in the season?”

31 Percent – 5-10 TOUCHES at RB/WR

24 Percent- 10 TOUCHES at RB 24 pct

15 Percent – 10-15 TOUCHES at RB

7.5 Percent – 15 TOUCHES as KR/RB/WR combined

7.5 Percent – Part of an even spread three ways (Greene, LT, McKnight)

7.5 Percent – Split carries 50/50 with Shonn Greene 7.5 pct

7.5 Percent – Continue along in the same role.

92.5 Percent – Role to increase towards a minimum of 5-10 touches per game.

The reasoning behind the increase in activity for McKnight included the following:

  • Simply faster than both Shonn Greene, and Ladainian Tomlinson.
  • At this point the Jets have nothing to lose.
  • McKnight hits the hole faster.
  • He’ll be effective in the same role as a Danny Woodhead: RB/WR
  • The Offense needs a spark and additional breakaway speed.

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Game Breakdown: Jets vs. Chargers

TOJ breaks down the Jets week 7 match-up against the San Diego Chargers

Offense: How about a first quarter touchdown? Maybe even a first quarter first down? The New York Jets must find a way to start faster because of the firepower San Diego has on the offensive side of the football. It is on Mark Sanchez and Brian Schottenheimer in particular to come up with something to put the Chargers defense on their heels.

I would expect to see more LaDainian Tomlinson than usual on Sunday. He has looked better with the football in his hands all season than Shonn Greene and you know how motivated he will be for Sunday. Between Tomlinson, Greene, and hopefully a larger dose of Joe McKnight the Jets must establish a running game to keep the pressure off Mark Sanchez and open the play action passing attack down the field.

The Jets are going to need all of their pass catching options to step up on Sunday. Santonio Holmes must be the number one receiver they signed him to be and make another big play as he did the past two weeks. Plaxico Burress needs a couple of first quarter catches to get in the flow of the game. Dustin Keller should be able to stretch the seam with Jeremy Kerley. The offense only scored 17 points last week, which isn’t going to cut it this Sunday.

Defense: Ryan Matthews would seem to be type of back who will give the Jets defense a world of trouble. Of course, Ray Rice seemed that way too but they were able to keep him in check. Rex Ryan’s unit needs their “A” game like they had in Baltimore led by the defensive line up front slowing Matthews and Mike Tolbert down. Philip Rivers has been off so far this year but always has the ability to flip the switch and push the football down the field as well as any quarterback in the league.

I would expect Darrelle Revis to spend the overwhelmingly majority of the game on Vincent Jackson. The real question is going to be how will the Jets handle Malcolm Floyd and Antonio Gates if he suits up? Antonio Cromartie needs to show up and the safeties have to perform better. The Jets should also be able to get after Rivers. Aaron Maybin, Jamaal Westerman, and Calvin Pace must keep Rivers uneasy in the pocket and force another turnover or two.

Special Teams: An area of the game where the Jets could have a large advantage. A huge kick or punt return will go a long way towards helping pull off the “upset.” TJ Conley must also keep up his strong performances, as field position will be crucial in what should be a tight game.

Two Months & Still No Answers: NFL, College Football, NBA

Justin breaks down what we have learned through two months of the college football and NFL season, along with a look at the NBA Lockout

Questions remain. Is Oklahoma the best college team in the country? Don’t bother thinking about it. They’re the most explosive offense, but as Oregon found out against LSU, great defense beats great offense every time in college football. Oklahoma will fear the LSU or Alabama defense if they so happen to meet in the BCS championship game.

They will fear it because it hits hard. See Jordan Rogers. They will fear it because it causes turnovers, whether through the air or on the ground. They will fear it because it keeps coming, and even after the ball gets thrown Landry Jones will still have to pick himself up off the ground and wait for the blue moon blitz.

Alabama put a beating on Ole Miss, as LSU did to Tennessee earlier on Saturday. The debate as to who is better comes down to the running game, because both quarterbacks are probably not even in the top 10 in the country. Now LSU gets the beauty of a quarterback controversy heading into the November 5th early SEC championship game.

To break this down to those who have not witnessed Alabama and how they go about outscoring opponents by 40 every weekend I have devised this 8 part script:

Part 1 – Let the opposing offense march down the field, giving a false sense of hope
Part 2 – Start to stop the run game
Part 3 – Take away the pass game
Part 4 – Introduce Trent Richardson to opposing defensive backs
Part 5 – With 21 point lead, take Richardson out of the game
Part 6 – Hit someone so hard on defense they stop looking for screens and passes over the middle
Part 7 – With 30 point lead, insert Eddie Lacy or Marcus Fowler
Part 8 – Enjoy victory

Oh Denard. Michigan is currently sitting at the great precipice of what may be the end to their season. How did Michigan fall apart against Michigan State? They couldn’t play their game. Their game that consists of power run, option run, screen pass, QB sneak, and repeat. Michigan always runs up scores in the first few weeks against subpar teams, but Michigan State knows their game plan, and as long as Denard Robinson is around that isn’t going to change much. He, unfortunately, cannot throw the ball. What some call back shoulder, some call luck.

So there you go. Alabama will be in the title game, LSU will destroy some Big 12/Pac 12 team in a bowl game as Alabama did to Michigan State last year, and Oklahoma will finally be exposed as the pass happy big brother to Oregon. Stanford will have to beat the elusive, speed first Oregon if they are going to get anywhere close to the BCS championship, all the while praying to god Oklahoma has some sort of huge slip up. Neither may happen, so we may again be wondering if the smartest team in the country can actually hang with either the Big 10 or SEC. After this season it won’t matter, so if they are going to do it, they better do it this year.

If Clemson survives the rest of their schedule, they will make a nice story, but the great matchup of an undefeated Georgia Tech against an undefeated Clemson is sadly not to be.

Don’t trust Oklahoma State. They are horrible on defense, and they will ultimately rely on the play of their quarterback and running back to put up 50 if they have any chance to make it through the Big 12 with only one loss (Oklahoma). Giving up an average of 27 a game is not a method for long term success.

The Big East, whom I love like Gilbert Grape, will not exist in five years, so no point in getting sentimental about teams like West Virginia and Rutgers and Syracuse.

The Big 10 championship will be ugly. There will not be many points scored, and if it ends up as Michigan State against Wisconsin, look for something truly hideous.

TCU can’t pass and they can’t stop the pass, so the temporary love affair from analysts is most likely over. Someone print up posters of Kellen Moore and Justin Bieber side by side. I love Boise State, and will until I am cold and rotting. They average 14.5 points against, so I can love the defense and let Kellen sling it all over the field.

As I stated previously, the South Carolinas and Floridas are sadly not going to be a part of the SEC championship. I have a respect for Florida’s defense, and I have unabashedly announced my fascination with both Marcus Lattimore and Jadaveon Clowney. Despite this, they are a rung below the machinelike efficiency of both LSU and Alabama.

Anyone care about the Sun Belt? No? Good.

On to the NFL. Who’s the best team in the AFC North? The Ravens. They are what the Jets wish theywere. Greatest linebackers and safeties of their generation, an All Pro defensive tackle, and a running back who is the lighter/faster version of Shonn Greene. The Patriots are probably going to meet them in the AFC championship, but as we all know, defense wins in the playoffs. Can’t Wait.

NFC North? Packers. There are few things that can beat the Packers, save for some ridiculous pressure and or speed that no defense has at the moment. Aaron Rodgers will run circles around the rest of the NFC north for the rest of the season. God help any NFC team that happens to run across the Packers indoors the rest of the season.

What will happen to the weirdest team in football? Carson Palmer will probably throw for 150, two interceptions, and two touchdowns this weekend. They will not sling it out, accuracy is key when you’ve got Bush and Mcfadden in the backfield. 3rd and 4. That is until Moore and Heyward-Bey get loose and Carson Palmer says to himself, “hey now, these guys can run better than the guys in Cincinnati!”

The only question is, would Carson have fared better with AJ Green and Jermaine Gresham than he will with Kevin Boss and the two burners on the outside?

At this point, I must make my confession about the NFC East. The Redskins are a QB and a receiver from the playoffs. They should do well in this year’s draft, probably ending up with the 16th pick and finally getting the offensive help to add to one of the NFC’s best defenses. If they can get a big fast receiver and a first round quarterback, they may actually stand a chance against the overhyped Eagles and the under-hyped Giants.

As a Jets fan, it makes me sad to realize that the Giants are a better built organization. Just look at the first round picks:

Hakeem Nicks, Jason Pierre Paul, Mathias Kiwanuka, Antrel Rolle, Aaron Ross

The offensive line: Four Pro Bowls. Defensive line: Four Pro Bowls. They have consistency that most teams envy. They will make the playoffs this year and the rest of the ALL STAR teams (Cowboys, Eagles) will have to deal with quarterback inconsistency that makes Eli Manning look like Peyton.
Enough love for the NFC East. I feel sick.

There is a sad end to all of this, the NBA

The NBA will not have a full season this year. It will probably not have even half a season. If there is a season, it will be weird, short and as exciting as the last 6 weeks of college football.

We already missed the Heat vs. Knicks, Thunder vs. Mavericks and to keep the list going would make every NBA fan seethe with rage. As the NFL taught us, it isn’t over till its over but this time it feels like it’s been over since the beginning. And now the players are talking about a ten game world tour, something you wouldn’t do unless you have little to no hope. Here comes the NBA equivalent of the XFL, and it will not last. Even the most diehard fans will feel cheated.

Two New York Jets With Unique Arrivals Bring Speed & Power To Defense

TJ on the impact of Aaron Maybin and Kenrick Ellis on the New York Jets defense

Aaron Maybin’s strips and sack of Dolphins QB Matt Moore Monday night provided a speed in pursuit the Jets sorely needed from the LB position. Big Kenrick Ellis blasted through the Dolphins line to stuff a key Miami rushing attempt by the goal line. These two first year Jets, both arriving with different suitcases full of baggage, could be the keys to injecting this slow starting defense with the production it needs to return to being one of the NFL’s best.

Maybin, a former Penn State Nittany Lion, started only one game in two seasons for the Buffalo Bills after having been selected 11th overall in the 2009 draft. Maybin told Bob Wischusen on 1050 ESPN Tuesday night that with all due respect to the Bills organization, “it was hard to make plays” while not being on the field. Maybin is making plays as a Jet. His tag as a top round “bust” may soon turn to “steal” should his quality play continue.

After making the 53 player roster out of camp, Maybin was surprisingly released only days later. His return came in Baltimore after being re signed prior to the matchup with the Ravens. Jets fans got a glimpse of what could be when he hunted down QB Joe Flacco, causing a fumble in Ravens territory. At a time in the game when the Jets were in position to continue their comeback.

The opportunity was wasted one play later when Mark Sanchez threw an interception to Lardarius Webb that resulted in a 73 yard return for TD. It was a play that essentially sealed the game, but the play by Maybin was one that turned many Jets fans heads. Finally, some devastating speed had arrived.

Maybin’s play picked up again Monday night as he forced two fumbles and sacked Matt Moore once. This “Mayhem” style that seems predicated on spying behind the Jets defensive line, may bring the Jets more short fields to work with going forward. A concept that will be music to the ears of the Jets who are still searching for an identity on offense, and can use all the help they can get.

Ellis, whose draft stock dropped due to his facing a felony charge in a case that has been moved to Feb 7th, 2012, was a risk that for now could pay off in 2011. The third round pick out of Hampton was finally activated for the first time Monday night to the delight of Jets nation.

Should his size and presence help plug a run defense that has been burned by many running backs so far this season, perhaps the Jets will once again, be able to force opposing teams into third and more long situations. A scenario that would be welcome by head coach Rex Ryan and his blitz packages.

The Jets are giving up close to 22 points a game this year, up from 19 a game last season. Maybin and Ellis could help return this team to a place where less is asked of Mark Sanchez and company. If so, the Jets could once again base their foundation off of the defense. This way the offense and special teams could also go back to lending a key hand without being elevated into the primary provider role . A formula that allowed the Jets to win enough games to earn a trip to the postseason in both years under Ryan.

New York Jets: 10 Up, 10 Down

Ten New York Jets trending up, and ten New York Jets trending down

Up – Wayne Hunter

After an ugly start that had most of us clamoring for Damien Woody, Hunter has settled down and put together back to back solid performances, including a terrific one on Monday Night against Cameron Wake. Nobody ever expected Hunter to be a Pro-Bowl caliber player but if he can find some consistency and be an average starter, the Jets will at least have a year or two to find a long term replacement.

Down – Shonn Greene

I have always believed that if given the opportunity Shonn Greene could be a quality feature back. Through six games, Greene is making me reconsider that thought process. He needs to start breaking a few big runs, so his 21 carries for 71 yards could start looking like 21 carries for 115 yards. If he continues to be this sluggish, look for more carries for LaDainian Tomlinson and Joe McKnight down the stretch and then look for Mike Tannenbaum to make a strong play for Matt Forte or Maurice Jones-Drew this off-season.

Up – Joe McKnight

The new Brad Smith, who finds a way to make a few big plays each week either on offense or special teams. He should receive a bigger role as both a running back and receiver moving forward. When is the last time you heard anyone mention Leon Washington or Danny Woodhead by the way?

Down – Plaxico Burress

By everybody’s admission, he isn’t on the same page as Mark Sanchez yet which is somewhat understandable. However, the sulking on the field isn’t helping anyone. The question of if Burress is going to become a consistent weapon down the stretch, will go a long way to determining how serious of a playoff contender the Jets are.

Up – Aaron Maybin

His skill set is very raw, as basically all he could is speed rush. However, he is always going 100 miles per hour and has a natural ability to create turnovers as he seems to force a fumble every time he makes a tackle. He is a good project to continue developing in this defense and should create more plays as the season progresses.

Down – Matthew Mulligan/Patrick Turner

A symbol of Brian Schottenheimer’s problems as  aplay caller, as they are dead give aways to the Jets running the football. The problem is that neither seem to provide much of a threat as a pass catcher and the only impact plays I can remember from them is dropped passes by both them and the occasional holding call on Mulligan.

Up – Jamaal Westerman

He has finally broke through with 2.5 sacks in the past 2 games, providing the pass rush the coaching staff expected this off-season. However, Westerman still must become a complete player and set the edge better in the running game, as do all the Jets linebackers and ends.

Down – Mark Sanchez

Sanchez hasn’t been quite as bad as some will lead you to believe. Yet, his continued struggles with accuracy and slow starts remains frustrating to watch. The good news is that he has avoided turnovers the past two weeks but this offense needs more from him, especially in this critical upcoming three game stretch of games.

Up – Kenrick Ellis

The rookie third round pick was finally active last week and made a noticeable impact along the defensive line. Considering the Jets struggles stopping the run, expect to see much more Ellis moving forward. There is no questioning his talent but can he continue to improve in Rex Ryan’s system?

Down – Antonio Cromartie

He has been way, way too inconsistent this season. Cromartie should be as charged up as possible (no pun intended) for this Sunday, so hopefully he can begin to display some type of steadiness in the number two corner spot.

Up – Kyle Wilson

Wilson has quietly put together a much improved second year, highlighted by the job he did against Davone Bess in the slot last week. His role on the defense should only continue to grow and you feel like it is only a matter of time until he starts turning in some interceptions and sacks.

Down – Eric Smith

I am still not convinced he is anywhere near capable of being a full time starter at safety. His shortcomings in coverage are too much to overcome, particularly next to Jim Leonhard who already struggles in coverage.

Up – Nick Folk/TJ Conley

Nick Folk hasn’t missed a kick yet this year. Conley has been steady, which is saying something for the Jets punter position in previous years.

Down – Donald Strickland

It has been frustrating to see him injured again and not make much an impact when given the reps early in the year. With Wilson continuing to improve, I don’t see him having much of a role down the stretch.

Up – LaDainian Tomlinson

You have to expect a big game from Tomlinson this week against San Diego, right? LT has continued to be more productive with the football in his hands than any other running back on the team. If Greene continues to struggle, look for the Jets to lean more on Tomlinson down the stretch.

Down – Brodney Pool

I thought he could provide some support in pass coverage considering the shortcomings of Smith and Leonhard at the position. However, he hasn’t been much better and also been missing tackles all over the field in the running game.

Up – David Harris

So far Harris has been more active around the football than he was in 2010. Through six games, he has 33 tackles, an interception, 3 passes defensed, and 2 sacks.

Down – The Trips Wide Formation

There always seems to be a point in each game, where the Jets bunch three of receivers and split them out exceptionally wide. They proceed to always run the football out of the formation and opposing defenses know it. Once…I have seen the Jets run a bubble screen out of this for a 1 yard gain. It is time to can it.

Up – John Conner

The Terminator had been fairly quiet this year but has seen his usage increase in recent weeks. He had a crushing block on kick return to start the game last week and looked more efficient in the running game. Now, if he could only catch…

Down – The General Consensus On This Team

I think the win over Miami and the way it occurred may have put even more people down on this team than their three losses. They are now underdogs in their own building. Will it provide motivation?

New York Jets: Wins Are Good, Right?

Rob Celletti wonders what it will take to keep New York Jets fans happy

It is a funny game they play in the National Football League.  Sometimes, the post-game discussion and analysis is even funnier.

This past Sunday, the New York Giants won an important home game against the upstart Buffalo Bills.  A 24-24 nailbiter turned on a late red zone interception by the Giants’ Corey Webster, setting up a game-winning field goal for Big Blue.

On Monday morning, the New York media heaped praise upon Tom Coughlin’s team, and rightfully so.  The Giants were feeling “Super” (wink, wink) at 4-2 heading into their bye week, and Eli Manning was praised as an elite quarterback, despite not throwing a touchdown pass in the Giants’ victory (and nearly being intercepted to kill the eventual game-winning drive).

On Monday night, at the very same stadium, the New York Jets won a game by 18 points, against a division opponent that always challenges and plays them close.  Similarly, this game also turned on a red zone interception, complete with a highlight film 100-yard run-back, the only moment which garnered a significant reaction from the lifeless MetLife Stadium crowd.  Darelle Revis’ goal-line interception righted the ship for the Jets, who settled in for an eventually comfortable, if imperfect 24-6 victory.

But if you picked up a newspaper, logged onto a blog, or listened to a sports-talk radio show on Tuesday, you’d have thought the Jets lost.  The main talking points hadn’t changed much from what they were when the Jets were mired in a 3-game losing streak: the quarterback was inconsistent, the running game was not explosive, the defense gave up too many yards.

Isn’t winning supposed to be fun?

I am aware that the Buffalo Bills are a much better football team than the Miami Dolphins, who are probably now considering full tank-mode so they can draft Andrew Luck.  But my point in comparing the two scenarios is to bring to light just how asinine and absurd some of the post-game analysis of the NFL truly is.

A lot of people made the point on Tuesday that if Revis’ pick-six doesn’t happen, there’s a strong chance the Jets don’t recover from a 10-0 deficit and lose the game.  First of all, there’s no way to prove that.  Secondly, how does the Giants game turn out if Webster doesn’t make his interception?  For that matter, how does any NFL game turn out if key plays don’t happen, or go the other way?  That’s what makes them key plays, right?

And really, that’s what it is all about in the NFL.  The salary cap makes it arguably the most competitive pro sports league in the world.  The “any given Sunday” cliche is one that actually holds true, especially in division games, where you always throw records out the window.  A lot of NFL games are decided by one or two plays.  The Giants were praised for theirs, the Jets were scolded.

Again, I’m under no illusions here.  I know the Dolphins are a lost cause, and that the Jets need to play much, much better football, especially at the start of games.  I’m not apologizing for what I think is a defense that has some holes personnel-wise and an offense that is being held back by their offensive coordinator.  But, the Jets won a game and are right back into their season now.  And oh yeah, they won by 18 points, thoroughly dominating their opponent in the second half.  People seem to have overlooked that.

Perhaps it’s a product of Rex Ryan’s change in the culture of the team, but it seems as though Jets fans are not satisfied with anything other than a 63-0 victory in any contest.  It has gotten a little absurd, quite frankly.  And if you think back to last year, the Jets weren’t exactly juggernauts, either, despite all of the good will an 11-5 season and a 2nd straight AFC Championship Game appearance created.  They needed 4th quarter comebacks and/or overtime to beat some below-average competition.  Their defense looked just as vulnerable last year (at times) as it does this year, especially on third downs and late in games.

People predicting a special season this year from the Jets were probably a bit misguided, which has led to an enormous amount of criticism – some justified, some not – of this .500 team so far.  But in the NFL, it often boils down to one or two plays in a close game.  The Jets aren’t currently great, but they’re probably not far off either.

New York Jets: From One Must Win To The Next

This week’s home showdown against the San Diego Chargers is a pivotal game for the New York Jets season

The New York Jets pulled out their must win last night against the Miami Dolphins, thanks mostly to playing the Miami Dolphins. This week the competition level steps up substantially as they prepare to face the San Diego Chargers at home, where the early line has them as an underdog. The Chargers haven’t been overly impressive in their 4-1 start, considering they won tight games over Minnesota, Kansas City, Miami, and Denver…all contenders in the “Suck For Luck” sweepstakes but wins are wins and the Chargers are a dangerous opponent, as we will get into throughout the week.

Currently at 3-3 with their bye week on the horizon, this stands as a pivotal game for the New York Jets season. Let’s look at the two paths —

Win

  • 4-3. Heading into the bye on a 2 game winning streak, making their 3 game losing streak a distant memory when they take the field on November 6th in Buffalo.
  • 2 weeks to prepare for the Bills, who will likely be 5-2 (they have a bye and play home versus Washington) and a single game ahead of the Jets in the AFC East and wild-card race.
  • An outside shot to catch New England remains, as the 5-1 Pats have a bye and then travel to Pittsburgh and host the Giants before coming to the New Meadowlands for a Sunday Night game versus the Jets. If the Jets beat San Diego and Buffalo, while New England loses one of those two. The Jets will be playing for a chance to pull even in first place in the AFC East.
  • An important tie-breaker with San Diego if they end up being a wild-card contender because Oakland takes the AFC West.
  • An important tie-breaker by improving their AFC record, as the Jets will likely be battling it out with 4 or 5 teams for a wild-card.

Lose

  • 3-4. Two weeks to sit on a home loss and for everybody to clearly state how the Jets are out of it and their season is over. Buffalo and New England licking their chops to truly bury their season.
  • Any small chance at an AFC East title is completely gone.
  • The Jets don’t have a tie-breaker with either Oakland or San Diego and have a 2-4 record in the AFC, hurting any tie-breaker chance they have.
  • Any facade of the Jets being a better home team this year disappears.

Which way will the Jets go?

New York Jets: Plaxico Burress Becoming Invisible

Plaxico Burress is becoming invisible on the New York Jets offense

Plaxico Burress started his New York Jets career with a bang, putting together a monster second half in their opening night victory over the Dallas Cowboys. Since then, outside of a few plays in near garbage time against the Oakland Raiders, he has been an invisible man on the Jets offense. After dropping a pair of passes last week in New England, Burress had a concerning performance last night.

After not seeing a pass thrown his way in the first half, he finally caught a 16 yard slant route in the second half, which he followed by shaking his head repeatedly in a “why aren’t we doing this more often” kind of way. He followed up by dropping a dig route and then jogging on a deep ball that was thrown his way. Yes, Burress did throw a nice block on the Santonio Holmes touchdown and yes he has been surprisingly strong with that aspect of his game but what kind of factor will he be in the Jets passing attack moving forward?

Burress is clearly the type of receiver who appears to get frustrated if he is not involved early in game. Mark Sanchez and him have not fully developed their chemistry yet, while Brian Schottenheimer hasn’t found a way to get Burress in the rhythm of the offense. Where is the back shoulder fade that he traditionally runs so well? Where is the creativity in the red-zone?

The blame falls on all three of them, Burress, Sanchez, and Schottenheimer. In retrospect, it is looking like it might have been smarter just to keep Braylon Edwards as he had developed a good rapport with Sanchez and was coming off a strong season. However, the Jets are stuck with Burress now and he needs to run sharper routes, stop the sulking, work his way back to the football when it is thrown to him, and not jog any route. Sanchez and Schottenheimer need to find a way to get Burress going early, along with Sanchez improving his timing with him.

This offense needs a possession receiver and red-zone target opposite of Santonio Holmes. Burress is still working off the rust but the clock is ticking with a must win upcoming against the San Diego Chargers.

Grading Out Jets/Dolphins

TOJ grades out the Jets 24-6 win over the Miami Dolphins

Quarterback (B-) 14/25, 201 yards, a rushing touchdown, and a passing touchdown. It wasn’t a great performance from Mark Sanchez but he improved as the game went on. The slow start falls on him and Brian Schottenheimer as he needs to come out in better rhythm. The lapses of accuracy remain concerning but Sanchez still has a way of making big plays when everything breaks down around him.

Running Backs (C) – Shonn Greene remains thoroughly average. LaDainian Tomlinson had a little giddy-up in his step, as you know he is licking his chops thinking about this week’s game against San Diego. I do think the Jets need to consider shifting more carries to Tomlinson and Joe McKnight, who made a few nice receptions split out at wide receiver.

Wide Receivers (C) – Santonio Holmes was electric when he was able to get the football in his hands. Plaxico Burress looked sluggish and disinterested, which should be a cause for concern moving forward. Jeremy Kerley had a nice third down conversion but also had a dropped pass.

Tight Ends (B) – A pair of big plays from Dustin Keller, who still needs to be more involved in the passing game. Matthew Mulligan had good contributions in the running game.

Offensive Line (B+) – Very good pass protection but the push in the running game is still lacking. It is nice to see improvement from Wayne Hunter, who had his best game of the season.

Defensive Line (B-) – The run defense could have been better but it looks like Kenrick Ellis has the potential to be a very good player alongside Muhammad Wilkerson moving forward.

Linebackers (B+) – 2 sacks from Calvin Pace, 2 forced fumbles from Aaron Maybin and a huge hit on Matt Moore from David Harris that forced an interception…an overdue night of playmaking from the Jets linebackers.

Secondary (A) – The “A” is all for Darrelle Revis, who put on a show last night. He came up with a 100 yard interception return for a touchdown when it looked the Jets season may be on the brink. Kyle Wilson also had a hell of a night in the slot covering Davone Bess.

Special Teams (D) – I am dropping them all the way down because of the muffed kick return…that is two this year, c’mon man. Nick Folk and TJ Conley are both quietly having very good years.

Coaching (C) – A win is a win but let’s beat San Diego before saying things are turned around. Also what was that play call with LaDainian Tomlinson attempting a pass to Mark Sanchez? Really?

Initial Reaction: New York Jets Look Average In 24-6 Win

The New York Jets moved to .500 with an ugly 24-6 win over the Miami Dolphins, yet a win is a win.

It was good to see the New York Jets end their three game losing streak tonight with a 24-6 win. It was equally good to see how awful the Miami Dolphins truly are, as they may go 1-15 this year. However, let’s not kid ourselves. The Jets did not look like a good football team tonight. They certainly didn’t look a playoff contender.

Let’s call a spade a spade. Miami is a putrid football team who was led by a journeyman quarterback. Matt Moore missed wide open receivers all over the field and threw a bad interception to Darrelle Revis who returned it 100 yards to the house. Brandon Marshall dropped what should have been a touchdown pass on the following drive and Miami never managed to do much else on offense. However, the Jets pass rush was inconsistent and their run defense left something to be desired.

The Jets started off with four straight three and outs on offense, which is pretty hard to conceive considering how bad Miami’s defense has been. Eventually they got it going, with a touchdown drive that ended with two surprisingly savvy play calls from Brian Schottenheimer, including a touchdown run on a quarterback draw from Mark Sanchez who was okay tonight, finishing 14/25 for 201 yards and a TD.

In the second half the Jets took control and broke the game open on a pretty 38 yard touchdown reception by Santonio Holmes. It was the type of play that makes you get frustrated that Holmes doesn’t get more touches. The defense poured it on late with a few sacks and another Revis interceptions. In the end, you have a 24-6 victory with a few positives but also plenty of areas the Jets still need to improve in. Tonight’s effort won’t cut it against San Diego, Buffalo, or New England in the next three games.

Statistical Notes/Highlights

  • Calvin Pace 7 tackles, 2 sacks
  • Kyle Wilson shut down Davone Bess in the slot
  • Joe McKnight had 2 receptions for 29 yards
  • Shonn Greene: 21 carries, 74 yards…meh
  • Aaron Maybin had a sack and 2 more forced fumbles
  • Kenrick Ellis had 3 tackles and 1 for a loss