TOJ Week 12 NFL Picks

TOJ with his week 12 NFL picks. Who are your best bets on Sunday?

Season Record – 81-65-5

Week 12 Picks (Lines Courtesy of BetUS)

  • Arizona (+2.5) vs. St. Louis
  • Jets (-9.5) vs. Buffalo
  • Cleveland (+7.5) vs. Cincinnati
  • Houston (-7.5) vs. Jacksonville
  • Carolina (4.5) vs. Indianapolis
  • Tampa Bay (+3.5) vs. Tennessee
  • Atlanta (-10.5) vs. Minnesota
  • Oakland (-4) vs. Chicago
  • Seattle (-3.5) vs. Washington
  • New England (4.5) vs. Philadelphia
  • Denver (+6) vs. San Diego
  • Pittsburgh (-11.5) vs. Kansas City
  • New Orleans (-7) vs. Giants

New York Jets Fans: Week 12 Rooting Guide

Who should Jets fans be rooting for this Sunday?

It is that time of the year again, the time when the New York Jets inevitably need help to make the playoffs and have to rely on other team’s slipping up. Here is your week 12 rooting guide, along with the impact of the game on the Jets stretch run —

Houston (7-3) at Jacksonville (3-7) – Moderate Impact – Houston is more than likely winning the AFC South, however it would be nice to see them struggle down the stretch with Matt Leinart. In a scenario where the Jets make the playoffs, there is nobody I’d rather have them play in the wild-card round than Houston.

Cleveland (4-6) at Cincinnati (6-4) – High Impact – Doesn’t it make you sad that the Jets have a one game better record than Cleveland? Either way, the Jets need the Browns and their putrid offense (one of the few in the league worse than the Jets) to step up for the upset. The Bengals have lost two straight and are banged up with another likely loss (at Pittsburgh) on the horizon. Now is the time to enter their free-fall, so 10 wins can grab the Jets a playoff spot.

Tampa Bay (3-7) at Tennessee (5-5) – High Impact – The Titans currently have the same record and the same chance as the Jets of making the playoffs, let’s hope the “youngry” Bucs can go on the road and give us a hand.

Chicago (6-4) at Oakland (6-4) – Moderate Impact – If Oakland goes on to win the AFC West, their tie-breaker with the Jets won’t matter. Go Raiders.

Denver (5-5) at San Diego (6-4) – High Impact – Enjoy rooting for the Chargers this week, since the Jets have a tie breaker with them but not with Tebow Christ and his apostles. Let me say for the record, similar to John Elway I am not sold on Tebow as a quarterback. You won’t get a gift wrapped Mark Sanchez pick six and embarrassing amount of offensive ineptitude from your opponent every week. Tebow isn’t good. Denver isn’t good. They aren’t making the playoffs.

New England (7-3) at Philadelphia (4-6) – Moderate Impact – The only game the rest of the year the Patriots have a chance at losing. Fly Eagles Fly!

Pittsburgh (7-3) at Kansas City (4-6) – Moderate Impact – A Chiefs upset couldn’t hurt…

Jets vs. Bills: 12 Pack Of Predictions

TOJ with 12 predictions for the Jets/Bills week 12 match-up

The 12 Pack needs a few wins as bad as the New York Jets do…

1. C.J. Spiller is going to put together his best game as a professional, finishing with over 100 yards of total offense and a touchdown. He will turn at least one screen pass into a big play.

2. LaDainian Tomlinson will be inactive. Joe McKnight will see extended work for the second week in a row and have an offensive touchdown.

3. Plaxico Burress will have at least 60 yards receiving and another touchdown.

4. The Jets are going to have a conservative game plan. Shonn Greene will get at least 18 carries and Joe McKnight will have 8-12.

5. Brad Smith will make one big play for the Bills, either on offense or special teams.

6. This will be a close game at halftime and will remain somewhat tight into the early fourth quarter.

7. Mark Sanchez will throw for less than 250 yards.

8. Ryan Fitzpatrick will throw a pair of interceptions and will be sacked once or twice.

9. Joe McKnight will have a huge kick return either for a touchdown or one that directly sets up points.

10. Josh Baker will see extended reps in place of Matthew Mulligan (wishful thinking).

11. Dustin Keller will go yet another game without scoring a touchdown.

12. It isn’t going to be pretty (think the Monday night Miami game earlier in the year) but ultimately the Jets will escape with a 24-13 win.

20 Things For New York Jets Fans To Be Thankful For

20 things for New York Jets fans to be thankful for on Thanksgiving

Before we get into the 20 things for New York Jets fans to be thankful for today. I would like to express gratitude to everybody who takes the time to read TOJ, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, or interact with the site in any other way. We have been growing slowly but steadily here and there are few things I enjoy more than talking Jets with all of you out there. I also want to thank our writing staff, TJ Rosenthal, who is kind enough to contribute his pieces from The Jet Report, Justin Fritze who has been giving us great, unique content for almost 8 months now, and Rob and Chris Celletti for starting up with TOJ in the past couple of months. Will Horton from The Rams Herd for ongoing help with HTML Randy Yaws for designing our banner, and Randy Field for linking up the forum to the site.

We are always trying to get better here at TOJ…keep an eye out for a site redesign this off-season, along with a few new developments. If you have ideas or are ever interested in submitting a post or becoming a writer, e-mail me at JoeC@TurnOnTheJets.com

20 Things For New York Jets Fans To Be Thankful For

1. Rex Ryan – Hate him or love him, Rex has been a blessing for this organization. There is nothing worse than being irrelevant and that is what the Jets were prior to Ryan being named the head coach. He has made them a national team, nevermind bringing them to back to back AFC Championship Games.

2. Mark Sanchez – Yea, I went there. Perhaps you forgot Chad Pennington’s injuries, Kellen Clemens, Jay Fielder, Brooks Bollinger, Quincy Carter, Brett Favre’s meltdown, Rick Mirer, and Frank Reich…I didn’t.

3. Mike Tannenbaum – A bold GM, who made some miscalculations this off-season. Yet, has still hired Ryan, drafted Sanchez, Darrelle Revis, David Harris, Nick Mangold, D’Brickashaw Ferguson, Dustin Keller, and traded for Santonio Holmes.

4. Darrelle Revis – The best defensive player in football.

5. David Harris – One of the most under-appreciated linebackers in the league, who is having another terrific year.

6. Nick Mangold – The best center in football.

7. Boomer and Carton, Joe and Evan – A quartet of Jets fans to drown out Mike Francesa’s hate on WFAN. Come get some!

8. The Jets Haters – Rex is a bumbling idiot. Sanchez is the most overrated player in the league. Jets are out of control. The defense is overrated. When will they all shut up? Blah. Blah. Blah. You have made all the wins the past few years that much more sweet.

9. Curtis Martin – The classiest of class acts, who was nominated for the Hall of Fame again this year. Let’s hope he makes it on his second try.

10. Twitter – Off the top of my head, a few recommended must follows for Jets fans – @TheJetReport, @RobCelletti, @ChrisCelletti, @GreenLanternJet, @LilMissNYJet, @KristinReese, @TheJetsStream, @JennyVrentas.

11. Santonio Holmes – A clutch playmaker who needs more touches down the stretch.

12. Mike Westhoff – Take the time to appreciate how great the Jets special teams consistently are.

13. MetLife Stadium – Hey, it is better than playing in Giants Stadium.

14. Christmas Eve vs. the Giants – How much fun is that going to be?

15. The Bills and Dolphins – Without them and their general mediocrity, we would be 3-7.

16. Another Day Further Away From Giants/Patriots Super Bowl – The further that is in the past, the better.

17. Another Game This Sunday – The season isn’t over yet, contrary to popular belief.

18. Jersey Sports Fan – Hysterical

19. Woody Johnson – Not shy about spending money to make his team better.

20. Every other Jets fan out there – So we don’t have to suffer losses alone.

Mental State Of Mark Sanchez Key To New York Jets Making A Run

TJ on the mental state of Mark Sanchez being a key factor on if the Jets can make a late season run

Over the last seven days, Mark Sanchez has been beaten by a quarterback who rarely throws a forward pass, and replaced in practice by another who hasn’t seen the field in a meaningful game in years. The mental state of Mark Sanchez, has expressed both confident and fearful tendencies over two and a half NFL seasons, and is the key component for the Jets playoff hopes. As the club embarks on a six game stretch that includes winnable games on paper, with virtually no room for error.

The 5-5 Jets have done it to themselves. Shoddy offensive line play, a pedestrian rushing attack, and a defense that has failed to dominate the line of scrimmage, have along with the now mistake prone Sanchez, all contributed to the club’s current need of running the table.

Going 5-1 should get the Jets in. 4-2 probably won’t. Not with five losses already in the AFC, and an AFC East title that appears headed for another Foxboro crowning.

The task is doable. A banged up Bills team. A QB-less Chiefs club. A Jekyll and Hyde Philly team and 3-7 yet improving group of Dolphins bring a semblance of hope to the Jets. Provided that their play improves. Starting with Sanchez.

It hasn’t all been the fault of the quarterback though much of the blame for the losing has fallen on the shoulders of number six. What has come first, the Jets quarterback’s lack  of ball security or the mounting losses, is debatable. What is NOT up for debate is that Sanchez has made a plethora of key errors that have led directly to failed outcomes. A collection of instances that have left many questioning his ability to lead the Jets.

Sanchez entered this season prematurely awarded the keys to an “Air Coryell” type of offense that was to throw early and often. Deep and short, and all over the field. Once the hardened wall of  a promising 2-0 start began to show cracks up front, a decision was made to do an about face. The “ground and pound” then made their way back into the huddle after Sanchez took a physical beating in Baltimore. In a loss that dropped the Jets to 2-2 during a hellacious three game road swing. The club’s move back in time settled down the ball security issues that following Sunday, but still resulted in a low octane, 30-21 loss at New England.

After a mundane offensive performance during a 24-6 Monday night win over winless Miami, OC Brian Schottenheimer came out from his lab in order to implement “science project three,” a spread out attack against San Diego. The new look got all Jet skill players involved early. However, an end zone interception thrown by Sanchez in the first half thwarted a drive that reminded some of the game ending pick six by Ravens CB Lardarius Webb in Baltimore one week prior. Despite a solid second half comeback that resulted in a big 27-21 win over the Chargers, a scary habit was forming for the Jets underneath the surface, and inside the helmet of it’s signal caller. At 3-3 though, the Jets were at least back in the race.

The Jets returned from a bye week answering doubts surrounding their recent history of egg laying after breaks, by embarking on a crisp nine minute opening drive at 4-2 Buffalo. One that resulted in, you guessed it, an end zone interception by Sanchez that gave Buffalo life. The play seemed to shake the foundation of Sanchez for the rest of the first half, as another pick was followed by a fumbled snap. Two quarters dominated by the Jets defense soon ended with Gang Green owners of a slim 3-0 lead. Sanchez and Co. got it together later in closing out the Bills 27-11, but questions regarding the QB’s “growth” after his nervous play early on, grew louder afterwards.

Now at 5-3, but trailing 30-16 with 8:00 left in a matchup for first place with New England, Sanchez did it again. Throwing a pick six from his own goal line that put the Pats up for good at 37-16. A play that ended the Pats two game slide and talk of a Belichick dynasty in it’s final throes. The interception only compounded an inexplicable timeout that Sanchez had called prior to a late first half TD, that left Tom Brady enough time to regain the lead 13-9, with a TD of his own.

Anecdotally, the lost lead at halftime had sent the Jets marching toward the locker room, where an angry Ryan told NBC the timeout was the “stupidest play in the history of football.” Moments later, a fan compared Ryan’s work to King Bill’s to which the Jets boisterous coach responded “STFU.” A comment that later led to a $75,000 fine by the league on Ryan.

The loss to it’s archrival after the rare shot at a divisional takeover slipped from within their grasp, left the Jets ripe for an ambush in Denver. Where only days later, on an odd Thursday night tilt, Sanchez again threw away the lead. This time at the tail end of the third quarter of a game the Jets led 10-3. Where points were at a premium, as injured primary backs Shonn Greene and LaDainian Tomlinson sat as specators. The resulting 10-10 tie then set the stage for Tim Tebow’s impersonation of a John Elway game winning drive.

Despite the many gaffes that Sanchez has had in 2011, his body of work during prior years, should still leave him with many postives to rebuild his confidence from. Regardless of the truth that Ryan’s Jets have been built on defense and a stout rushing attack, Sanchez’s caretaking DID lead to four big comeback wins in 2010. As well as clutch play during mistake free play from behind center over two postseasons.

Mark Brunell was given first team reps over the past few days, but the 19 year veteran is not about to start on Sunday in a must win rematch with the Bills. However, don’t take Ryan seriously when he says as he did at a press conference today, that he can’t envision sitting Sanchez. Should the “Sanchise” struggle with the season on the line, in a winnable game that will feature a Fred Jackson-less Bills offense, don’t be shocked if Ryan goes to the bullpen for a short term fix.

The only person who can prevent this scenario is also the only one who can spearhead the Jets return to a swagger that carried them to the Super Bowl’s doorstep for two years straight. Mark Sanchez.

Sanchez must believe in himself again. By surveying the field. By delivering throws on time. By avoiding the tunnel vision that has led to so many points for the opposing the defense. The Jets QB has to remember that he was brought here to get the Jets over the hump. He must take the field Sunday knowing that if the coaching staff DIDN’T feel as though he could achieve that, he would have never been given the starting job from day one, with a quality team built around him, in the first place.

TOJ Thanksgiving Day Picks

TOJ with his Thanksgiving Day picks.

Last Week: 5-7-1

Season Record: 80-63-5

Green Bay (-7) vs. Detroit – I do think the Packers are good enough to run the table. The building will be rocking in Detroit and I expect the Lions to both jump out to an early lead and to empty the playbook with trick plays. However, in the end I think Aaron Rodgers will carve up that defense in the second half and Matthew Stafford will throw a couple of crucial interceptions.

Dallas (-7) vs. Miami – Yes, the Dolphins have been much better as of late but Dallas has too much on the line to slip up here. They are well on their way to being in the driver’s seat of the NFC East and won’t stumble against the surging ‘Fins.

San Francisco (+3) vs. Baltimore – Awesome football game. However, I am more sold on San Francisco than I am on Baltimore at this point. The 49ers play how the Ravens want to play better than they do.

Jets Face November Must Win

TOJ hopes the Jets will play with the necessary desperation this Sunday

Rex Ryan was 100 percent correct when he said the playoffs start now for the New York Jets. Fortunately for them their first round opponent is going to be the Buffalo Bills, a team who has been outscored 106-26 in their last three games. A team whose best player, running back Fred Jackson, won’t be playing this week. A team who has been besieged with injuries across the board and recently put two starters on IR, wide receiver Donald Jones and cornerback Terrence McGee. A team who is 1-4 on the road this season and is basically in a complete free fall.

Let’s not beat around the bush, it is an absolute joke if the New York Jets cannot win this football game. Sadly enough when my friend asked me this week if he should take the Jets in his survivor pool, I had to hesitate and not give an emphatic yes. How could I, after watching how this offense has played the past two weeks? The negative Jets fan inside of me is having visions of C.J. Spiller having his coming out party against the Jets defense and Mark Sanchez throwing three interceptions, with two returned for touchdowns.

In reality, we know the Jets are a better football team than the Buffalo by a substantial margin. We saw it a few weeks ago and the circumstances play more into the Jets favor this week than they did in the previous meeting. They are a better football team than the Denver Broncos and still found a way to lose but the desperation level on this team should be much higher this week, nevermind they have had 10 days to rest and prepare.

The Jets season is over if they lose this Sunday, some coaches and players season’s should also be over if they lose. Let’s hope they play with the necessary urgency and win in the fashion that they should.

A New York Jets Positive: Plaxico Burress

TOJ on a recent positive for the New York Jets: wide receiver Plaxico Burress

After the New York Jets knocked off the Miami Dolphins a few weeks ago, it looked like the Plaxico Burress signing wasn’t working out. He was struggling to consistently stay involved in the offense and looked disinterested at times. Fortunately, over the past few weeks Burress has done a 180 and is both producing on the field and acting like a veteran leader off it.

Against the San Diego Chargers, Burress showed his ability to still dominate in the red-zone with three touchdown receptions. The following week he put together his most complete performance of the season against the Buffalo Bills with 5 receptions for 79 yards. Burress scored his fourth touchdown in three weeks the next game against the Patriots and then this past Thursday he added another 4 receptions for 64 yards against the Broncos.

He looks better getting off the line of scrimmage and has routinely drawn defensive pass interference penalties. Considering his pace to score around 10 touchdowns, it is looking like the signing may actually pay off.

Off the field, Burress hasn’t sniped about Mark Sanchez’s inconsistent play, which he has been baited to do in multiple post-game press conferences. Today he actually stepped up and took responsibility for Sanchez’s pick six against the Denver Broncos saying he should have came back to the ball more. In reality, considering the type of route he was running, a whip route (very similar to an out), that wasn’t necessarily the case. Rod Boone of Newsday tweeted out that Sanchez seemed to appreciate the sentiment from Burress and considering the heat he has been facing from everybody lately receiving some support from his veteran receiver certainly doesn’t hurt. It was a good, veteran move by Plax to take some of the blame even when it wasn’t his fault.

The Jets offense will need Burress to continue to strive down the stretch if they have any plans of making a post-season run.

As Jets Regroup, Time To Consider A Three Headed Monster

TJ on how using a three headed monster at running back could help open up the Jets offense

It might be late in the game for an entire overhaul of the offense. From airing it out, to grounding and pounding, to a recent attempt at balance, the Jets have tried almost everything in 2011. Except for a three headed attack out of the backfield. Which won’t require an arduous rewriting of the playbook on the fly, in order to do so.

BIG PLAYS FROM SPEEDY MCKNIGHT WILL EASE THE HEAT ON SANCHEZ

QB Mark Sanchez is in desperate need of confidence and rhythm. He has to be better. Perhaps using Joe McKnight as a Dexter McCluster type can help. The second year McKnight can give the Jets a chance for big plays both with some extra pitches outside, and bubble screens from the slot position. Going in motion towards a WR position after initially lining up in the backfield. All of which require little from Sanchez, as far as reading defenses and making tough choices go.

LET GREENE HAMMER, BUT USE HIM LESS

Shonn Greene can continue to hammer away inside. However, despite what the Jets brass will tell you when they say that Greene gets going once his numbers INCREASE, a few less carries will limit the potential of the nagging injuries that seem to plague Greene the MORE he touches the ball.

LT IS A VINTAGE CAR, USE HIM WISELY

LaDainian Tomlinson changes the pace in the screen game and in tough yardage scenarios, where both experience and vision become top priority. His recent MCL sprain though, may require the curtailing of any foreseeable heavy work loads. LT will be key in keeping drives alive, but like a classic and effective vintage car, must be used wisely.

NOTHING WILL HELP THE OFFENSE IF THE JETS DON’T OPEN IT UP

The switch to three instead of two won’t solve everything on. The notion of injecting more of McKnight only helps if the Jets ALSO remember to open up their passing game downfield. Stretching the defense has been the very reason why the eternally emerging TE Dustin Keller, has found little room to work in.

The unwillingness to try many deep throws stifles the Jets many quick slants and five yard outs. Predictable routes that have allowed defenses to pack it in, leaving no room for receivers Plaxico Burress, Santonio Holmes and Jeremy Kerley to run after the catch.

SHORT RANGE CAN WORK IF THE BALL IS SPREAD AROUND

After keeping teams honest by going deep, the Jets can take solace in knowing that teams CAN be effective when employing a predominantly short range ideology. Take Denver and Tim Tebow as even the most extreme example. Most plays nowadays in the Mile High city, start with footballs being tossed as options BEHIND the line of scrimmage. Yet it is  anyone’s guess as to which Broncos ball carrier or receiver ends up with it.

GO DOWNFIELD, USE THREE RBs, IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER

So then, what should come first? Throwing downfield to guys like Holmes in order to back the opposing defenses up? Or should the Jets try to spring a few quick pitches and screens for yardage in order to utilize a Sanchez favorite, the play action, to go deep with purpose? Our answer is, it doesn’t matter which of the two is higher up on the scripted play chart. As long as both are tended to, and a potential threat, throughout the game.

THREE RBs WIDENS THE ATTACK WHILE PRESERVING GREENE, LT

Opening it up downfield is a must. Going with a committed three pronged attack out of the backfield is an idea for an offense that certainly needs a spark. What do the Jets have to lose by widening the line of scrimmage with McKnight? Adding his speed and carries to keep the oft injured Greene, and currently banged up Tomlinson, rested.

In order to survive long enough to even attempt a 5-1 finish, the Jets must get more out of Mark Sanchez AND go downfield already. Yet they should consider how a three headed rushing attack could aid in the process.