Initial Reaction – A Win Filled With Major Problems, Jets 2-1

The New York Jets won ugly…very ugly over the Miami Dolphins 23-20 in overtime

Today was one of those wins that wasn’t very easy to enjoy. Let’s start with this reality, it appears likely that Darrelle Revis tore his ACL. We won’t find out for sure until tomorrow but any educated fan understands what a season ending injury means to the quality of the Jets defense. A Jets defense that already is not very good. It certainly isn’t elite. It certainly isn’t great. I’m not even sure if it is fair to classify it as good. When you allow a rookie quarterback to drive up and down the field on you with his second and third string running backs and the collection of receivers Miami has, you have nothing to puff your chest out about. If Reggie Bush doesn’t get hurt, the Jets might have lost by 10-14 points today.

The Jets have no pass rush, no speed at linebacker and cornerbacks in Antonio Cromartie, Kyle Wilson and Ellis Lankster who play the ball poorly in the air and are susceptible to double moves. Quinton Coples and Demario Davis have brought nothing to the defense so far. Aaron Maybin is a non-factor and the tackling for the entire unit is below average. This defense has a ton of room to improve and Rex Ryan must start finding a way to manufacture a pass rush.

On offense, it is painfully apparent the New York Jets had no well defined plan on how to use Tim Tebow coming into this season. So far his primary use this year has been as a slot receiver, who can’t catch the football (sadly, I’m serious). The Jets have been awful in short yardage and around the goal-line. If Tebow can’t get on the field on the 1 yard line on any of the Jets attempts down there, why is he on this team?

At running back, Shonn Greene needs to be put on the bench. I have battled with readers of this site the past few weeks about Greene but the numbers and production don’t lie. 19 carries for 40 yards? 2 yards per carry? How could you defend this guy as the starting running back? Don’t talk about the offensive line not opening up holes because Bilal Powell had 10 carries for 45 yards or 4.5 yards per carry. It is time to make Powell the starter, Joe McKnight (the Jets aren’t good enough on offense to keep somebody with his speed on the bench) the 3rd down back and relegate Greene to 7-10 carries per game off the bench. He isn’t even reliable enough in short yardage to make him a speciality back for that. Greene is painfully slow and has no ability to break tackles or make people miss.

Mark Sanchez did not play well at quarterback today. Simply put, he needs to complete a higher percentage of his passes and improve his decision making. His interception in the red-zone was awful, regardless of the poor route from Jeff Cumberland. Yes, there were dropped passes. Stephen Hill dropped an easy touchdown and had an overall poor game. Bilal Powell had a key third down drop. Regardless, Sanchez supporting cast is weak. We knew that coming into the year. It is a reality that isn’t going away. He needs to find a way to elevate his play and the play of those around him.

Now to the positives because there were a few – Santonio Holmes as Mark Sanchez eloquently put it “played his ass off.” Despite coverage being rolled to him, Holmes racked up 9 catches for 147 yards and the key catch in overtime. Jeremy Kerley is turning into a reliable playmaker and the Jets must do a better job of the getting the ball in his hands more. LaRon Landry had a pick six and has been a substantial upgrade at safety. Sanchez deserves credit for driving the Jets for the go ahead touchdown and the game winning field goal and throwing for over 300 yards with the collection of receivers and tight ends he had on the field.

The Jets aren’t a very good team and have many things to improve on. Regardless, they are 2-1. 2-0 in the AFC East and currently in 1st place. A win is a win and we’ll take it.

Author: Joe Caporoso

Joe Caporoso is the Owner and EIC of Turn On The Jets. His writing has been featured in the New York Times, Huffington Post, MMQB and AdWeek. Caporoso played football his entire life, including four years at Muhlenberg as a wide receiver, where he was arguably the slowest receiver to ever start in school history. He is the VP of Social Media at Whistle Sports

  • while it is true that the QB is the leader of the offense and should be for the whole team, some times it takes more it takes HEART! and everything will flow they need to connect!!!!

  • Jason

    A great Review from someone that didn’t watch the game. However, if you had watched the game, you whould have seen sanchez throw plenty of good throws, Timbow getting a punt sneak for a first down, And a defense that has been playing well despite the numbers.

    It was not the prettiest game, but a win is a win. You need to watch, and not rely on stats to tell a story.

  • mike

    good write-up. this was, until the latter half of the fourth quarter, the worst i’ve seen sanchez look in his entire career, save for maybe week 17 last year. his completion percentage has been abysmal since the 2nd quarter of the bills game, and that’s because he has terrible accuracy on both short and deep throws. greene seems useless, something of a joke as an every down back (though to be fair, he didn’t have conner today). and stephen hill, after a good week 1, has shown beyond a doubt that he can’t be relied on to bring the ball in.
    on defense, there’s really nothing to be excited about. they can’t get off blocks, the tackling is spotty at best, and the corners (aside from revis), for all their athletic talent, are liabilities.
    basically, this was a win the jets didn’t deserve. sanchez should have taken the lead early in the third quarter, but as we’ve come to expect he threw an awful turnover.
    from a jets fan perspective, the MVP of the game was dan carpenter. if he doesn’t hook those two field goals, we’re looking up at buffalo.
    if the jets expect to beat quality opponents, like houston, san fran or new england, they have to make huge improvements on both sides of the ball. and that was true before revis went down.
    not a good day for jets fans.

  • Mark Phelan

    Joe – I couldn’t agree more.

    Sanchez has not learned to lead his receivers. ‘That’s a pass the receiver has to make’? Come on! Don’t force Powell to reach back for a pass. How many interceptions have we seen where the safety scoots up to pick off a pass thrown behind the receiver. At least Sanchez got angry yesterday.

    It Greene can’t mix in 7 yards runs along with his 2 yarders there will be no play action on this team.

    Tebow? He just made his play for they year. Unless Tebow throws the ball once or twice his options drop to zero. Miami had a strong safety or LB assigned just to Tebow whenever he was on field.

    Coaching? Please let’s get time management issues behind us. Let’s simplify things and do them well!

    Compare how well Westhoff runs the Special Teams to the Offense and Defense and it is clear that coaching is a major area to improve.

  • Bill Brasky

    It wasn’t comfortable because there was no rhythm. Swapping Sanchez in and out, one play for Tebow, botch the play, bring Sanchez back in shaking his head, then throws to Tebow and hits him in the helmet.. rhythm breeds comfort. The offense never settled in. There was no groove. Every play was a different play for a different reason with a question mark as to which QB was taking the snap and when, but importantly, why? Play to win, guys. It was (thought shouldn’t have been) a vindication for Sparano, but barely, and at what cost? A disheveled offense thats look to an anonymous leader for way too long. Until they say flat out “This is the guy we’re going to and this is what we’re trying to do”, you can expect more of what you saw on Sunday, but to pile it on further, now you’re down the best CB in the game.

  • bill skell

    sanchez throws high & behind his recievers all the time.The worst tackling team in NFL. the coaching is terrible.This is from a lifetime Jet fan