We present to you our first post game no huddle of the 2013 campaign, following the Jets 26-17 loss in Detroit. As the circus-less club heads back to practice before meeting Jacksonville this Saturday…without a ESPN tent, world famous backup QB, or ground and pound playbook in sight.
This year up in Cortland, it is about getting the plays down and getting the personnel situated above all else. A very refreshing and needed approach to say the least.
The QB Battle
All of us, or most of us at least, thought it was all over for Mark Sanchez. After the sloppy pick six on a busted screen play. Many pictured a typical downward spiral ensuing for 6 after that first mistake.
Then a funny thing happened on the way to the Jets anointing Geno Smith the job. Sanchez became more goatee than green headband. Showing a little old school grit. A little efficiency. A little confidence. Right before Smith entered, only to excitedly trip over his own cleats on a scramble. On a play that left him limping off as he scared the daylights out of the fan base.
Look, Mark Sanchez may always have a skittish side to him. He may always be prone to that senseless gaffe or two. If he can spread the ball around the way he did after the INT though, he can nonetheless be productive in this Marty Mornhinweg offense.
Smith looked poised, and threw accurately in the short game as well as on time during his brief stint. It wasn’t a big enough sample size to overtake the incumbent just yet however.
The fact, is we need to see more from both guys this preseason. We need Sanchez staying above the meltdown fray. Making enough plays to provide cover for the inexcusable ones.
Smith has to give the Jets a reason to send a four year starter with four playoff wins to the bench immediately…through a continued poise in the pocket, some big throws, ball security, and a scramble or two that show the run option weapon that only he can unleash.
Both can still win the job. Neither left the other in the rear view mirror just yet. Even though Sanchez may have saved himself from the brink of desperation.
Forget the Play, Rex Missed The Point
We don’t care that Rex Ryan admitted he missed the Sanchez pick. Or that he was hyper focused on his defense early in game one. We are sure he has watched the play from every possible angle in the film room since Friday.
What Rex isn’t getting is why this tidbit had any legs at all. There are those who question what organizational power he has left now that John Idzik is the new sheriff. Those same folks also wonder if Ryan is better suited to being a DC than an HC.
Those who preside in this camp may point to the hiring of Tony Sparano, his grind it out running mindset, and Rex’s sticking with Sanchez for as long as he did last year, as testimony to his lack of understanding offense.
Ryan, assuming that he truly isn’t untouchable here anymore, has to at least play the part of the guy in control. By explaining that his attention IS spread to all phases of the team all the time.
Don’t say “I didn’t see it” Rex. Say “Sanchez rebounded nicely after the pick but has to protect the football.” Plain and simple. Whether you saw the play or not. That type of coach speak would have deflected any notion that he took his eye of the field temporarily. Ryan should know better.
Barnes Brought It
Starting LB Antwan Barnes looked fast, energetic, and strong. His two offsides? We can live with the eagerness. The flags can even be diagnosed as very Klecko-esque of him, should he provide the motor he showed us Friday on a weekly basis.
Keep an eye on this guy. He is going to turn the front four into a formidable front five. Helping to free up the other pass rushers in the process.
Still Dreaming of the Trio
The Jets depleted backfield added two on Sunday following John Griffin’s unfortunate injury and subsequent release. Kahlil Bell, one of the two backs picked up, now returns to the Jets to provide needed depth. Chris Ivory finally practiced Sunday as well.
Overall, we just hope this team will get their originally intended rotation of Ivory, Mike Goodson and Joe McKnight in place by the start of September. The combo of power and big play speed they could provide is too enticing to have. It would be a shame if the offseason blueprint never saw the light of day.
Finally, We Liked What We Saw Out Of
Clyde Gates, Dee Milliner, Davis Harris, Kellen Winslow Jr, Chad Spann, and the O line: A unit that was flagged a bit early, but allowed no sacks of Sanchez. Giving him time to throw and enjoy a 10-13 night.