Turn On The Jets 12 Pack, Week 4 – Jets vs. Titans

7

The New York Jets have turned a few heads with their early season victories over the Tampa Bay Bucs and Buffalo Bills. They entered the season with low expectations that were exaggerated by many who had them pegged as a 2-4 win team. A closer look at the roster revealed a defense that was likely to be among the league’s best, a coach who has repeatedly got the most out of his talent and an offense that could have the potential for a few breakthrough performances. The Jets might not have projected to a playoff team but they certainly didn’t project to be among the league’s worst teams. 

Despite the wins over Tampa and Buffalo being encouraging, neither are really banner wins for this team to hang their hat on. The Bucs are 0-3 and in complete disarray and Buffalo had a rookie quarterback making his first road start. This week, the Jets have a chance to make a bit of a statement by going on the road and beating a tough Tennessee Titans team who has surprised early with their 2-1 start. The Titans are a physical, defense first team that is built in a somewhat similar mold to the Jets. While few would call the Titans one of the NFL’s elite, a win in Tennessee would a great stepping stone for the Jets and particularly rookie quarterback Geno Smith.

This game is a nice ramp up to the Jets traveling to Atlanta for Monday Night Football next week as well. The Falcons generally are considered a Super Bowl contender and Atlanta is a notably hostile environment, nevermind the bright lights of Monday Night. Nobody will expect the Jets to win that game, regardless of what happens this Sunday, but a win should help build confidence for this team and their young quarterback on the road.

If the Jets fancy themselves a wild-card contender, this is the type of game they have to win. Tennessee should be in the playoff mix all season and you need Conference victories and tie-breakers over teams you are competing for one of those two spots with. Are the Jets ready to get their first “surprise” win of the season? Let’s crack into the 12 Pack…

1. Bilal Powell will receive 20 carries but have much tougher sledding than he did against Buffalo, only finishing with 80 yards rushing and another 25 receiving. He will also score his second touchdown of the season.

2. Geno Smith will go roughly 20/33 for 250 yards with a touchdown and an interception. He will rush for 30 yards and be sacked twice.

3. The Jets defensive line will beat up on a somewhat shaky Titans offensive line (Rob Turner at Center!), keeping Chris Johnson under 60 yards rushing and sacking Jake Locker three times.

4. Locker will hurt the Jets with a few key scrambles and finish with 40 yards rushing and some big first down conversions.

5. Nate Washington will lead TItans receivers with 5 receptions for 70 yards.

6. Justin Hunter will make a big play down the field in the passing game, building off his momentum from last week’s game winning catch.

7. Santonio Holmes will follow up last week’s big performance with 4 receptions for 68 yards, including a few key third down conversions.

8. Kellen Winslow Jr will get back into the mix, finishing with 5 receptions for 55 yards.

9. Quinton Coples will record his first sack of the season. Sheldon Richardson will record another sack.

10. Darrin Walls will play very well in his first start and have a couple of big pass breakups.

11. Antonio Cromartie will record his first interception of the season. Jake Locker will complete a little over 50% of his passes.

12. The Jets will cover (+3.5) and squeak out a 14-13 win, in a low scoring defensively dominated battle.

12 Pack Record – Against The Spread (3-0), W/L (3-0)

  • Lidman

    Slow day Jet fans..as we wait for Tennessee, I’d like to pass on an opinion/rant piece I put together due to a case of insomnia (I felt like Jerry Maguire..’it was only a mission statment’)..Enjoy and feel free to criticize…

    Rex Ryan and Evolution

    From the moment he was hired, to the moment Antonio Cromartie slipped, and allowed V Cruz to race 99yds for a game, and momentum changing TD (for 2 teams), Rex Ryan generally received positive reviews for his performance as the NYJ HC. Sure, there were some ‘old school curdmudgeons’ who hated all the bravado and talk (Ian O’Connor comes to mind). In my mind, these guys don’t get it, it’s entertainment and a business and Rex was good for business.

    Since that moment, the tide has dramatically reversed on Ryan. Upon his arrival the NYJ ‘went for it’; signing, and over paying, for some f/a, and trading away draft picks in an effort to win a Superbowl. Why, you ask? Well, so Mr Johnson could sell PSLs and very expensive tickets to his new stadium; again, it’s business. Well, the past 2yrs were as much about overpriced, aging players, the lack of draft picks needed to restock the shelves (at below market levels) and poorly used draft picks. I need not bore you with the results, as they are well documented. Since January, the tidal wave of negativity has made it very easy to label Ryan a ‘dead man walking’. I mean who couldn’t put the pieces together? You had a new button down GM, John Idzik. Idzik was here to chart a new path for Woody Johnson’s ‘traveling circus’. The media lead us to believe Idizk was probably not Woody’s first choice. However, he got the job because he conceded Woody’s desire to keep Ryan. The media told us Woody wasn’t interested in paying $6mm, over the final 2yrs of Ryan’s contract, to likely watch him on some NFL pregame show..making more money. The media explained to us how the Jets would stink and Woody would then allow Idzik to bring in his own guy. Put a bow on it folks, that’s a wrap.

    This brings me to this past Summer and the NFL Pre-Season, where nearly every media pundit, print and/or radio, tagged the NYJ as having very little talent, and very little chance at winning more than 4 games (and that was the high side). I mean in it’s opening NFL Power Rankings, ESPN ranked the Jets behind both Oakland and Jacksonville, which is comical. I think this was more about ‘sticking it’ to the organization than it was about honest prognostication, but it certainly garnered headlines and generated callers, for radio shows. I could list the numerous links to stories/blog posts on espn.com and both local and national media informing Jets fans how Ryan was ‘subdued’, ‘not the same, ‘resigned to his fate’….et al. On top of that, the new company line of ‘competition at every position’ was Idzik’s and not Ryan’s. Even naming the starting QB was a ‘consenus opinion’, and not the sole responsibility of the HC. Mark Sanchez clearly outplayed Geno Smith during training camp, yet even before the 4th pre-season game, the Jets, to the media’s disgust, still had not named their starting QB. Then came the nail in the coffin…..

    Ryan’s decision to put Mark Sanchez, who by any measure had won the QB competition, into a meaningless game, with a bunch of back ups, blew up in his face. The media pounced, like a pride of lions to a water buffalo who had separated from the herd (sorry I couldn’t help myself). I mean this was a Shakespearean tradgedy being played out in the largest media market in the world. Still, Ryan stayed resolute, not naming a starting QB. The articles, blog posts and talk radio hosts all piled on: ‘Why in the world are you not naming Geno the starter?’ Ryan continued to use the word ‘competition’ and told anyone who would ask: ‘when we have a decision, we’ll let you know’. The media translated this into Ryan really wanting Sanchez (which is probably correct), but the Jets, all along, wanting Smith to win the job, which he had-even if it was by default. Ryan had checked out. He even went to his son’s first college football game, missing final cuts…the sacrelige!!!! Then Lavonte David gave the NYJ a gift….

    Since that idiotic penalty, the tide has turned a bit for Rex. Sure, it’s early. Even at 2-1, nobody is predicting a meteoric rise for this team, this year. I mean you could really make an argument the Jets could be 3-0, 0-3 or 1-2. But, like Parcells says ‘you are what your record says you are’, and they stand at 2-1 with a winnable game in front of them, and a relatively soft schedule beyond that. Now, slowly, we’re starting to see articles/blog posts telling us how Rex was right, by not solidifying G Smith’s status as starting QB, even if it comes in a ‘back handed compliment’ kind of way: http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/jets/post/_/id/27522/against-all-odds-jets-got-qb-situation-right. Today, the same blogger gives us another dimissive compliment: http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/jets/post/_/id/27914/finally-rex-too-shall-pass. I mean why does he have to use ‘finally’. Look, I don’t know if R Cimini is, or isn’t, a Rex Ryan fan, but rather than admit he, and every other media member who covers the team, might have been wrong, why he can’t just write a completely positive piece? I also think it’s shameless how he takes a pot-shot at Rex’ weight, in paragraph 3. What relevance does that to the team’s perfomance?

    The NYJ are 2-1, and time will tell us where they end up (just look at Arizona’s 4-0 start last year, including a win at NE, as proof of how early success can be misleading). They have 8 TOs, but have only allowed 16 points off them, even thought the majority have given their opposition a ‘short field’. The NYJ defense has been dominant. It would be foolish to assume they can continue keeping teams out of the end zone, if their offense continues to turn the ball over at this rate. On top of this, as great as their defense has played, they’ve only generated 2 TOs. Rookies QBs will make mistakes: the great Andrew Luck had 18 INTs last year. Their defense needs to create takeaways, to offset this.

    I ask: When is someone in the media going to stand up and give Rex Ryan credit? I think it’s generally accepted he’s a ‘great defensive coach’. However, how about his ability to adjust and evolve (I think Damien Woody has said this). How about realizing after how Sanchez was ‘coddled’, he needed a different approach with Smith? How about realizing that while his defenses were always top 10, his up front personnel was lacking? Is it possible he saw how the Giants, with a stand out defensive line, were able to make up for inefficiencies in the back 7, so he adopted the strategy? Is it a coincidence the NYJ have picked 3 defensive lineman, consecutively, with a 1st round draft picks (even as the pundits clammored how they needed offensive playmakers)? Is it possible he had the foresight to know there was no way they’d be able to afford Revis, under the cap, and they’d have to retool their personnel because the loss of Revis would mean they could no longer utilize his otherworldly talents in their scheme? Does he get credit for not only finding, but ‘coaching up’ guys like Damon Harrison, Demario Davis, Darrin Walls and Antonio Allen into being impact players on an elite defensive unit? We can certainly criticize him for handing over his offense to Tony Sparano. Shouldn’t we give him credit for recognizing that was wrong, and having the confidence to bring in in Marty Mohrningweg, a possible replacement for him, and allowing him to transform his offense? Sure, it can be argued that was Idzik’s hire and Ryan had no say. That might be true, but it certainly doesn’t appear Rex allowed that decision to to impact him negatively.

    Winning cures all. The Jets are 2-1, and a lot of it has to do with Rex Ryan coaching them. Back in 2007, the Giants were floundering. Evidently, Michael Strahan had a conversation, with Tom Coughlin, telling him he needed to adjust his style, if he wanted to get the most out of his players. Coughlin adjusted, Asante Samuel dropped a sure INT (active leader in INT, btw) and David Tyree caught a ball, with his head. The rest is history. Does Rex need to win a SB before he gets this credit? What if he goes 8-8, with the, according to ESPN’s rankings, the worst team in football? At some point, and soon, I think there needs to be a recognition of the job he’s doing.

  • Pingback: Today’s Jets Twit Directory Links September 27, 2013 | New York Jets Online Directory()

  • Mark Phelan

    Everyone makes mistakes…clock management….piss-poor challenges. That’s the way it is.

    What was scary was Rex seemingly not knowing what was going on. Especially regarding offense and personnel decisions.

    With MM in charge of offense, Sanchez on the bench, and the balls bouncing our way for the most part, Rex looks a lot better.

    The essence of your positive evaluation is that Rex has proven to be flexible, and evolve. Not sure if he has evolved or if Idzik has required it (MM).

    In any case, after 4 years we know Rex’s positives. We know his negatives. With a solid GM, and a top tier OC the team should produce.

  • Landon

    I think the Jets will have trouble in the running game but I think Geno throws for more than 300 Yards and has 2 TDs and one 1 Int. I think the Jets D has 5 sacks, 1 Int and one FF.

    Powell 90 yards 22 carries 4 Rec 24 yds 1 TD
    Lankaster makes another big play on D.

    Folk goes 2 for 2.
    Jets 20 Titans 13.

  • KAsh

    I did not copy it to my phone, but there was an article – I think on Bloomberg News – that explained how and why the Jets became the nation’s laughingstock. To summarize, criticizing the Jets stirs up a lot of controversy and gets a lot of attention because the team has very ardent fans in a city that is the home base for both the national media and the NFL; Rex violated a lot of taboos – chief among them boasting and then winning – that turned the NFL traditionalists against him; and non-Jets fans are envious of a team that gets more attention than their record deserves. The Raiders just suck; they cannot suck and be interesting.

    I do not think the article fully explained the amount of hatred for the Jets. But it is true that Jet-hate runs deep because of a lack of support from most or maybe all sectors of football. The ESPN power rankings reflect what all of the national media thought. If you go and look at mock drafts, up until a few days after we beat Buffalo, no one had us pegged having a lower draft pick than #5. A lot of people were mocking us to draft defense because the wideouts all fell into the middle of the round. The entire league does not think that we have a roster or equates us with Jacksonville. This will not change right away.

    Rex’s reputation will revive after at least two years of winning records or playoff appearances. The problem is that the rest of the league does not see him as a coach or a successful trainer. They were expecting him to curl over as there was supposed to be no there there.

  • joeydefiant

    This is going to be a blow out. I don’t see the Titans offensive line being able to do anything against the Jets front 7. 27-10 Jets with the Titans TD coming off one big CJ2K run. He’s going to have like 20 carries for 70 yards and a TD with a big 50 yard run. Geno throws 2 TD’s and runs one in.

  • Pingback: Turn On The Jets 12 Pack, Week 5 Edition - TOJ()