The Jets had it all heading into week 11 in Buffalo. A measure of oh no don’t say it, prosperity. The return of Santonio Holmes and Kellen Winslow to bolster the offense. The addition of Ed Reed. An opponent playing without their two starting wide receivers. After being given the chance to heal up thanks to the bye week as well. All of this good fortune was too much of course for the franchise that thrives when it’s cornered yet nosedives when the coast is clear. In some, ways, the 37-14 drubbing to the last place Bills was just another blown Jet opportunity at some breathing room. In other ways the effort was more cause for alarm.
The “Dave and Busters” Trip Will Trump All Local Sports Stories Monday. Watch.
Word broke early Sunday morning the Jets ditched final offensive and defensive meetings for a trip to Dave and Busters restaurant. Were the Jets taking their eye off of the job at hand by subconsciously overlooking the Bills or just taking a pre game shot at some additional team building? Maybe a little of both.
Regardless of determining the reasoning behind it, what’s certain is that this made for tabloid story will have more local legs than the Giants four game win streak, the Knicks rough start and even the Jets putrid loss itself. “Why were they eating burgers and wings and not studying more? Do other teams engage in this sort of behavior?” Etc etc. It comes with the territory for the team the media finds more endearing when they are controversial. One that that due to their dramatic nature in victory and defeat is for the diehard, both easy to love and impossible to trust.
When Is It Fair To Question Geno Smith
Geno Smith is a rookie. Everyone understands that. The ups and downs of any first year pro are to be expected and must be tolerated (same speech goes for Dee Milliner again too). Geno has undoubtedly made plays with his arms, legs, and mind that have helped the Jets get to five wins. On the flip side, when he tanks he implodes. This is concerning. Part of being a pro QB is keeping a team in the game when hope is still alive. In losses at Tennessee, Cincy and yesterday in Buffalo, bad went to horrific for Smith too easily.
Pick sixes and fumbles rain down on the Jets when Geno goes south. The question is, when is it fair to wonder if the behavior that turns a downward spiral into a bottomless pit will begin to appear less frequently? The Jets were only down 10-0 late in the second quarter. The wings didn’t need to come off the plane the way they did for Smith from that point on.
What happens to Smith on his way from being the club’s caretaker to it’s resident pyromaniac? When does John Idzik begin to start adding up the disasters Geno has while searching for answers regarding long term stability at the position? This is not about any subtle call for Matt Simms. This is about defining the appropriate time now or in the future to question Smith’s ability to keep it all together at the very moment when a winnable game is slipping away.
The Reasoning Behind The Deep Drops
In the rookie’s defense, OC Marty Mornhinweg had Smith dropping back deep early and often when the Jets threw the ball. As a result, Smith never found his rhythm because the Bills stout defensive front had a field day. QB EJ Manuel and the Bills used quick outs and screens to offset the vaunted Jet pressure instead. Turning the young Jet defensive line into mere mortals. We can’t understand why the same approach, especially on a windy day, wasn’t taken by Gang Green’s offense.
It would be nice to see the Jets feature Santonio Holmes in the passing game more going forward. The misunderstood playmaker had two long catches when the game was still in the balance, and seems to come up with a play if the ball is thrown to him. There needs to be a focal point downfield. Provided that the hammy is good to go now, let it be Holmes. Who can force defenses to pay greater attention to him. He’s a guy who can strike that type of fear. Feed him please.
– Nick Folk has had an amazing year. His miss yesterday in what seemed like a brutal swirling wind though, had an ominous feel to it. How did Bills K Dan Carpenter kick so accurately after Folk made it seem like FG attempts were a risky option? Did the wind just die down after the first miss of the year for Folk hero?
– Stephen Hill is an enigma. The kid has size, speed, and has played tough in some games this year. He just doesn’t seem to have a consistent feel for timing jumps, using his body, and spacing near the sidelines. Hopefully he figures it out before he slides down the depth chart.
– Sheldon Richardson had a tremendous read and took the proper angle in snuffing out a screen to Fred Jackson on a third down. The play didn’t amount to much for the Jets on Sunday but skills like that will help win games on future Sundays for a long time to come. This kid has veteran instincts and an all pro feel for the game already.
– 5-5 still means the Jets are in the hunt for an AFC wildcard spot. Yet being unable to string two wins together sure dampers the playoff spirit as a fan, doesn’t it?
– What would the Jets record be right now if Mark Sanchez would have been the starter all year long? Let us know your thoughts. Out of curiosity.