The Jets loss 30-20 Sunday in Carolina essentially ended their postseason hopes. Did you expect anything different? I didn’t. The defense hung in there until a senseless punt block at 16-13 opened the floodgates but lets face it. The Jets just don’t have a threatening offense. In a league that screams for owning one.
The Jets actually played reasonably well yesterday, for a team that can’t cover anyone downfield and has limited weapons for their own passing game. The Jets are mathematically alive heading into Monday night but does it matter? These 2013 Jets aren’t going anywhere except into an offseason with key questions that still haven’t been answered.
The Quarterbacks and the Offense : How Much Of It Is Ryan’s Fault
Rex Ryan has been an NFL head coach for five seasons. Name one of them where he has trusted his quarterback all the way through. Or has been able to. How much of the handicap that comes from playing around ones own QB is Rex’s fault?
Strategically, does he implore the OC’s to stay safe? Is he a victim of all of the QB’s drafted and signed by GM’s or part of the decisions that bring them here? Is Rex’s opinion a major factor behind not having a viable veteran backup QB ready to pilot the plane as these kids learn how to play?
Ryan improperly assessed his rushing attacks (remember how much he loved Shonn Greene as the feature back last year) and receivers during this time (“this is the most talent since I’ve been here”). Is it possible to argue that he has been handcuffed by salary caps and the opinions of higher ups on these matters and is a genius for rallying the undermanned troops as often as he does? Who is Rex Ryan?
He once was a loud, cocksure guy who brought life to a franchise best known for feeling sorry for itself. 2009 and 2010 feel like ages ago but that was Rex’s heyday. When he used to dial up blitzes with no fear as Revis Island shut down the opposing stud while the pressure was administered. Or demand the ancient ground and pound mentality because it worked in conjunction with his talent on defense.
Nowadays, the proud ringleader of a young stout defensive line tells us that he believes in Geno but nobody is fooled. His clichéd support sounds like the same story we heard about trusting Mark Sanchez. While the former starter’s confidence was crumbling late last year. The outcomes of the three game skid after the bye week where the 5-4 Jets were so afraid of Smith making mistakes, prove that his words don’t match his private opinions.
Ryan has motivated his players in New York since day one. All types. The stars. The waiver wire scrap heap types. The overlooked. The downtrodden. They all love playing for him. Especially during those us against the world matchups. I love Rex for that. He never feels a game is unwinnable. My problem with him is that he doesn’t always play to win.
If Rex is just a coach who needs a better quarterback and receivers to thrive, then it’s up to GM John Idzik to provide him with some. If Rex and his “defense first “mindset is now part of the problem in the offense happy NFL, then maybe it’s time to consider a change. Because teams that win solely due to shutdown defenses and feeding off of some old Bart Scott notion that “anyone can be beat” are a dying blueprint. There has to be more.
Sheldon Is Too Valuable
Sheldon Richardson had a few goal line carries leading to a TD by the stalwart rookie defensive tackle. It wasn’t worth the points though. I get it. Marty Mornhinweg lacks convention and is not afraid to use the teams better athletes. Using Richardson on goal line is crazy though!
This kid could be a perennial All Pro for years to come. Putting him in harms way carrying the ball is not creative. It’s stupid. Poor risk assessment. The Jets don’t have enough great players to be dangling one for salivating defenders all waiting to pile on a ball carrier. Use Tommy Bohannon if you want to ram the ball in with power next time Marty.
You Know Better Tone
Santonio Holmes called the Panthers secondary the “weak link” of the Panthers defense last but hasn’t Holmes noticed that the Jets wideouts have collectively been the weak link of this team since 2011? There was no reason to stir things up. I hate to use the word stupid again but…
After the loss WR David Nelson said that Holmes words prior to the game hurt the Jets wideouts:
“The first series, it was like they were just gunning for us. It seemed like even if the
ball wasn’t in one of our hands and (quarterback) Geno (Smith) was scrambling, it seemed like they were coming to be physical with us. They tried to set the tone from that first series. I think one of the players said to me, ‘You guys messed up. Tone messed up.’ Or something like that. But it’s part of the game. We expect teams every single week to be like that. It died down as the game went on, but at the same time, you could definitely tell that those comments didn’t go over too well with them.”
You talk the talk you better walk the walk, right? We at least expected a productive performance from Holmes based on his breakdown of the opponent. Not two catches for 14 yards. Talk about “weak.”
- Panthers HC Ron Rivera almost let the Jets back in the game. He went for it on 4th and 2 foregoing a chip shot FG up 16-6 in the third quarter. The faith in his defense and lack of respect for the Jets offense was understandable. It led Rivera to go for the first down but the Jets got a stop then followed with a nice TD drive to make it 16-13. Had New York come back and won, that would have been the turning point.
- The long screen to DeAngelo Williams for TD could have been stopped inside the ten had CB Dee Milliner fought for it. The rookie accepted being blocked and sort of watched the end result. Why not at least try to go all out to escape the block and hope to push Williams out of bounds? Show some fire kid. Some passion.
- Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell turned in some nice runs but when you see guys like Eddie Lacy don’t you wish the Jets just had a young beast at RB1? A real monstrous threat. Would be nice.
- Nick Folk is having a great year.
- The up the middle punt block was not a mechanical breakdown. It was a “Same Old Jets” play. Who claws back into a game then pisses it away due to an up the middle punt block rush unabated by anyone? You know who.
- Should the Jets go QB in the draft? I can’t stop to imagine how much that topic will be covered from now until April.