New York Jets Loss Monday, The Vent – Week 4

Joe Caporoso vents on the New York Jets 27-17 loss and their season slowly starting to slip away…

The start to the New York Jets 2016 season is scarily reminiscent of previous years like 2007 and 2014. Can the Jets salvage a fighting chance before too many early season losses pile up or will they continue to be steamrolled by superior teams, like they were yesterday?

The Jets defense was supposed to be the centerpiece of the team this season, with an infusion of speed and a continued ascendance of younger players. Offensive regression seemed likely. Defensive regression did not, based on how the depth chart changed and theoretically improved over the offseason. Over the first four games, the Jets have been a big play enabling machine, incapable of forcing turnovers or making game changing plays. They are disorganized, soft and being let down by players at all three levels of the unit.

Disorganized is when you see players running wide open all over the field and that falls on the coaching. Todd Bowles, Kacy Rodgers and every member of the defensive staff has done an inadequate job game planning and improving communication on the back end. The Jets give up far too many easy or uncontested catches and set themselves up to regularly be beaten by the big play, whether that is isolating a declining Darrelle Revis on AJ Green, losing track of Greg Salas or letting some guy named Tanner be open by 20 yards.

Soft is when you see teams repeatedly running a basic wide receiver screen against the Jets and having immense amounts of success. When this play is working for the offense, it means the corners are lazy getting off blocks and that both them and the safeties cannot tackle. This is a 101 football play and the Bengals, Chiefs and Seahawks have all gashed the Jets with it.

The let down is Calvin Pryor going back to the player he was in 2014, same for his fellow safety Marcus Gilchrist. The let down is Darrelle Revis being paid 70 million dollars to be the team’s third best corner. The let down is Lorenzo Mauldin being hyped as a double digit sack guy but playing 6 snaps on Sunday after a dreadful preseason and start to to the year.

The blame is on the players for underperforming AND on Todd Bowles for continued miscommunications and inability to stop the bleeding. It is also on Mike Maccagnan who is seeing a massive investment in the secondary go sour in year two. The Revis and Gilchrist contracts both look potentially ugly right now and his third round pick in 2015 can’t get on the field.

Offensively, the Jets have not been well coached either. Chan Gailey was terrific last year but he has not made the same level of creative adjustments in year two. Matt Forte was overworked the first two games and is now both struggling and hurt. He is not a strictly an in-between the tackles runner. Where are formations that feature both Forte and Bilal Powell? Where are other third down plays besides the in-cut screen to Powell that the Jets run 19 times per game? He is not succeeding in coaching around his quarterback’s limitations, like he did in 2015.

Finally, Ryan Fitzpatrick has been the worst starting quarterback in the NFL through the first quarter of the season. Forget about the interceptions, despite him being on pace for 40 of them and instead focus on how many points he is leaving on the field. It is demoralizing for an offense to scheme up a perfect play or for a receiver to run a perfect route but then have the ball delivered so far behind him, he must come to a complete stop. Fitzpatrick’s inaccuracy has been gutting the Jets chances on offense.

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We have reached the “moon landing was staged” phase with some when it comes to defending Fitzpatrick and making excuses for him. This is not a complicated discussion, he has played terrible football. He is being paid 12 million dollars but has been worse than 2014 Geno Smith through four games. Every rookie quarterback in the NFL has been better than him, including Cody ‘freakin Kessler. Case Keenum, Brian Hoyer and Trevor Siemian have all been better than him at a much, much cheaper price. It is almost like Fitzpatrick skipped the whole offseason in protesting for even more money than he received.

You know what bad roster management is? Bad roster management is having two inactive quarterbacks every week and a third quarterback glued to the bench regardless of any circumstance. Bad roster management is watching a multitude of mid round rookies be ready to play in the NFL while the two you drafted are still deemed not ready and could barely function in the preseason. So yes, Mike Maccagnan deserves some of this blame alongside Fitzpatrick and Bowles.

In the near term, Fitzpatrick is going to remain the starter but he needs to be on a shorter leash. The Jets needed to be 3-3 through these first six games to give themselves a fighting chance over their final ten. In order to do that, they need to pull off two road wins as heavy underdogs. Arizona looks to potentially be a more winnable game than expected but Pittsburgh? That may be another story.

It is kitchen sink time for the Jets. Can they pull off an upset win with their back against the wall as a touchdown or more underdog? If they don’t, we could be trending dangerously close to a 2007 or 2014 type season.

Photo Credit: NewYorkJets.com 

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

  • VonDarkmoor

    “We have reached the “moon landing was staged” phase with some when it comes to defending Fitzpatrick and making excuses for him.” LMAO and I cannot disagree with Joe on this point. Although he has been bad, he was not helped by his receivers either, with tipped balls that should have been completions instead falling for INTs, and a brutal drop by a so called TE.

  • Guy

    C’mon…Call it for what iit is (i.e. Dee Milner, Amaro, etc)… Pryor is a slowwww “extra linebacker”, good hitter, great in the box, can’t cover worth a $&@!, get Antonio Allen in there, known ball hawk Rex “ruined” by sticking the kid in at CB… Good/bad, fair/unfair, Geno is toast in Green, needs a fresh start, zero faith in him (staff/fan base), things get uglier w/Fitz? It’s Petty time, he has all the physical tools and showed a lot of moxie/chutzpah with the odds stacked against him (preseason)..CBs? Other than Skrine (“jockey” sized, vertically challenged to say the least..), all the coaching/scheming in the world can’t cover up the fact that NONE of them have speed, none can cover a generic speedy NFL receiver, is there anything to work with as far as that NE castoff CB we picked up? AT LEAST the dude can run/ has speed…Mauldin? Again, a slow “situational speed rusher” who had a few flashes LY…Mauldin adding 20 lbs? Hello? And we’re surprised he’s invisible?

  • phshaw

    You can forget about Petty in this site’s eyes. According to this article…”he could barely function in the pre-season”. People need to realize this season was never about the playoffs. Fitz against the defenses they opened with was always carnage waiting to happen. The aggravating part is Mac didn’t show the guts to roll with Geno. The results would’ve likely been the same, but you could’ve at least confirmed your suspicions about him or be thoroughly surprised at a fraction of the cost before you let him walk. If it is one thing fans cannot stand and will not tolerate is playing ineffective veterans “because he gives us the best chance to win”. i.e. Don’t believe your lyin eyes.

  • glegly

    Too early for a rundown of the college QBs that’ll declare next April? I’m only half kidding.

  • CP

    The problem with this Jets team is not that they all of a sudden suck, rather they just haven’t improved. This team and coaches are doing EXACTLY what the team last year did – the only problem is they are playing significantly better teams in back to back to back to back weeks, so their lack of improvement is there for everyone to see and complain about without a win sprinkled here and there for us to calm down for a week. When the Jets lost to the Texans and the damn Bills, they played EXACTLY the same way – Revis getting outplayed, Fitz throwing picks, the D not making big plays, and the coaches not making the proper adjustments!! We complained about it back then, and are saying the same complaints now.
    I’m truly worried about next week’s vent loss… it could get ugly.

  • Victor

    A few observations from being near field level at Seahawks game and keying in on as many individual players as possible: Revis just looks out of shape/lethargic. Could see obvious energy spike when watching Williams, Burris, Skrine who all look solid if not spectacular. Revis absence was barely noticeable on overall play/communication of DBs. Pryor is definitely nursing something, maybe leg/ankle but noticeably hindered in acceleration. He may also have been partly concussed after helmet to helmet penalty. Just slowed down considerably after play. Was interesting to see how the secondary went into panic mode on presnap calls after Pryor went out for a while. He is clearly critical for getting things organized on the back end but doesn’t look healthy enough to make plays. Russell Wilson was spectacular, reminiscent of those (very) few Jake Cutler games where every throw connects through impossible Windows. I thought the Jets coverage was decent aside from a few extraordinary plays that took its toll on overall stamina and agressivness of defense. Like the Bengals game, both Dalton and Wilson had uncanny games (75% pct?) aided by back breaking circus catches. Law of averages says that can’t continue week in week out no matter the opponent. As per offense, Fitz sucks, period. More telling than interceptions and incompletitions are his inaccurate throws that hauled in by recievers, lack of touch on tipped passes that lead to interceptions, and lack of proper reads for open guys. Robbie Anderson was working himself open routinely but was either missed, ignored in obvious one-on-one (even to me), or under/overthrown. Fitz is tough as hell and clearly does not lacks for confidence, but his arm strength is startling weak (as seen more by accuracy challenges than how far he can throw it). He can only play well when ahead, when they can commit to clock killing runs and short/inter passes. An effective game manager. Playing against the clock and away from the run is impossible for his talents. Summary: D looks like it can still be formidable and would be surprised if they beat up Pitt or Ari in coming weeks. They have been snake bitten as much as being victimized by busted plays. Breaks should come there way soon which should help. Offense needs a break from Fitz turnovers – everything is predicated on that. If they go 10 consecutive 3 to 8 plays drives and outs, but don’t committ turovers, they will be in every game against any body. Defense and now legit punter are good enough to play the field position game all season long.

  • Guy

    Fear/cowardice and politics my Green Brother..Fear: “a known devil (Fitz? Pryor? Others?) is better than an unknown angel”… No b@lls…Cowardice…Politics/ego: Afraid to “call out” their mistakes/be objective..(I.e. Shell makes the 53? Scouting reports/pre-draft had him pegged as a “blob”, great at the buffet line, that’s about it..A “swinging door”/embarrassment in preseason, Vlad Ducasse is/was a Pro Bowler by comparison, but due to the fact that they traded up for “The Blob”, he makes the 53..Politics/ego..FACT: From our GMs mouth, “He (the blob) has the potential to be a quality backup/reserve”.. WHAT??? Bellicheat would cut a 2nd rounder, substitute him with a FA from Laguardia CC if it was the right move! Bowles/Macanahan, PLEASE don’t tell the fans (poop) smells good..

  • phshaw

    Guy…sadly you may be so right on target. When will we ever find leaders who don’t give a damn what the media says, what the bloggers say, what their veterans say. Like you said Belicheck would cut/trade/bench an underperforming player in a heartbeat. This brings me to Bowles – so far he appears to have a cautious, conservative nature. This likely leads to the unwillingness to put Fitz on public notice. Why is Geno on this team if he hasn’t taken a snap in a season like this so far? This season will tell us A LOT about these two men running this team.

  • Steve Sc

    Aside from the opposing receivers being wide open most of the time, what irks me more is when any of our db’s are in step with the receiver and do not look back for the football. There were a couple of plays against Seattle where this occurred enabling the receiver to catch the ball over them. These weren’t back shoulder throws. Isn’t that basic db 101, to look for the ball?

  • phshaw

    I have no illusion about Geno being a savior, however we know who Fitz is. In my opinion it’s a waste of time to continue playing him without a very short leash. I’d rather play Petty in the interest of knowing about his potential…but I’m assuming he’s not healed yet. Geno throwing 3 picks a game is no different than Fitz throwing 3 picks a game. Assuming the Jets are sitting at 1-5 or even 2-4, continuing the two average or below average QBs who are gone at the end of the year is poor strategy.

  • Guy

    On our matador “OLE!”/turnstile secondary: what’s to lose picking up Darrin Walls (free, a final cut by Lions)? No, he’s not/never was Deion Sanders, but very serviceable, steady, never had ONE “Cro like” meltdown day, smart/”heady”, never an embarrassment….Assuming (big assumption, I know) he’s 2014, 2015 edition Walls, name one corner we have (especially with a hobbled Revis…(though healthy he ain’t great) who’s better/more competent than Walls? C’mon, bring him in, what’s to lose, dump one of our “one dimensional….and that dimension ain’t great” TEs to make room, Johnny Manziel, Matt Cassel, John Elway (today, suited up to play) would shred our secondary now…

  • markr

    It’s scary how bad we are in coverage, from linebackers to CBs to safeties. Our D line is the only bright spot, and the other d units are significantly under performing. Lee has looked decent, but nothing positive to say about the rest of them. Pitt is likely going to put on a show with their air attack.