We are back with another TOJ New York Jets film breakdown. Check out previous editions right here. On to the #tape…
Glimpses Of The Future
The New York Jets have a handful of offensive skill position players who should be important pieces moving forward. We saw a few glimpses of their potential on Sunday, despite an overall sluggish outing on that side of the football.
Robby Anderson is unquestionably the team’s best skill position player right now. He is 24 years old and has shown notable progress from year one to year two. He is currently 4th in the NFL in catches over 20 yards and has scored in four straight weeks. There is no doubt the bread and butter of his game is vertical routes outside the numbers. However, he has improved on diversifying his route tree and on in-cutting routes in 2017. Below are two examples of Anderson moving the chains on a deep dig route. Defenses know to fear his speed and are giving him a cushion to work with. To his credit, Anderson is taking advantage of it by cleaning up the breaks out of his cuts and catching the football over the middle of the field.
Rookie Chad Hansen caught his first three NFL passes on Sunday. Similar to Anderson, Hansen was able to take advantage of a cushion below to convert a big gain on a deep dig route. Earlier in this drive, he also converted a third down with a full extension diving catch on a short comeback route. You can read more about Hansen’s game here.
Finally, part of the reason the Jets drafted Elijah McGuire was because of his ability to catch the football out of the backfield. On the season, he has 10 receptions on 15 targets for 100 yards. On the below play, you see his shiftiness out of the backfield on his arrow route and a flash of his hands that could hopefully be further utilized by the offense moving forward.
There is no stat more useless when discussing Josh McCown’s 2017 performance than his completion percentage. The Jets run an offense specifically built around short, safe passes to protect McCown from turning the football over. Beyond that, he regularly throws well short of the sticks on third down or chooses to take sacks instead of throwing the football away. These plays help your completion percentage stay up but do not help the offense.
On this 3rd and 16 late in the game, McCown has time but takes a 6 yard check down to Hansen instead of waiting an extra second and attempting the speed out at the top of the screen which is beyond the sticks. Is he wide open? No. Yet, there is 6 minutes left and you are down two possessions. Settling for a punt does nothing here.
Earlier in the game on a 3rd and 10, McCown locks on to his check down to Bilal Powell well short of the marker. He had a lower percentage throw on the vertical route at the bottom of the screen and the seam route from ASJ at the top of the screen but ignored them. Yes, this is a completion but it is also is a punt (and in this case, a lost fumble by Powell).
The pass protection below is not great but it definitely gives McCown enough time to either throw the football away or check it down. You cannot hold the ball this long, particularly when trying to come back with limited time in the 4th quarter. Things like this add up to keep a completion percentage elevated but an offense thoroughly mediocre.
Photo Credit: NewYorkJets.com