The New York Jets did not play football today. They appeared at Denver’s stadium, went through some “football like” motions en route to getting their teeth kicked in 23-0. At no moment was this game competitive and the Jets appeared to officially pack it in at some point early in the third quarter. They lost starting quarterback Josh McCown, likely for the season, with a broken hand. Despite the feel good vibes from beating a mediocre Kansas City team, the Jets remain a well below average organization who is now three games under .500 and 1-5 on the road this season. Since their 3-2 start, they are 2-6.
Before leaving with an injury, McCown was struggling, like he has on the road most of this season. He left 6/12 for 46 yards with an interception and a lost fumble. Bryce Petty was abysmal off the bench going 2/9 for 14 yards and generally looking like he was playing blindfolded. Petty will start next week against New Orleans and likely finish out the season under center for the Jets, who will be heavy underdogs the next two weeks against the Saints and Chargers.
The Jets offensive line was bulled by Denver’s front seven all day, allowing four sacks. It was another tough day of sledding for the Jets running game, which ended with 59 yards on 23 carries. They never threatened to score any points and played embarrassingly conservative. As good as John Morton was last week, he was equally awful this week.
Defensively, the Jets were understandably gassed from getting zero offensive support. However, they began the game sleepwalking and were unable to make any game changing plays. Morris Claiborne had a disastrous afternoon, getting torn apart by Demaryius Thomas for 93 yards and a touchdown. He has dramatically fell off since a fast start to the year. The Jets had no pass rush and forced no turnovers. It was another quiet game for Leonard Williams, Jordan Jenkins and too many other components of the Jets front seven.
The coaching staff cannot escape blame for such a lackadaisical effort from their team today. Todd Bowles has been awful on the road since becoming the team’s Head Coach and it is getting progressively worse with each passing season. This team has limited talented on premium positions hut there is no excuse to lose by 20+ to a team as bad as Denver.
A few feel good wins this year should not cloud the fact that as of today the Jets have a Head Coach and General Manager who have been below average through three years, no long term answer at quarterback, no top flight pass rusher and no shutdown cover corner. This roster needs immense amounts of help and this coaching staff needs to get much, much better. Bowles and Maccagnan are the first Jets Head Coach/General Manager combination since Jim Kensil and Walt Michaels (1977-1980) to not make the playoffs in their first three years on the job. They are now 20-25 in their first 45 games.
The good news? It will all be over soon. Three more games and it is draft and free agency season…
Photo Credit: NewYorkJets.com