After each game he starts we will focus on one positive play and one negative from San Darnold, explaining what happened and why (just one positive play this week…it is the holiday!). At the bottom of the article, I will also drop 5 extra observations on the team’s overall offensive performance (this week just focusing on Darnold). For further breakdowns of the film, make sure you are subscribed to us on YouTube.
Big Boy Throws
There were some concerns in the pre-season about Sam Darnold’s accuracy and arm strength in the intermediate to deep passing game. Those concerns were always exaggerated but this completion is the type of throw that should make every Jets fan very, very happy.
This is a standard, 15 yard deep comeback route from a two receiver, tight end, single back look off play action. Darnold’s footwork and release is completely in rhythm and he drives the football into a small window along the sideline from a release point near the opposite hash. He is only 21 years old and will get stronger in the next few years but the fact that he can make this throw so effortlessly in December, outside at MetLife is a good sign of things to come.
Five Other Observations
- Where has the first down play action been all season? The Jets jump started multiple scoring drives with 10+ yard completions to Robby Anderson off a play action from their usual run tendency formations. This was one of the few games all year where the Jets were somewhat unpredictable and creative with their play calling.
- This has been the best three game stretch of Anderson’s career. He had more “big” plays last season but the diversity of his route tree and his consistency catching the football has been better than ever during these recent games. He looks like a complete receiver and not a vertical, outside the numbers specialist.
- The Jets made the right decision to give Quincy Enunwa a new contract, considering how weak the wide receiver market is and how flush with cap space they are. The deal *should* protect them from his health concerns and have a reasonable out after two years. Enunwa is a versatile weapon who is strong after the catch but has struggled to stay healthy and produce consistently. The Jets must keep adding to their receiver group beyond him and Anderson. Depth and more overall talent is critical to put around Sam Darnold.
- Elijah McGuire is a good complementary player in the passing game but he has the worst YPC in the NFL of any back with more than 50 carries. The Jets cannot be naive enough to think they are anywhere near set at running back this offseason…AKA pay Le’Veon Bell.
- Spencer Long has been better at guard than center…that doesn’t mean he has been an above average starter at guard. The Jets should be investing heavily into all the interior offensive line spots this offseason.