Jets vs. Colts: Game Breakdown

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First a few updates:

1. The Jets announced their team awards today: Darrelle Revis was the team MVP (no-brainer), Thomas Jones won the Dennis Byrd Award for most inspirational player, D’Brickashaw Ferguson won the Marty Lyons Award for his off the field work, and David Harris won the Ed Block Courage Award.

2. The Jets appear to be 100 percent healthy heading into the Colts game, with backup offensive lineman/tight end Robert Turner returning from injury.

3. How about those Knicks? 11-17? They have been bad enough the past ten years that I am excited about a 11-17 record. Quick shout out to my friend Dan who is still an adamant Nets fan despite them just losing to the Timberwolves to fall to 2-28…yikes. Don’t worry Dan, you can keep voting for Brook Lopez for the all-star game 28 times a day to counter all those losses. At least the Cowboys will probably choke and allow the Giants to get in the playoffs so you can watch me suffer through another year of watching them playing in January, while the Jets head off on their yearly vacation.

4. Here’s hoping Santa brings the following to the Jets: Better hands for Shonn Greene and Braylon Edwards, the ability to read a defense for Mark Sanchez, the ability to compose an intelligent game-plan for Brian Schottenheimer, the ability to impersonate Darrelle Revis for Lito Shepppard and Donald Strickland, the ability to become a NFL player for Vernon Gholston, and the ability to become a holder for Kellen Clemens.

Jets vs. Colts: Game Breakdown

Offense: The Jets need to hold the ball and gain a significant advantage in time of possession. Thomas Jones and the Jets running game needs to prove they are the league’s best rushing attack by chewing up clock and taking the pressure off Mark Sanchez. However, Sanchez is going to have to protect the football, as in zero turnovers and convert some short throws to keep the chains moving. Can the Jets complete a screen pass? Thomas Jones has 9 catches this season and Shonn Greene has zero. Dustin Keller hasn’t caught a screen since week one. The Jets need to find a short passing game that can substitute for a running game occasionally.

I don’t want Sanchez taking shots down the field. The Colts have an opportunistic defense and will make big plays. I want to see Sanchez go 14/18 for 150 yards with zero turnovers. Thomas Jones and Shonn Greene will have to do the heavy lifting and be the guys who put the ball in the end-zone. You would figure for the Jets to have a chance they are going to need at least 24 points and some of those are going to probably have to come from their defense or special teams.

PhotobucketDefense: The league’s #1 ranked defense, who can’t seem to find a stop when it matters most is going to have to play the game of their lives. I have faith in Darrelle Revis to do his job on Reggie Wayne. I have faith in the Jets front seven in slowing down the Colts anemic running game. What I am worried about is Lito Sheppard, Donald Strickland, and Kerry Rhodes matching up with Pierre Garcon, Austin Collie, and of course Dallas Clark. Beyond that, I am worried about the Jets getting to Peyton Manning. The Jets are a defense that need to blitz to get pressure and Manning is the type of quarterback who makes teams pay for coming after him.

The Jets need sacks and turnovers to win this game. They need a defensive touchdown or the defense to at least set up easy points for the offense. Manning has to be hit early and often. They need to have Jim Caldwell considering pulling Manning because he is hitting the turf too many times.

Special Teams: The Jets must win this third of the game. They need to make all their field goals, create a big play with a return or fake punt and avoid allowing the Colts any cheap big plays on special teams.

I Think A Major Upset Over the Colts Every 40 Years Is Reasonable

Jets Playoff Pipe Dream: Week 16 Viewing Guide

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First a few updates:

1. The Jets brought in former Bengals running back Chris Perry for a workout. I am not sure what the motivation is behind looking at him. Obviously, with Leon returning from an injury, Thomas Jones being at the end of his contract, and Shonn Greene having fumbling problems, running back will be an interesting position to watch this off-season.

2. I am really enjoying the diva Brett Favre revealing himself to be the selfish player he is. When the Jets don’t make the playoffs, you can bet I will be rooting for an early exit for the Vikings. Imagine the media storm that would rain down on a different player, if they refused to come out of the game when their coach pulled them?

Jets Playoff Pipe Dream: Week 16 Viewing Guide

Ignorance is going to be bliss for me in week 16. This Friday I will be leaving for Italy and not returning until the following Friday. I will have my cell phone off and no access to computers, which will allow me to walk around for a whole week with the bizarre hope that everything broke the Jets way in week 16 and they will be playing for a playoff spot in week 17. When I return from the airport, I will have a DVD copy of the game waiting for me, then watch it and then look over all the week 16 scores.

Are the Jets still alive as of today? For some off reason…yes. Basically, here is what the Jets need:

  • The Jets must beat both Indy and Cincy.
  • Jacksonville must lose 1 of their last 2 (against New England or Cleveland).
  • Denver must lose 1 of their last 2 (against Philly or Kansas City).
  • Miami must lose 1 of their last 2 (against Houston or Pittsburgh).

Under this scenario, the Jets and Ravens would make the playoffs.

New York Jets (7-7) at Indianapolis Colts (14-0) – The playoff pipe dream likely comes to end when the Jets travel to Indianapolis to the face the undefeated Colts. I would expect the Colts starters to play most of the game and if it is close, to play the entire game. The Jets simply don’t have enough offense to win this game, unless Mark Sanchez finally decides to play like a NFL quarterback.

Jacksonville Jaguars (7-7) At New England Patriots (9-5) – We need our old friends in New England to take care of the Jaguars because in the scenario where the Jets beat Indy, you don’t want to be relying on Eric Mangini and the Browns to beat Jacksonville in week 17.

Denver Broncos (8-6) At Philadelphia Eagles (10-4) – The Eagles have been red-hot and should be able to handle the fading Broncos, who are only 2-6 after their 6-0 start.

Houston Texans (7-7) At Miami Dolphins (7-7) – I think if the Dolphins lose one of their final two, it will be the following week against Pittsburgh but there is no reason not to root for the Texans to knock them out this week.

Baltimore Ravens (8-6) At Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7) – The Jets have a tie breaker with Pittsburgh but not with Baltimore so root for the defending champs, who we will also need to beat Miami in week 17.

So your saying there’s a chance?

NFL Week 15 Recap/Jets vs. Colts First Look

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First a few updates:

1. I really enjoyed Rex Ryan completely changing his tune in his Monday press conference…pretty funny stuff going from the “we are completely done..we suck” to the “hey are probably we going to the playoffs and we are going to fight like hell” attitude.

2. The game highlights section has been updated.

AFC East Observations

New England Patriots – I have had enough of hearing the Tom Brady/Randy Moss/New England storylines. Why does the 10thbest team in the NFL get the most coverage? Randy Moss didn’t dominate on Sunday, he had 70 yards receiving. Tom Brady went 11/23 for 115 yards with a INT…wow pro bowl stuff right there. The only reason New England won’t be one and done in the playoffs is because the NFL has already penciled them in to the Saturday night wild card game and they are planning to dump 19 feet of snow on the field. I can already see something like Jacksonville vs New England on Saturday night in a blizzard with the Pats running it up.

Miami Dolphins – Tough loss for the Dolphins who have decided to join the Jets in mediocrity at 7-7, thanks to their quarterback throwing three interceptions. I don’t see Miami getting in the playoffs, but if they do and play in New England in the first round, I will be watching LOST re-runs instead of that game.

Buffalo Bills – Why waste article space on this horrific franchise?

Other NFL Observations

How does Denver lose a game of that importance at home to Oakland? They are like the Jets with the December meltdowns…I am thinking Kansas City is regretting that Matt Cassell trade…Watch out, the Cleveland Browns are on a two game winning streak…The Giants/Redskins game was one of the least competitive football games I have ever seen…Yes, I am really enjoying the meltdown Minnesota is about to have, they are going to play themselves right into a first round exit, nice.

TOJ NFL Power Rankings (Only teams with a playoff pulse are ranked, no matter how weak that pulse is)

  1. Indianapolis Peyton Mannings (14-0) – Rest is always a good decision Jim Caldwell.
  2. San Diego Chargers (11-3) – Looking forward to that Colts/Chargers AFC title game.
  3. New Orleans Saints (13-1) – Still can’t believe they lost to Dallas.
  4. Philadelphia Eagles (10-4) – Desean Jackson is a beast.
  5. Minnesota Vikings (11-3) – I guess Favre is the coach and the quarterback now, which will make it double sweet when their playoff run flames out.
  6. Arizona Cardinals (9-5) – Life is easy in the NFC West.
  7. Green Bay Packers (9-5) – Where Defensive POY Charles Woodson during those 503 passing yards?
  8. Cincinnati Bengals (9-5) – Better effort than I expected in San Diego.
  9. Dallas Cowboys (9-5) – Biggest win of Tony Romo’s career last Saturday night.
  10. New England Patriots (9-5) – Another AFC East title.
  11. Baltimore Ravens (8-6) – Huge game coming up in Pittsburgh.
  12. Tennessee Titans (7-7) – Won 7 of their last 8.
  13. New York Giants (8-6) – Still breathing in the NFC wild card race.
  14. Denver Broncos (8-6) – Lost to Oakland…really? About to lose in Philly.
  15. Jacksonville Jaguars (7-7) – Don’t see them winning in New England.
  16. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7) – Huge game versus Ravens.
  17. Miami Dolphins (7-7) – Should handle Houston at home.
  18. New York Jets (7-7) – Received all the help in the world and couldn’t capitalize.
  19. Houston Texans (7-7) – The bottom of all the 7-7 teams.

Jets/Colts First Look

This whole thing comes down to how much the Colts starters will play. I expect the Jets to blitz the crap out of Manning in the first quarter and try to get some shots on him to convince Jim Caldwell to pull him, yet Manning coaches the team anyway so it might not matter. Can’t you see the Jets beating the Colts backups 20-10 in the fourth quarter, running their mouths like they always do, pissing Peyton Manning off who then decides to check himself back in and lead his team to a 24-20 victory? I can. Realize this, if the Colts starters play the whole game, the Jets can’t win.

Grading Out Jets/Falcons Game

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First a few updates:

1. I’m not going to get on Rex Ryan for thinking the Jets were mathematically eliminated from the playoffs after yesterday’s game. Who could figure out this AFC mess, where somehow the Jets still remain within reasonable distance of a playoff spot? I spent an hour today messing with that Yahoo playoff generator and it is scary how alive the Jets still are…of course all scenarios involve them winning football games, a difficult task for a team with a choke artist defense, a terrible quarterback, and no kicking game…well maybe that was harsh but I am still bitter from yesterday.

2. Here is some more bitterness…glad to see Chad Henne throw three picks and blow the game for Miami in OT…tired of seeing the Randy Moss “silence his critics and is still dominant” story angle, the guy had 5 catches for 70 yards against Buffalo…the Buffalo Bills who haven’t made the playoffs since I was in like 6th grade. There I got my shots in on all the AFC East teams.

3. The stats have been updated…20 interceptions…yes 20.

Grading Out Jets/Falcons Game…quick and sarcastic version

Quarterbacks (F) – Well at least he only threw 3 interceptions, not 4 like against New England or 5 like against Buffalo. Why not throw 3 picks against the worst secondary in football? Mark…there is safeties on a defense…they play over the top, they are the guys who keep stepping in and intercepting your passes. This isn’t a USC September game against Oregon State…oh wait, never mind you lost to them too.

Running Backs (C) – Tough day for Thomas Jones who gets a pass because he has been great all year…obviously the unsportsmanlike penalty is unacceptable. Shonn Greene was also quiet. You have a better chance of seeing Mark Sanchez making a Pro Bowl than seeing Danny Woodhead break a tackle.

Wide Receivers (B) – Great day from Braylon who is earning that new contract. Cotchery did his job as usual. Brad Smith is starting to play well on a weekly basis.

The Tight Ends are too irrelevant on this offense to be assigned a grade.

Offensive Line (D) – One of their worst games of the year…the penalty on Alan Faneca at the end of the game was a terrible call however.

Defensive Line (C) – Good job against the run but zero sacks….and zero snowballs thrown by Shaun Ellis.

Linebackers (C) – Nobody has talked more trash on a more average team than Bart Scott. Bryan Thomas has done his best Vernon Gholston impression most of the season.

Secondary (B) – Darrelle Revis is as good as it gets but if he has one thing to improve on, it is catching the football. Kerry Rhodes played his best game of the season.

Special Teams (F) – Kellen Clemens would a great holder/#3 quarterback in the USFL.

Coaching (F) – Do I need to explain?

Jets “Highlights”

Jets vs. Falcons Prediction

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First a few updates:

1. As expected Mark Sanchez was named the starter for Sunday…big shocker there. He will play with two knee braces on, which is what every fan wants to see from their 23 year old franchise quarterback. It is going to be cold and potentially snowing on Sunday, so it is a good chance for Sanchez to prove he could play in the cold weather.

2. Good for the Colts beating the Jaguars last night, which was a big help for the Jets. Bad for the Colts for deciding to play their starters, which means a Jets playoff birth is likely going to involve ending a team’s perfect season in their building…I look forward to finding the out the result from my hotel room in Venice courtesy of NFL Game Rewind.

Jets vs. Falcons Prediction

This has been one of the more bizarre Jets seasons in recent memory…from a surprisingly strong start, to some ridiculously creative, painful losses, to getting embarrassed in New England, to a random three game winning streak that has somehow stuck them in the middle of the playoff race. The Jets have the league’s #1 total defense, #1 passing defense, and #1 rushing attack…and yet they are a 7-6 team who is longshot to make the postseason.

For some reason I see the entire Jets season coming down to next week, coming down to beating the undefeated Colts in their building. I think if the Jets win out, they’ll find a way to get in. Do I think they will beat Indy? That is an article for another week…however, for this week I got a good feeling…maybe it is the holidays, maybe it is the fact I am finally recovering from my strep throat/103 fever combination, maybe it is because I am finally ‘freakin done with all my grad school finals, but Sunday is going to be a good day for the Jets.

I am predicting a strong  performance from the Jets defense. I expect a couple of turnovers, a handful of sacks, and the Falcons not to score more than 10-13 points. On offense, the Jets will run the ball to their normal level of success and yes hit a few big plays down the field against Atlanta’s terrible secondary. A little time on the bench will prove to do Mark Sanchez good and he will play one of his better games of the season. Final score…Jets 23 Falcons 10.

I think the Jets will get some help this week in the form of a Miami and New England loss and I think this is the week to enjoy this Jets playoff pipe dream the most because it is likely coming to an end next week in Indianapolis.

Jets vs. Falcons: Game Breakdown

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First a few updates:

1. Rex Ryan still hasn’t named a starter at quarterback for Sunday yet, but all signs are pointing towards Mark Sanchez getting the nod. He took 75 percent of the snaps with the first team today and showed improved movement, along with no swelling from practicing yesterday. I am not sure of all the drama Ryan is trying to create here, but we all know Kellen Clemens isn’t coming out of that tunnel as a starter with the season on the line against a semi-decent team. Sanchez needs to play this week. We need to see our franchise quarterback in a December home game that actually means something.

Photobucket2. Rex Ryan also gave a lengthy campaign type speech for Darrelle Revis and his candidacy for Defensive Player of the Year. I think the guy absolutely deserves it…and don’t hit me with the BS about Charles Woodson and his stats. First off, Revis has 27 passes defensed…20 freakin 7…beyond that, what elite receivers has Woodson shut down this year? Did he shut down Andre Johnson, Steve Smith, Marques Colston, Randy Moss twice, and Terrell Owens twice? I didn’t think so. Revis is the best player on the league’s number one ranked defense, on a team that is a making a playoff push. Check out that cool screen shot 0n the side from NFL.com, that a reader sent in to the the jets blog (www.thejetsblog.com)

3. The Jets signed offensive tackle Dan Gay to their practice squad.

Jets vs. Falcons: Game Breakdown

Offense: This is an easy section to write every week because we know the Jets formula for victory involves a run heavy, conservative approach. You are going to see Thomas Jones get his 20-25 carries this week, but what will really be interesting to see is how the carries are divided up behind him. Will Danny Woodhead, Brad Smith, or even Chauncey Washington pull some carries away from Shonn Greene because of his fumbling problems? I definitely would expect to see more of Brad Smith in the wildcat formation or involved in some gimmick plays, after his strong showing last week.

Atlanta does have a very, very weak secondary. Whether it is Sanchez or Clemens under center, the Jets have to be able to punish the Falcons for stacking the box and leaving their shaky corners/safeties on Braylon Edwards, Jerricho Cotchery, and Dustin Keller who has been invisible the past few games. I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Jets take an early shot down the field to create some space for their running game.

PhotobucketDefense: Matt Ryan and Michael Turner both did practice today and will likely be game time decisions. Regardless, the Jets defense just needs to keep doing what they have been doing…stuffing the run, pressuring the quarterback, and smothering opposing receivers. Roddy White will do nothing because of Revis but I am a little worried about Tony Gonzalez. This is a big week for Kerry Rhodes to step up in coverage.

I think whether Matt Ryan or Chris Redman play, the Falcons will have a run heavy game plan. Both quarterbacks have been susceptible to turnovers this season so hopefully the Jets can keep up their recent run of creating big plays on defense. The Falcons offensive line is also banged up so there will plenty of opportunities to get after the quarterback.

Special Teams: The Falcons recently signed Matt Bryant to replace Jason Elam at kicker. It is supposed to be windy, cold and potentially snowy this Sunday so it could be a difficult conditions especially for a dome kicker. Jay Feely has been putting together a great season and will likely be called upon to kick 2 or 3 more on Sunday.

Falcons vs. Saints Last Week

Jets Playoff Pipe Dream: Week 15 Viewing Guide

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First a few updates:

1. Mark Sanchez and Kellen Clemens split reps today at practice. Rex Ryan said Sanchez looked good today in practice but he will wait to see how he responds tomorrow morning before making a decision on who his starter is going to be. I would still be surprised if Kellen Clemens was under center again this weekend. Everybody who reported from practice today said Sanchez looked fine and was moving around with no problems.

2. Robert Turner is the only person who missed practice today with an injury. Dwight Lowery should be able to return to the line-up after missing the previous few weeks with an ankle injury.

3. I purchased NFL Rewind yesterday…quality product. Now all I need is a hotel with a good wireless connection in Italy, unless of course the Jets lose to Atlanta this weekend, then my laptop isn’t making the trip.

Jets Playoff Pipe Dream: Week 15 Viewing Guide

Three weeks to go in the regular season and the Jets still remain very much alive in the both the AFC Wild Card and AFC East race. They received some help last weekend since two of the teams in front of them (Denver and Jacksonville) both lost. However, Baltimore, Miami, and New England all took care of business… keeping the Jets playoff odds as fairly improbable. Here are the current standings and what games you need to be keeping an eye on in week 15. Dust off your Titans and Bills jersey…

  1. Indianapolis (13-0)
  2. San Diego (10-3)
  3. Cincinnati (9-4)
  4. New England (8-5)
  5. Denver (8-5)
  6. Miami (7-6)
  7. Jacksonville (7-6)
  8. Baltimore (7-6)
  9. NY Jets (7-6)
  10. Pittsburgh (6-7)
  11. Tennessee (6-7)
  12. Houston (6-7)

Indianapolis Colts (13-0) At Jacksonville Jaguars (7-6) – Very interesting game tomorrow night for Jets fans to keep their eyes on. Obviously, everyone is interested in seeing how long the Colts will play their starters especially Jets fans since we are playing in Indy next weekend. The best case scenario would be that the Colts play their starters for only a quarter but still find a way to beat Jacksonville or that they decide to play their starters the full game, beat Jacksonville and then rest their starters next week. I expect to see Peyton Manning and company for about a quarter, allowing Jacksonville to escape with a win…meaning we have to hope Jacksonville’s loss comes in one of their following two games.

New England Patriots (8-5) At Buffalo Bills (5-8) – Let’s go Buffalo…I have to say I got a good feeling about this game. I think New England is going to have a real tough time getting a victory in freezing Buffalo with an iffy running game and a questionable defense. The Bills should have confidence against the Pats since they should have beat them in week one and this game will basically be their Super Bowl since they have a chance to hurt the Patriots playoff chances. This would be a huge break for the Jets, if Buffalo could come through for them.

Miami Dolphins (7-6) At Tennessee Titans (6-7) – An elimination game for these two teams…I don’t know if Vince Young is going to suit up this weekend but obviously it would be a big boost if he did. Regardless, the Titans could still beat Miami with Kerry Collins behind center. Tennessee isn’t an easy place to play and the Dolphins have been inconsistent this season. Chris Johnson is motivated to break that single season rushing record and could be in line for a huge game. This would be another huge break for the Jets, if Tennessee could come through for them.

Houston Texans (6-7) At St. Louis Rams (1-12) – Why does this game matter? Jets fans want to see the Texans keep rolling and get back to .500 so they are confident/still have something to play for in their final two games against Miami and New England. Jets fans are going to be huge Texans fans in week 16 and week 17 so you might as well start rooting for them now.

PhotobucketAtlanta Falcons (6-7) At New York Jets (7-6) – The Jets have to take care of their own business for any of this to matter. I am going to be in the stadium on Sunday at 1 PM, constantly checking that scoreboard for the Titans/Dolphins and Bills/Patriots score and hoping that the Jets could keep their winning streak going. This is going to be a tough game for the Jets but I have faith in that defense and running game.

Chicago Bears (5-8) At Baltimore Ravens (7-6) – The Ravens have a relatively easy final three games and it is hard to imagine a crappy Bears team heading into Baltimore and getting a victory. Hopefully, Jay Cutler can remember how much money he is being paid, Matt Forte can remember the kind of player he was last year, and the Bears defense decides to wake up.

Cincinnati Bengals (9-4) At San Diego Chargers (10-3) – I will be rooting for the Bengals to catch a beating and start heading into a tailspin in the final weeks of the season. Maybe…just maybe, the 9-6 Bengals will be facing the 9-6 Jets in week 17, giving us a chance to beat them and hop over them in the standings…which would obviously involve Baltimore winning out and taking the AFC North title.

Oakland Raiders (4-9) At Denver Broncos (8-5) – You know that you aren’t a good quarterback when you are replaced by both Bruce Gradkowski and Charlie Frye…sorry JaMarcus Russell.  Denver has traditionally been choke artists in December but it would be an all-time choke job to lose to Charlie Frye in their own building.

Green Bay Packers (9-4) At Pittsburgh Steelers (6-7) – Jets fans are also going to become huge Pittsburgh fans the final two weeks of the season, since they are playing Baltimore and Miami. So it would be smart to root for the Steelers to begin playing better this week by beating a strong NFC team.

Playoffs?…We Gon’ Make it

NFL Week 14 Recap/Jets vs. Falcons First Look

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First a few updates:

1. Like the the rest of the Jets, I took yesterday off as a “victory Monday.” Actually, I have been suffering from a lovely combination of strep throat and a fever so I tried to sleep it off to be as healthy as possible for the final three weeks of the regular season. Yes, I consider my health of crucial importance to the Jets hopes for a miraculous playoff run.

2. According to Rex Ryan, Mark Sanchez and Kellen Clemens are going to split reps at practice on Wednesday and then he will decide on a starter. I would be shocked if Sanchez isn’t under center this weekend but maybe that is just wishful thinking to avoid watching another Kellen Clemens performance. The Jets could get away with playing Clemens against the Bucs, but starting him against Atlanta could be pushing it.

3. Rich Cimini is reporting there is a strong chance the Jets/Bengals regular season finale could be moved to Sunday night since it is the final game in Giants Stadium. If somehow, someway the Jets are playing for a playoff spot…that place is going to be rocking…and yes I will be finding a way to bring myself to that game.

4. Some impressive Jets defense stats compiled by the Star-Ledger: They are ranked first in the NFL in total defense, first in pass defense, first in points allowed, first in three and outs, first in yards per play, first in fewest first downs allowed…along with of course having the NFL’s #1 ranked rushing offense…and yet we are still barely hanging in playoff contention.

5. The Jets have signed running back Chauncey Washington to their active roster off the Dallas Cowboys practice squad and released tackle Ryan McKee. This could be a reminder to Shonn Greene to tuck the football away.

6. Rex Ryan was very complimentary about Kerry Rhodes all-around performance against Tampa, saying he was strong in run support and was key in shutting down Kellen Winslow Jr. Let’s see how Rhodes finishes the final three games, which will go a long way to determining his future with the team.

7. The Jets are currently ranked #16 in ESPN’s Power Rankings…slowly climbing back up into the top half of the league.

8. The stats, depth chart, and game highlights section have been updated.

AFC East Observations

New England Patriots – An unimpressive win over a bad Panthers team has left me a little hope that the Patriots could struggle in Buffalo next week and in Houston the final week of the season. Randy Moss is starting to melt down. Their defense is extremely vulnerable, especially to the pass. Tom Brady isn’t playing like a pro-bowl quarterback. Bill Belichick is coaching like a guy who has won 3 Super Bowls and can do whatever he wants…could New England lose two of their final three? Absolutely. Will they? Probably not, they are most likely looking at a first round loss.

Miami Dolphins – We are moving closer and closer to my nightmare of a Miami/New England first round game. Vince Young you need to get healthy this week, Chris Johnson you need to stay motivated to break the single season rushing record, and Tennessee you need to focus on getting back to .500 in your building. I predicted Miami to be a 6-10 team this year and they have now shut me up on that prediction but I’d settle for 8-8 and missing the playoffs. The Dolphins could just as easily win their last three games, as they could lose them.

Buffalo Bills – Congratulations on winning arguably the most boring game of the season…now let’s focus on upsetting the Patriots in your building. Just remember to play physical with Randy Moss so he quits early.

Other NFL Observations

DeSean Jackson is still running wide open through the Giants secondary…Fortunately for the Giants, the Cowboys annual meltdown will allow them to make the playoffs even if they lose another game this season…My Super Bowl picks, the Eagles and Chargers are rolling right now…Is it just me or does anybody think the Bengals just aren’t that good?…I was glad to see Detroit put up such a strong effort against Baltimore last week…Any hopes I had of Oakland upsetting Denver this week ended when Bruce Gradkowski left with an injury…I vote the Colts play their starters this week against Jacksonville and then rest them the following week against the Jets…Some of the more unconventional hopes I have for the Jets making the playoffs involve either the Broncos or Bengals suffering an epic meltdown and losing out.

TOJ NFL Power Rankings (Only teams with a playoff pulse are ranked, no matter how weak that pulse is)

  1. Indianapolis Peyton Mannings (13-0) – You don’t want to put Peyton Manning in front of the Jets defense in week 16…much too risky, right? However, feel free to beat Jacksonville on Thursday since their city doesn’t deserve a football team.
  2. New Orleans Saints (13-0) – I am happy for Jonathan Vilma…great guy and great former Jet enjoying tons of success with a great team.
  3. San Diego Chargers (10-3) – They are going to roll over the Bengals this weekend…would love to see them against the Colts in the playoffs.
  4. Minnesota Vikings (11-2) – They are going to get a much needed bye…I hope Green Bay gets a shot at them in the second round.
  5. Philadelphia Eagles (9-4) – Their offense is explosive and their defense makes big plays…a very dangerous team.
  6. Green Bay Packers (9-4) –  A great defense, a strong running game, and a big play passing game could equal a dangerous playoff team.
  7. Cincinnati Bengals (9-4) – About to catch a beating in San Diego.
  8. Arizona Cardinals (8-5) – Why can’t they beat the 49ers?
  9. Denver Broncos (8-5) – I’m not sold on them as a very good team, but who else I am going to put here? They are likely going 10-6 because of remaining home games against Kansas City and Oakland.
  10. New England Patriots (8-5) – They have a relatively easy remaining schedule so they should roll into the playoffs, where they will be knocked out in the first round.
  11. Baltimore Ravens (7-6) – As of right now, they have the best shot for the final wild card spot in the AFC.
  12. Miami Dolphins (7-6) – Let’s go Titans.
  13. Dallas Cowboys (8-5) – 8-8…here we come.
  14. Jacksonville Jaguars (7-6) – Overachieving team that will likely fall short of the playoffs.
  15. New York Giants (7-6) – Their defense is putrid but they can go 8-8 and still likely make the playoffs.
  16. New York Jets (7-6) – Mission improbable to make the playoffs.
  17. Tennessee Titans (6-7) – Big Titans fan this week.
  18. Houston Texans (6-7) – Big Houston fan for the rest of the season with games left against Miami and New England.
  19. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-7) – Big Steelers fan for the rest of the season with games left against Baltimore and Miami.
  20. San Francisco 49ers (6-7) – Hoping for a Cardinals or Giants meltdown.
  21. Atlanta Falcons (6-7) – Hopefully the Jets can bury them this weekend.

Jets/Falcons First Look

PhotobucketThe Falcons are in the middle of a free fall and have endured tons of injuries, especially to key players. I wouldn’t expect to see starting quarterback Matt Ryan or starting running back Michael Turner this Sunday, which is obviously a big help for the Jets. The Jets are also benefited by getting a dome team in their building in the middle of December. Atlanta’s biggest weapons on offense are Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez. White might as well not even bother suiting up because Darrelle Revis is going to take him out of the game. Kerry Rhodes will have a hell of a challenge against Gonzalez and a chance to show his value to the Jets defense. Atalnta’s defense has struggled all season, especially against the pass. However, if the Jets are smart they will stick to their ball control, run-dominated offense. Most people seem to be thinking the Jets are going to roll in this game, however I think this will be a close one. I like the Jets to get a home victory but it won’t be easy.

Jets/Bucs Highlights

Three In a Row: Jets Embarrass Bucs, Stay Alive in Playoff Race

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Three In a Row: Jets Embarrass Bucs, Stay Alive in Playoff Race

Another week, another ugly win for the Jets. It took more than half of the season but the Jets have finally found their identity over the past three games. When you look at the AFC standings, you have to be encouraged about the Jets still being very much alive heading into their final three games but feel a little disgusted looking at that three way tie at 7-6 with Jacksonville and Miami, considering the way the Jets lost games to them.

Today it was all about the defense, who completely dominated Tampa Bay. The Bucs are bad enough as is, but the Jets made them look like a division 3 team. They recorded three interceptions, including another one by Darrelle Revis who now has a INT in the past three games and is making a hell of a push for defensive player of the year consideration. David Harris picked one off on the first play of the game, setting the tone for the rest of the afternoon. Yes, even Kerry Rhodes got in on the fun with his third interception of the season. Calvin Pace, Donald Strickland, and James Ihedigbo all had a sack.

On offense, Kellen Clemens was okay. He started out poorly but got into a rhythm late in the third quarter, and showed some of his arm strength. Brad Smith was all over the place, finding success in the wildcat, on special teams by completing a 27 yard pass, and catching a pass. Danny Woodhead chipped in 52 total offensive yards. Thomas Jones continued to have a pro-bowl caliber season with another strong performance, finishing with 99 rushing yards and 2 touchdowns.

Back From Hiatus: TOJ TV Holiday Edition, Jets vs. Bucs Prediction

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First a few updates:

1. The Jets official injury report lists Mark Sanchez, Dwight Lowery, and Robert Turner out. Wayne Hunter and Alan Faneca are listed as questionable with illnesses, and Donald Strickland has been bumped up to probable.

2. A belated thank you to Eric Mangini and the Browns for knocking off the Steelers Thursday night. Three losses in a row to the Cheifs, Raiders, and Browns? Yikes.

Back From Hiatus: TOJ TV Holiday Edition, Jets vs. Bucs Prediction

If you aren’t interested in hearing me talk about the Jets/Bucs game, fast forward to the 1:45 mark for the skit.