TOJ Mid-Season Awards

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Here we are half way through the 2010 regular season already. The Jets sit at 6-2 and are on pace for the 12-4 record that many predicted for them. It hasn’t always been pretty but overall it is hard to complain at this point. Out of the final 8 games, only 3 are against teams who are currently under .500, so the Jets still have plenty of work to do. However, here is what our awards are looking like heading into week 10 –

Offense

MVP – Mark Sanchez – Yes, you can make a strong case for LaDainian Tomlinson but I am going with our quarterback who has taken major strides in the right direction so far in year two. At this time last year, the Jets were 4-4 and Sanchez had 8 touchdowns to 10 interceptions, currently the Jets are 6-2 and he has 10 touchdowns to 5 interceptions. Beyond that, he has led the team to two late comeback victories, something he never did in 2009.

Make TOJ Look Like An Idiot – LaDainian Tomlinson – I predicted before the season that Tomlinson would only have 900-1,000 yards of total offense for the Jets and be a clear cut #2 to Shonn Greene…whoops. Tomlinson already has 790 yards of total offense, 5 touchdowns, and is clearly the Jets #1 back. However, he has slowed the previous few weeks and I still believe Greene needs a bigger role in the offense.

C’mon Man – Shonn Greene, Jerricho Cotchery, Brian Schottenheimer – Shonn Greene got off to a slow start but has looked better as of late. Yet, he still isn’t being given enough touches by offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer who has been inconsistent at best with his playcalling this year and downright infuriating at worst. Jerricho Cotchery leads the team in drops and really who could have saw that coming. He is also only averaging 10.5 yards per catch, en route to a weak 272 receiving yards.

Make TOJ Look Smart – Braylon Edwards- I did predict Braylon Edwards would lead the team in receiving yards and put together a better than expected year and so far he is making me look good with a team leading 453 yards, along with 5 touchdowns.

Pleasant Surprise – Matt Slauson – Slauson has been very good so far at left guard and made sure none of us miss Alan Faneca all that much.

Pro-Bowl CaliberBrandon Moore, Dustin Keller (447 yards, 5 TD’s), D’Brickashaw Ferguson, and Nick Mangold are all putting together excellent years so far.

Getting The Job Done – Ben Hartsock and Tony Richardson aren’t pro-bowl caliber but they are getting the job done also at their respective positions. Brad Smith remains a valuable, versatile weapon for the Jets.

Defense

PhotobucketMVP – David Harris – Most people have been saying Antonio Cromartie, but I am going with the Jets middle linebacker who never gets any respect. Harris has been rock solid in the middle and is a huge part of why the Jets are 4th in rushing yards allowed. He leads the team in tackles and is tied for the lead in tackles for a loss, along with recording a sack and having 2 passes defensed.

Make TOJ Look Like An Idiot – Brodney Pool – I spent plenty of time in the off-season hyping up Pool as quietly being the Jets best addition this off-season…um, what? After missing week one, Pool has been average at best for the Jets alongside Jim Leonhard at safety. So far through 8 games he has recorded 19 tackles, 0 sacks, 5 passes defensed, and 1 INT.

C’mon Man – Jim Leonhard, Jason Taylor, Darrelle Revis, Kyle Wilson – I know the Island is back now but you can’t let him off the hook for contributing nothing the first 6 weeks of the season. Jim Leonhard has been a liability in pass coverage and hasn’t made any impact plays yet. Jason Taylor had a pretty good start but has been invisible the past few weeks. Kyle Wilson apparently doesn’t know how to find the football in the air or when to turn around, which isn’t good for a first round draft pick. He doesn’t even play on defense anymore, as the immortal Drew Coleman and Dwight Lowery jumped him on the depth chart.

Make TOJ Look Smart – Sione Pouha – I have always loved the big fella and he is putting together a great all-around season. He is 4th on the team with 32 tackles, recorded a sack, and somehow has 3 passes defensed.

Pleasant Surprise – Mike DeVito – DeVito has shown that without question he is capable of being a full time starting defensive end. He has also racked up 32 tackles, along with 3 tackles for a loss and is a huge reason the Jets are 4th in rushing yards allowed.

Pro-Bowl Caliber – David Harris and Antonio Cromartie have both played at a Pro-Bowl level to this point of the season, although Cromartie’s lack of big plays could keep him from getting the national respect.

Getting The Job Done – I don’t know if he will ever be a pro-bowler but Pouha has been terrific this year. Shaun Ellis, Bart Scott and Bryan Thomas have been steady as usual. Dwight Lowery has been good in his role so far in 2010.

Special Teams

Just a paragraph to offer high praise to this entire unit. Nick Folk has been unbelievably consistent this year, especially considering how he played in 2009. Steve Weatheford, fake punt aside, has been booming the football and great at pinning teams inside their 20. Brad Smith has developed into a quality kick returner. Eric Smith, Lance Laury, and Marquice Cole have led the way on the coverage units.

First Half Highlights

TOJ NFL Power Rankings: Week 10

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Ranking teams in the NFL is becoming a more difficult process with each passing week, especially since my top two teams (Patriots and Colts) lost last week. Regardless, here is what TOJ is thinking heading into week 10…feel free to express your feelings about my stupidity:

1. Baltimore Ravens (6-2) – An impressive win over the Miami Dolphins can’t be enjoyed long as they travel to Atlanta on Thursday night to face arguably the NFC’s best team.

2. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2) – They have a nice chance to flex their muscle as an elite team by taking down the New England Patriots at home this Sunday night.

3. New York Giants (6-2) – They are rolling right now but before we crown them, keep in mind some of the quarterbacks they have beaten this year (Matt Moore, Charlie Whitehurst, Shaun Hill).

4. Green Bay Packers (6-3) – Despite all of the injuries, they are heading into the bye week right around where we expected them to be.

5. New York Jets (6-2) – This team (and their quarterback) knows how to win close games…something you can’t frequently say about the Jets. However, they still haven’t played a complete game since week 4.

6. New Orleans Saints (6-3) – They could hit their stride out of the bye week, especially when Reggie Bush gets back in action.

7. Atlanta Falcons (6-2) – If Atlanta wants to show they are an elite team in the NFL, they can start by beating the Ravens at home in two days…who else is pumped about Thursday Night Football?

8. New England Patriots (6-2) – Well we can pump the brakes on the Patriots love fest for now.

9. Tennessee Titans (5-3) – Welcome to town Randy Moss…the Titans can bury another wild-card contender by beating the Dolphins on the road this week.

10. Philadelphia Eagles (5-3) – The Eagles still have two games against the Giants to grab control of the NFC East and with Mike Vick straight balling right now, it is certainly possible.

11. Indianapolis Peyton Mannings (5-3) – They just might be a little too beat up this year. Fortunately for them, they get to play Cincinnati this week.

12. Oakland Raiders (5-4) – The atmosphere for the Raiders overtime win ovet the Chiefs was simply awesome. They get a bye week to prep for a huge test against the Steelers.

13. Kansas City Chiefs (5-3) – Tough way to lose in Oakland but their second half schedule still makes them the favorite in win the AFC West.

14. Tampa Bay Buccanners (5-3) – The Bucs are going to be around the rest of the season as a legitimate playoff contender.

15. San Diego Chargers (4-5) – Phillip Rivers has been the MVP so far in 2010.

16. Cleveland Browns (3-5) – I can’t remember the last time I have been more worried about the Jets playing a team with a record 3 games worse than them.

17. Washington Redskins (4-4) – They need a victory at home against the Eagles this week to show they will remain a contender in the NFC.

18. Houston Texans (4-4) – 8-8 here we come…yet again.

19. Miami Dolphins (4-4) – 7-9 here we come. Sorry, I will still take Mark Sanchez over Chad Henne any day of the week for the next 10 years. Henne comes up small in every big spot he has been given.

20. Chicago Bears (5-3) – I’d be stunned if they finish .500 or better.

21. Jacksonville Jaguars (4-4) – See directly above.

22. St. Louis Rams (4-4) – Ladies and gentleman, your first place team in the NFC West. They can put a nail in the 49ers coffin this week.

23. Minnesota Vikings (3-5) – If they beat Chicago this week, which they should, they are very much alive in the second half of the season.

24. Detroit Lions (2-6) – Thanks for throwing that pass on third down with the immortal Drew Stanton.

25. Seattle Seahawks (4-4) – Just about as terrible as a .500 team can get.

26. Arizona Cardinals (3-5) – A brutal loss to the Vikings but they are still one game out of first place.

27. Cincinnati Bengals (2-6) – Well at least, Terrell Owens is happy.

28. San Francisco 49ers (2-6) – Somehow they can pull within a game of first place with a win this week.

29. Denver Broncos (2-6) – Renaldo Hill’s pass interference will be remembered as what started them towards a 4-12 season.

30. Buffalo Bills (0-8) – They are still a tough team to play every week.

31. Carolina Panthers (1-7) – It is hard to see them winning another game in 2010.

32. Dallas Cowboys (1-7) – Their whole team deserves to be fired along with Wade Phillips.