Initial Reaction: This Is Why We Watch…Jets Escape 23-20

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Disgusted. Just disgusted. It was hard not to feel that way as you watched the New York Jets, the team who likes to talk about being the best team in the NFL and is overloaded with talent, do everything possible to embarrass themselves against a feisty (dirty) 2-5 Detroit Lions team. Penalties? Every single one you could imagine at the worst possible time. Turnovers? Two more from the Jets. Drops? Yes, there were still plenty of those. Clock management? Of course, the Jets only had one timeout left heading into the final 5 minutes of the game.

It felt like there was no way in the world the Jets could surmount a comeback down 20-10 with 4:26 on the clock and one timeout. It might as well have been 30 points considering the way their passing offense looked. You can already read the headlines about the Jets sliding into another meltdown. Mark Sanchez was well on his way to another sub 50 percent completion percentage and more questions about his status as our franchise quarterback.

Then something happened. Unlike teams in the past, the 2010 New York Jets find ways to win football games. It doesn’t matter how ugly the game has been. It doesn’t matter how poorly they have been playing. This team has confidence they can always find a way to win and today, yet again, they did.

Say what you want about Sanchez but he stepped up again late to lead the Jets to a victory. He made two big time throws to Dustin Keller on their touchdown drive to cut the lead to 3 and then fortunately the Lions are the Lions and inexplicably threw the ball on third down, leaving Sanchez enough time to get the Jets into field goal position (big ups to Julian Peterson for that late hit on LaDainian Tomlinson…thanks). In overtime, he hit Santonio Holmes in stride on an in route, which Holmes rolled into a 52 yard gain.

The story of the day? Led by their quarterback, the Jets made plays when they had to. If you want an example of a young quarterback who can’t do that, look to our divisional rival Miami. Sanchez comes up big in big spots. Tomlinson, Holmes, and Keller all stepped up to support him when it counted. Nick Folk was money on special teams and is truly having a Pro-Bowl season.

On defense, the bad news is that Drew Coleman is back to being Drew Coleman. The good news is that Darrelle Revis is back to being Darrelle Revis. 1 catch for 13 yards for Calvin Johnson…nice work and welcome to the 2010 season, Darrelle. Revis Island is back. The defense played relatively well but there isn’t enough big plays being created. Not enough sacks and forced turnovers.

The Jets are a flawed team…accept it, but they are a 6-2 and on pace for a 12-4 season. In case you didn’t notice the NFL is filled with flawed teams this year. The consensus best team heading into this week lost to the 2-5 Cleveland Browns by 20 points. You take the wins when you can get them.

Run Santonio Run

Ten Post Bye Thoughts On The Jets

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1. Darrelle Revis is claiming to be 100 percent coming out of the bye week…we’ll see on Sunday. I would expect to see the Jets mix and match Revis and Antonio Cromartie on the opposing team’s best receiver in the following weeks. Obviously a truly healthy Revis would provide a major boost to the Jets defense, which hasn’t been it dominant self yet in 2010. There will be plenty of chances to for Revis to show the Island is back, with Greg Jennings, Calvin Johnson, Andre Johnson, Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens all upcoming.

2. I think coming out of the bye week, you will see Santonio Holmes and Shonn Greene both become bigger parts of the Jets offense. Holmes is too talented to only be playing 25 – 30 reps a game and Brian Schottenheimer has to find a way to get the ball in his hands more. Greene needs to help insure LaDainian Tomlinson is fresh for the stretch run in December and January.

3. The Jets need to keep rolling in their next five games and by that I mean anything less than 4-1 is unacceptable. Their final six games include tough road trips to New England, Pittsburgh, and Chicago along with a home match-up against Miami. It doesn’t look like the Patriots are going to let the Jets run away with this division title, which means they want to be at 9-2 or 10-1 (it is very possible if you look at the upcoming schedule) heading into December.

4. We are overdue for some trickery. I don’t know if it is going to be fake punt or field goal. A LaDainian Tomlinson option pass. Another Brad Smith pass…but something should be on the way after the bye week.

5. I am sure Rex Ryan has been beating into the heads of his defensive players how average their rankings are so far. He knows it would make a nice little statement to shut down a powerhouse offense like Green Bay this week. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Jets be even more aggressive than usual, especially if Revis is genuinely 100 percent.

6. It will be interesting to see how Mark Sanchez responds to his first turnovers of the year this week. If he can finish the regular season with single digits in interceptions, it would be a tremendous accomplishment considering the amount he threw last season. I have loved Sanchez’s aggressiveness down the field and hopefully he can connect on a few more over the next few weeks.

7. Post-Bye Offensive Predictions – Both LaDainian Tomlinson and Shonn Greene will finish with over 1,000 yards…Both Braylon Edwards and Dustin Keller will have at least 8 touchdowns…Mark Sanchez will crack 20 touchdown passes…Santonio Holmes will finish with 50 receptions.

8. Jason Taylor is going to end up leading the Jets in sacks. There should be a boost to his production as Calvin Pace gets closer and closer to 100 percent and Taylor’s reps become a little more limited.

9. I wonder if we will see Kyle Wilson play a significant role on the defense at any point the rest of the 2010 season. It doesn’t seem like it right now. Yet, you never know with Drew Coleman and Dwight Lowery.

10. This nonsense with Cablevision and FOX better be settled by Sunday.