New York Jets – Look Towards Future At Wide Receiver

The New York Jets can’t make a knee jerk reaction at wide receiver

There are unconfirmed reports that New York Jets wide receiver Santonio Holmes is out for the season with a foot injury. Even if the news proves to be untrue, it is unrealistic to expect Holmes back before December considering how long his medical results are taking to be announced. This news has led many Jets fans to throw out names in desperation knee jerk reactions –

Plaxico Burress? It isn’t happening. Burress was a disaster scene in the Jets locker room last season. The team not bringing him back goes beyond being concerned about Mark Sanchez’s feelings as some have suggested. Burress was problematic for the whole offense. There is a reason he hasn’t been signed by anybody yet and has literally worked out for one team since the season ended. Outside of the off the field issues, he can’t get separation anymore. His skill set is not worth the headache. People go crazy about his 8 touchdowns last year. I have news for you 3 came in one game against San Diego, two came in garbage time, one against Oakland and one against Philadelphia. You take away the Chargers game, he had 3 meaningful touchdowns in 15 games.

Chad Ochocinco? Terrell Owens? Neither player is worth the side show. There is no reason for a long paragraph since neither is capable of being a productive NFL receiver at this point of their career.

It is time to face the reality that the New York Jets roster needs to be completely rebuilt. Why not start now? If you acquire a wide receiver, go trade for a young receiver with long term upside. A type of player like James Jones, who the Jets should have traded for this off-season but now might not be able to be had because of how productive he has been and because of Greg Jennings injury problems.

The other option is to let the young players play. You drafted Stephen Hill in the 2nd round. No, he isn’t ready to be a full time NFL receiver yet but you might as well give him those reps now and let him work through the mistakes. He needs to be your opening day starter in 2013 or you wasted another 2nd round pick, just like you did with Vladimir Ducasse and Kellen Clemens. Jeremy Kerley is a very talented slot receiver, figure out the best way to use him and make sure he is ready to fulfill his potential next season in the slot and as a rushing option.

Chaz Schilens has looked good in limited duty through four games. Play him and maybe he gives you a productive season. Now you have another option heading into next year, now you are building depth on your roster. Bring 7th round pick Jordan White back and let him play 20 plays a game, maybe he develops…maybe he doesn’t but at least you are giving reps to one of your rookie draft picks and not a 37 year old veteran with no future.

Don’t dump money away. You have needs all over the field to fill next off-season. Let your draft picks play and hope they fulfill their potential.

New York Jets – Minor Changes Won’t Solve Problems

The New York Jets need more than minor changes to solve their long list of problems

The New York Jets losing to the San Francisco 49ers yesterday should not have surprised anybody. It does not merit a shocked or angry reaction. The approach to the game and the emphatic manner in which they lost does however merit a response. Hopefully that response is taking place among the coaching staff and front office of the organization as they take today and tomorrow to reflect on a few harsh realities.

On the game film from yesterday, the coaching staff is going to see what a legitimate Super Bowl contender looks like. The 49ers are the team Rex Ryan wants. A smash-mouth, versatile running game supported by an efficient quarterback on offense and an elite defense that can get after the quarterback and force turnovers. The New York Jets can’t be them because Muhammad Wilkerson isn’t Justin Smith. David Harris isn’t Patrick Willis. Quinton Coples isn’t Aldon Smith. Bart Scott isn’t NaVorro Bowman. Not even remotely close. Shonn Greene isn’t half the running back Frank Gore is. Dustin Keller is a very poor man’s Vernon Davis. Colin Kapernick is a fast Tim Tebow who can throw the football. And right now, Mark Sanchez isn’t anywhere near the quarterback Alex Smith is and that is saying something because Smith isn’t very good.

The Jets don’t have Super Bowl talent. The Jets have 8-8 talent with zero depth. There is no middle class on the Jets roster. There is no capable backups with bright futures. Continuing the San Francisco comparison because it really drives it home – the 49ers 3rd and 4th running backs, Brandon Jacobs and LaMichael James could very well be the Jets 1st and 2nd best running backs. The 49ers 4th, 5th, and 6th wide receivers, Kyle Williams, AJ Jenkins and Ted Ginn Jr would be the Jets top three receivers this Monday night.

The lack of talent and depth gets dumped on Mike Tannebaum’s lap and it appears more analysts are finally jumping on the Mike Tannenbaum is doing an awful job train we have been driving here at TOJ the past year or so. When you have a pair of lackluster off-seasons in a row and don’t draft well it catches up to you. Unfortunately, there is no cure all trade or signing that can be made at this point. It is going to take a purging of overpriced veterans this off-season and a wise use of available cap space, something that Tannenbaum shouldn’t be given the chance to do but probably will because of his relationship with Woody Johnson.

Where does that leave the 2012 Jets right now? The problem with the game-plan against San Francisco was that the Jets approached the game like they had enough talent to compete with the 49ers. They mistakenly thought they could play their normal defensive scheme minus Darrelle Revis and stop their offense. They thought they could run a standard offensive game plan and score on the 49ers defense. They could not have been more wrong and that is on Rex Ryan’s hubris.

Similar to Tannenbaum, Ryan does a poor job of self-scouting his own talent. He overestimates the players on his roster. Hopefully, yesterday’s game tape will be a needed hard smack in the face resulting in Ryan realizing his team’s deficiencies. Against San Francisco the Jets should have been emptying the book on offense, mixing in gadget plays and new formations in hopes of catching their defense off guard. On defense, they should have been trying new formations, blitz schemes and personnel. Houston is coming to town this Monday and they are a better all-around team than San Francisco. If the Jets play straight up, they will lose by 30 points for the second week in a row.

On defense, it is time face the reality about the Jets linebackers. They have one very good inside linebacker who is having a poor year in David Harris and not much else. Bryan Thomas and Garrett McIntyre can’t play major reps on a good NFL defense. Calvin Pace and Bart Scott are slow, 2 down linebackers who are average players at best. The less linebackers on the field for the Jets, the better. We discussed in the off-season how the Jets are better built for a 4-3 or 46 and it is time for Rex to stop trying to fit square pegs in round holes in the 3-4.

Get Quinton Coples in the starting line-up and start showing more 4-3 looks. Accept the reality that Siona Pouha is hurt and give him time to heal while getting Kenrick Ellis more reps. At linebacker, more reps need to be given to Demario Davis immediately. Let him make his mistakes now and grow into the position he will hopefully be holding the next few years for the Jets. They need his speed out there. Put Aaron Maybin on the inactive list until he learns a second pass rush move and give Ricky Sapp a chance to rush the passer on third downs. In the secondary, hopefully Aaron Berry gets up to speed quickly. From a talent perspective, he could very well be starting over Kyle “I taunt the receiver when I’m beat by 10 yards” Wilson in a couple of weeks. Beyond that, you hope Antonio Cromartie and LaRon Landry continue their elevated level of play.

On offense, the solutions are going to be much harder to come by. Mark Sanchez was abysmal yesterday and the lack of supporting cast isn’t going to help him out of his slump. Tim Tebow is not the answer as a full time quarterback. He can be the answer as a shot in the arm to the offense if he is used properly, which Tony Sparano has shown no concept of doing. No more reps at H-Back. No more reps in the slot. No more reps at fullback. Get Tebow in the shotgun with Joe McKnight and Jeremy Kerley next to him and let him run option and take off up the middle on short yardage situations. Give him 10-12 carries a game. Treat him like a running back who is taking direct snaps and then pop in a deep pass on occasion to keep defenses honest.

The Jets are so bad at running back, that it wouldn’t be irrational to give recently signed Jonathan Grimes and roster ping pong ball Joe McKnight extended work. How could they be less productive than Shonn Greene? Go with a committee approach that hopefully pops a few big plays with the two of them and Bilal Powell. I mentioned Kerley in the Wildcat because he is type of player who should be getting 8-12 touches a game, especially in an offense as devoid of talent as the Jets. Use him how Green Bay uses Randall Cobb. Give him handoffs, pitches, quick screens…get the ball in his hands.

Mark Sanchez is so inconsistent that he may not be salvageable at this point. He needs to be given quick reads where he can get the ball out of his hands without too many progressions. Hopefully an improved, creative run game will open up some type of play action for him down the field. At wide receiver and tight end, you can only hope Stephen Hill and Dustin Keller get healthy and Chaz Schilens can be relied upon.

The Jets need a roster overhaul but they have 12 games left. In order to make those 12 games competitive, it is going to take creativity on both sides of the ball and a shake up of the depth chart. Hopefully Rex Ryan and his staff are smart enough to realize that.

Sanchez Breakdown: Jumping Ship?

Rob Celletti breaks down Mark Sanchez’s performance on Sunday…you could imagine how this went

Stat line: 13/29, 109 Yards, 1 interception – 39.9 QB rating, 44.8 completion percentage

Season stats: 63/128, 813 Yards, 5 touchdowns, 4 interceptions – 69.6 QB rating, 49.2 completion percentage

Last week, I joked that I wouldn’t abandon the format of this particular article.  Well today, I’m not in a joking mood.  To try and pin down individual moments in this game would be skirting a more pressing issue: the fact that Mark Sanchez might be less than a month away from his last action as a New York Jet.  Seriously. It’s time for a good, old-fashioned rant. So as The Joker once said: here…we…go!

Let’s get some things out of the way in as few words as possible. Mark Sanchez had a snowball’s chance in hell at succeeding this year. Everything the Jets did in the wake of last season’s meltdown set this quarterback up to fail. The contract extension rang hollow, because days earlier, the Jets got very publicly into the Peyton Manning sweepstakes. Then they traded for Tim Tebow.  Then, as we tore days off the calendar in March, and April, and May and June, we wondered, will the Jets address their needs? Are they really going into this season with one proven NFL weapon in Santonio Holmes? What about depth at running back and tight end? Was Wayne Hunter actually going to see another snap on Sanchez’s offensive line? Mike Tannenbaum’s negligence on the offensive side of the ball is a fireable offense.

All of that said, Mark Sanchez has been 50 shades of awful. In the modern NFL,  completing less than 50% of your passes one time is bad enough. To do it three weeks in a row is unconscionable. It was both laughable and painful watching other teams around the league executing in the passing game with such ease. The 49ers are talented defensively, but as our own Chris Gross Tweeted last night, it would be nice to root for a quarterback that fans don’t need to make excuses for every week. Brandon Weeden kept the Browns competitive, on the road, against a good defense on Thursday night. Ask yourself: could Mark Sanchez have done the same?

The Jets have absolutely no rhythm or tempo on offense.  Sanchez’s fundamentals have gone into the toilet; everything that looked picture perfect about his play in week 1 has all but evaporated. He was intercepted on a screen pass. When receivers got open (a rarity), he missed them, and not just by inches, but yards. The sack-fumble at the end of the first half is the kind of mistake that happens to a first or second year quarterback. Unfortunately, Sanchez is in his fourth season.

And really, that was the moment that changed things for me.  Look back through my archives on this website. I have defended Mark Sanchez endlessly; his triumphs were always vindicating, his failures always a result of his inexperience, or a lack of execution by his teammates. In the end, what separates truly good players from the below-average ones, at any position in any sport, is consistency. I’ve made the case that I never believed in Shonn Greene because if you look through his game logs, he has almost never played two good games in a row in his career. If you apply that logic to Mark Sanchez, you can draw the same conclusions.  The flashes of brilliance have too often been evened out, and now weighed down, by performances like Sunday’s.

Make no mistake, I am not calling for Tim Tebow (he should be released or traded immediately).  After all, the quarterback of a modern NFL team needs to be able to throw the ball consistently. He needs to be able to make his teammates better. He needs to show command of an offense. I refuse to comment on Sanchez’s demeanor; in-game, post-game, whatever. I have no idea what the man is thinking or feeling. But what he showed on Sunday was that he is simply not improving as an NFL quarterback, and that he may even be regressing. What’s my conclusion?  That the answer to the Jets’ problems at the sport’s most important position may not be on the current roster. I hope I’m proven wrong in the coming weeks, but after yesterday…

I’m officially out of excuses.

Initial Reaction – As Bad As It Gets, Awful Jets Fall To 2-2

The New York Jets embarrassed themselves in a 34-0 loss

The New York Jets put on a sorry display today at MetLife Stadium, in what was arguably the low point of Rex Ryan’s tenure as head coach. You can make a very real argument that the Jets are one of the five worst teams in the NFL right now. Not only do they lack talent across the board on both sides of the ball, they seem to have no type of coherent plan on how to best maximize what talent they do have. They were beat down by a far superior team today, who played far from their best game and actually left the door open for the Jets to remain competitive into the 3rd quarter.

Mark Sanchez was brutal, completing less than 50% of his passes for the third straight week. In today’s NFL that stat throws serious questions on whether he can be a successful quarterback for this team anymore. What also throws that into question was his demeanor in his post-game press conference, where he carried a care free attitude about his turnovers and general play. How can he still remain this careless with the football? He threw another interception at the line of scrimmage and was stripped from behind as he showed no ball security awareness.

The whole attitude of the team was generally infuriating to watch. You have Kyle Wilson repeatedly getting beat deep and then taunting the opposing receiver when he is overthrown by Alex Smith. He is a first round pick who has no concept of how to play the football in the air and should be no higher than a 4th cornerback on a quality NFL defense. Calvin Pace and Bryan Thomas, despite their sacks today are past their primes as capable NFL starting linebackers. David Harris, despite being the league’s highest paid linebacker could potentially lead the league in missed tackles thus far this season.

You are basically looking at a slow front seven, a shorthanded secondary and an offense that is comically understaffed. There is no team with a worse collection of skill position players in the NFL than the Jets right now. Santonio Holmes is getting a MRI tomorrow for a foot injury he sustained today and is going to miss time. Jeff Cumberland? Clyde Gates? Patrick Turner? Shonn Greene had another inspiring 11 carry, 34 yard performance. Tim Tebow brought nothing to the table. How is this team supposed to score points?

The Jets have 8 days to get their act together in some type of away before hosting Houston, the league’s best all around team in primetime. That game has the potential to be every bit as ugly as today was…except in front of the whole country. The Jets have problems that start with owner, carry down to the GM, to the quarterback and all the way through to the bottom of their roster. Will they fight or will they just say “too bad” like Sanchez did in his press conference?

Turn On The Jets Roundtable Week 4 – Jets/49ers Predictions

The Turn On The Jets staff gives their predictions for the New York Jets week 4 match-up against the San Francisco 49ers. Make sure to give everybody a follow on Twitter!

Joe Caporoso12 Pack

Chris GrossJets 16, 49ers 9. While this will surely be one of the most difficult tasks the New York Jets have faced in recent memory, last week proved just how difficult it is to win on the road in the NFL. San Francisco looked unbeatable until they were upset in Minnesota by the Christian Ponder led Vikings last week. Conversely, the Jets went into Miami as favorites, where the ended up squeaking out an overtime victory against a Dolphins team that lost its best offensive player prior to halftime. While New York has struggled mightily to defend the run this season, Frank Gore is the type of back that this defense is built to stop. Unlike CJ Spiller and Reggie Bush, Gore is much more of a power back, rather than a speedster, which should make him relatively easy to defend for New York’s sluggish linebacker corps. Alex Smith has been extremely efficient, and the loss of Darrelle Revis will certainly hurt the Jets ability to defend the pass, however, I think Rex Ryan and Mike Pettine get more creative with their blitz packages and pressure schemes than we have ever seen before. After all, without the security blanket of Revis in the secondary, they have no choice. New York is in a kill or be killed situation when it comes to defending the pass from here on out.

Offensively, the Jets will certainly struggle in the early portion of the game. Shonn Greene will get the start at running back, but after about 8-10 carries of 3 yards or less, Tony Sparano will begin to get creative with his personnel. Expect to see more of Bilal Powell, who still may not turn heads on the stat sheet against this Patrick Willis led defense, but will certainly be more effective than Greene. Tim Tebow should get ample playing time as a ball carrier as well, and the deciding score in this game could come as a result of some trickery out of the wild cat.

New York is also hopeful that Dustin Keller will return this week, which would be a huge upgrade at Tight End, and would help Quarterback Mark Sanchez tremendously. Over the first three games, Sanchez has targeted Jeff Cumberland and Konrad Reuland a combined 15 times. Together, the tight ends have hauled in only 6 balls. Keller will provide Sanchez with some nice insurance, and will help this offense move the sticks on third down. Don’t expect either team to light up the scoreboard, but in the end, the Jets do enough to steal one from San Francisco in what turns out to be one of the most physical matchups of the 2012 season.

Mike Donnelly – The way everyone is talking about this game, you’d think the Jets shouldn’t even bother to show up. Apparently the 49ers are some kind of unbeatable powerhouse, while the first place Jets are a complete and utter joke who have no chance to win any more games this year with Darrelle Revis out. Well, I don’t quite see it that way. Nobody believes in the Jets at all and that’s when they play their best. I think the offense is going to come out throwing the ball and we are gonna see our first glimpses of an opened up Tebow package. On defense, Rex Ryan is going to show that all his talk about being the best defensive coach in the league was more than just talk, and Quinton Coples is going to make his presence felt. Plus Evan Silva called for a 20-6 49ers win and virtually everyone else in the world thinks this is a lock for the 49ers as well. Nope. Jets win, 23-20 in a nail-biter.

Chris Celletti – There are two football teams everybody is absolutely head over heels for this season, and they happen to be the Jets’ next two opponents; the 49ers and the Texans. Listen to any sports talk radio, read the papers and blogs or just talk to football fans, everybody wants to tell you how incredible both of these teams are. I think they’re both good. I don’t think either of them are unbeatable – how’s this…the 49ers lost last week to Christian Ponder and the Minnesota Vikings. Now, I do think the 49ers present a bad matchup for the Jets. The Jets are really going to struggle to score points. They’ll try to pound the ball with should-be-benched Shonn Greene, and to no ones surprise they’ll struggle there. I think Mark Sanchez could have some success throwing short to Dustin Keller  but overall the Jets passing game is going to have a tough time out there and likely won’t hit any big plays. The bigger ifs for me come on the defensive side of the ball. Can the Jets not get run over by Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter? I still think the Jets are much more equipped to handle a north-south running attack like the Niners, so I don’t think that matchup will be as in favor of Frisco than most people think. If the Jets secondary can hold up its end of the bargain (a big, big if), I think this is game that comes down to the wire. At the end, the Nines are just too good, too tough, too well coached, too amazing….oh, screw it. Jets 21, Niners 20.

Rob Celletti – Darrelle Revis’ injury diagnosis on Monday reminded me of a similar moment in recent Jets’ history.  Two seasons ago, a few days before the 9-2 Jets traveled to New England to take on the 9-2 Patriots in what was supposed to be the Monday Night Football game of the year, the Jets lost Jim Leonhard to a broken leg suffered in practice.  The demeanor of the Jets the rest of the week told you that they simply had no chance of going into Gillette Stadium and winning that game.  While the circumstances this week are quite different, the demeanor of the Jets has been similar.  Rex Ryan delivered the news that Revis would be out for the year grimly.  Joe McKnight was moved to cornerback in a move that smacks of desperation from a team that seems to be losing its way (remember, the Jets are $8 million UNDER the salary cap; Mike Tannenbaum, somehow, still has a job), or never had a plan to begin with.

So should Jets fans be at all confident this Sunday?  No, probably not.  But this is the NFL, where every year it seems that games might as well be decided with a coin flip.  I’ve said to people, half-jokingly, that I will witness a season, before I leave this earth, where every single one of the 32 teams finishes 8-8, and playoff berths will be decided by tiebreakers, and yes, coin flips.  The parity (or is it mediocrity) is astounding.  The 49ers are an excellent team, and they’re coming in angry.  But the Jets are at home and they’re getting Dustin Keller back.  The run defense has something to prove.  I’ve essentially picked every single Jets game to be, in a word, ugly this year, so why stop now?  A tightly contested defensive battle leaves the Jets just short, as they fall 20-14.

Turn On The Jets 12 Pack, Week 4 – Jets vs. 49ers

12 predictions for the New York Jets week 4 match-up against the San Francisco 49ers

12 Predictions for Jets/49ers. A big thanks to Chris Gross for taking over as Editor-In-Chief while I am in Montreal on a business trip (Bachelor Party) until Sunday morning (of course taking the early flight back so I won’t miss the game). On to the predictions –

1. Bilal Powell will be the Jets leading rusher for the second week in a row, moving one step closer to taking over the starting job. He will also again average more yards per carry than Shonn Greene.

2. Santonio Holmes will be productive for the second week in a row, finishing with 5 catches for 85 yards.

3. Aaron Maybin will not have a sack or a quarterback hit for the fourth straight week, leading to most of his reps being cut in the coming weeks and a potential promotion of Ricky Sapp from the practice squad.

4. Quinton Coples will see his most extensive work of the season with Marcus Dixon no longer on the roster.

5. Newly signed running back Jonathan Grimes will receive at least one touch on offense this week.

6. Mario Manningham is going to have a big game in the slot for San Francisco, as their passing game will target and pick on Ellis Lankster.

7. Vernon Davis wil finish with at least 55 yards receiving and a touchdown.

8. Frank Gore will be the game’s leading rusher, finishing with just over 90 yards.

9. Mark Sanchez will have one interception but will also throw for over 250 yards and a touchdown.

10. Tim Tebow won’t be a major factor in the game.

11. Chaz Schilens will play well opposite Santonio Holmes, making a case to split reps with Stephen Hill when he comes back from injury.

12. The Jets will be more competitive than most will pick them to be, however won’t have enough late against the 49ers and lose 23-13 in game that is closer than the score indicates.

Turn On The Jets Week 4 Fantasy Football Preview

It has only been three weeks of fantasy football so far, and I totally understand your natural reactions to your team’s start. If you’re 3-0, you think the good times will never end, while if you’re 0-3, you’re cursing Evan Silva and the other “experts” who insisted you draft guys like Ryan Mathews and Cam Newton with top 5 picks. I get that, it’s perfectly natural to feel like that. But no matter what has happened so far, and no matter how well you drafted, you’re going to need to add some pieces off the waiver wire. The key to keeping your 3-0 team on top is going to be building solid depth for bye weeks and protect yourself against an injury. If your team looks poor now, all it takes is one big time waiver wire pick up and you’ll be right back in it.

Every year, starting players get injured and the backup steps in to take the league by storm. Some of these players single-handedly win fantasy leagues for people. Already this year we have seen a few players seemingly come out of nowhere to have monster games and are now mainstays on teams. Take a look around your fantasy league and you’ll see guys like Mikel Leshoure, CJ Spiller, Andre Brown, Christian Ponder, and Dennis Pitta already littering rosters and contributing in a big way. The key for your team going forward is to identify possible break-out candidates that are almost always running backs, stash them on your bench, and then keep your fingers crossed. Let’s identify some of these potential break through guys.

RB Jacquizz Rodgers – Readers of this column will know that I have been beating the Jacquizz drum since before the season. I think Michael Turner is absolutely useless, and you can see that the Falcons coaching staff is close to fully agreeing with me. Last week Jacquizz recorded 10 carries, 5 catches, 67 total yards, and a touchdown. In PPR leagues, he should already be on a roster in your league, but if he’s still there no matter what kind of league you are in, stop reading this now and pick him up.

RB Bilal Powell – Shonn Greene’s struggles this season have been well documented amongst Jets fans, and after last week’s game in Miami it appears as though the team is starting to lean more towards a running back by committee approach with Bilal Powell getting more and more touches. He was already the full-time 3rd down back and the preferred passing target out of the backfield, but now it seems as though he’s going to get a steady 10 carries or so a week with a chance for that number to greatly increase.

RB Kendall Hunter – The 49ers are going to remain a predominantly running team as long as Alex Smith is the quarterback, and I don’t think you can rely on starter Frank Gore all season long. The guy has a history of nagging injuries, and now that he’s getting older the team may err on the side of caution and start working Hunter in more and more, perhaps even getting a few starts.

RB Robert Turbin – The Seahawks loved the bruising RB in the preseason, and he’s the clear backup to Marshawn Lynch, who has been playing through a lingering back problem. Should Lynch break down from the 30 touches a week the Seahawks are forcing on him, Turbin would be in line for 20 or so touches a week, which makes him a real candidate to be a breakout star.

RB Lamar Miller – Jets fans everywhere are now rooting for Reggie Bush to get injured after his Darrelle Revis comments, and judging by the disgraced former Heisman winner’s history, it’s only a matter of time until he does indeed get injured. When he does, rookie Lamar Miller looks poised to take over rather than the terrible Daniel Thomas. If and when that happens, Miller could become a stud, even on a crappy Dolphins team.

RB Ronnie Hillman – Willis McGahee is a prime candidate for “starting RB who gets injured” status, and I believe rookie Ronnie Hillman will be the man to step in and get the bulk of the carries rather than Knowshon Moreno (who the coaches clearly hate), or Lance Ball (who isn’t that good).

RB Mike Goodson – If you own Darren McFadden and don’t have Mike Goodson on your bench to protect yourself, you need your head examined. If, or WHEN, McFadden suffers his yearly injury, Goodson should be in line for 15+ touches and some solid production.

WR Jeremy Kerley – Just a hunch…

WR Jerome Simpson – The Vikings are supposedly in love with Simpson and can’t wait to get him out on the field starting in week 4. He’s gotten a lot of buzz, but it’s guys like this who could end up turning your middle of the pack fantasy team into a legit contender.

WEEK 4 ONE-LINERS

“Get em in there!”

QB Christian Ponder @ Det – Few QB’s are playing better than Ponder, while few pass defenses are playing as poorly as Detroit.

QB Andy Dalton @ Jax – The Jags pass D is anemic, and AJ Green is dominating defenses.

RB Mikel Leshoure vs. Minn – The Vikings no longer have the dominant run defense they once did, and Leshoure is clearly the Lions bellcow, especially with Stafford hurting.

RB Ryan Williams vs. Mia – Yes, the Dolphins have a stout run defense, but Williams is a very talented runner and he no longer has to split reps with the useless Beanie Wells.

RB Jacquizz Rodgers vs. Car – The Panthers defense stinks, but the game could turn into a shootout where Rodgers gets lots of targets from Matt Ryan.

WR Jordy Nelson vs. NO – As a disgruntled Nelson owner, I feel your pain. But make sure you keep him active in week 4 as he catches up on 3 weeks worth of stats against that garbage Saints defense.

WR Lance Moore @ GB – I’d normally never recommend starting Moore outdoors, but this game is going to likely be a shootout, and someone has to rack up the yards.

WR Kenny Britt @ Hou – The Texans have a tough run defense, and this could be Britt’s 2012 coming out party.

WR Brandon Marshall @ Dall – I’ve seen him ranked in the late 20’s on plenty of ranking lists this week. I don’t get it at all, he’s a #1 receiver still.

TE Dennis Pitta vs. Cle – His season has not been a fluke. He’s the most targeted TE in football.

TE Martellus Bennett @ Phi – The Eagles linebackers still stink.

“Not this week”

QB Matt Stafford vs. Minn – Reports say he’s going to play. Unfortunately those reports don’t say he might just end up leaving the game after a few series.

QB Michael Vick vs. NYG – There’s a really great chance he doesn’t finish this game.

RB Frank Gore @ NYJ – I think the Jets D steps it up big time this week.

RB Ahmad Bradshaw @ Phi – Just don’t trust him to take back the job from Andre Brown quite yet.

RB Benjarvus Green-Ellis @ Jax – I’d still start him if you got him, but I wouldn’t expect the kind of production many are calling for this week.

WR Hakeem Nicks @ Phi – The Eagles are going to stick Asomugha on him and do everything they can to slow him down.

WR Marques Colston @ GB – I don’t expect Colston to rack up big numbers this week, despite the game likely turning into a shootout.

WR Dez Bryant vs Chi – The Bears cover 2 defense limits the big plays, and that takes away from Bryant’s output this week.

TOJ Staff Thursday Night Football “Race For The Steak” Picks:

Joe Caporoso – Baltimore (-12)

Chris Gross – Cleveland (+12)

Mike Donnelly – Cleveland (+12)

Chris Celletti – Cleveland (+12)

Rob Celletti – Cleveland (+12)

Turn On The Jets Week 4 Roundtable – Jets/49ers Match-Ups

The Turn On The Jets staff discusses what match-up they are most looking forward to on Sunday

The Turn On The Jets staff discusses what match-up they are most looking forward when the New York Jets take on the San Francisco 49ers. Make sure to give everybody a follow on Twitter –

Joe Caporoso – Tony Sparano vs. the 49ers defense. Let’s see how crafty the new Jets offensive coordinator is against arguably the league’s best defense. Let’s hope he is smart enough not to line up with three tight ends and try to pound the ball with Shonn Greene. A smarter approach would be to spread the 49ers out with a 3 wide look and look to get the ball in the hands of the Jets speedy players, namely Jeremy Kerley and Bilal Powell. The Jets pass protection has been better than expected and as crazy as this may sound, this might be a game for Mark Sanchez to let it fly 30-35 times and attack aggressively down the field.

Chris Gross – Jets Rushing Offense vs. 49ers Run Defense – We all know who has the advantage here. San Francisco has one of the most, if not the most, stellar run defenses in the NFL. The Jets, on the other hand, have been extremely sub par in their rushing offense. Shonn Greene is averaging an embarrassing 2.8 YPC through the first three games this season. It is about time that Tony Sparano, known famously for his ground and pound approach, becomes creative in his game plan. If he is smart, he will attempt to spread San Francisco out, and use his more elusive backs like Bilal Powell, and the newly acquired Jonathan Grimes, early and often. Sparano should attempt to get them the ball in space and allow them an opportunity to make plays. If he attempts to line up in Jumbo sets and run Greene on dives, the offensive will undoubtedly be stonewalled by the likes of Patrick WIllis and Co. Sparano needs to save Greene as his downhill runner for late in the fourth quarter, where he can take advantage of a defense tired from chasing down the shiftier backs all game. The run game can either be decent Sunday, or a complete disaster. How Sparano designs his game plan both schematically and personnel wise, will be what determines the winner of this match up

Mike Donnelly – The matchup I’m most looking forward to seeing this weekend is how the Jets defensive front handles the 49ers power run game. The 49ers offense thrives on not making mistakes and beating themselves, so it’s of the utmost importance to stuff the run and get them into 3rd and long situations. Alex Smith does a lot of 3 step drops followed by short, safe passes, so I expect to see another week of no QB pressure, unfortunately. But, if the defensive line is able to hold up and not let the 49ers huge offensive line beat them up, the Jets have a chance to hang in there and win this game late.

Chris Celletti – Matchup – Jets D backs vs. Alex Smith/49ers WRs and TEs. If the Jets want to swiftly quell the doomsday attitude that’s surfaced since Darrelle Revis was ruled out for the season, their defensive backs are going to have to step up this week against the 49ers. Alex Smith is a great game manager. He’s not a great quarterback. I’m interested to see if the Jets’ secondary can keep tabs on Michael Crabtree, Mario Manningham and Vernon Davis and force Alex Smith into some tough throws. If Antonio Cromartie and Kyle Wilson consistently get beat and Smith has wide open receivers to throw to, it could be a really long day for the Jets.

TJ Rosenthal – The matchup we look forward to the most is Kyle Wilson vs any of the 49er receivers. Crabtree leads them with 19 receptions and Manningham has 12. Moss has 7 but who knows how Rex will play it. Ryan may put Cro on the taller guys and Wilson on Crabtree at times.. Whoever he lines up against, we are curious to see how the Jets ask him to defend. Will they allow him to break on balls, and jump routes? Wilson can be a guy who can take balls back to the house if plays are happening in front of him. We worry about balls behind him and him turning around in time, but that’s what we look forward to seeing. Has his time come? Or not?

Rob Celletti – This week, I’m really interested to see how the Jets’ now Revis-less secondary handles a 49ers passing attack that, while it’s certainly not seen as the strength of their team, could pose some problems. Alex Smith is essentially the NFL’s new Chad Pennington; dating back to the start of last season, he’s completed 63% of his passes (nearly 70% through three games this season) while throwing 22 touchdowns to just 6 interceptions. The Jets, frighteningly enough, had moments where they made Ryan Tannehill look like a veteran NFL quarterback last week, and if they afford Smith openings, he will exploit them.  an Antonio Cromartie shut down Michael Crabtree, who’s caught 12 of 19 balls for first downs this year?  Will the Jets, notorious for their inability to cover tight ends, finally figure it out against Vernon Davis, who already has 4 touchdowns this year?  If Randy Moss is on the field, will the Jets feel he’s enough of a threat to line Cromartie up against him, leaving Kyle Wilson on an island against Crabtree or Mario Manningham? The Jets need to get creative and LaRon Landry and Yeremiah Bell need to step up, or this 49ers passing attack could resemble the one that Joe Montana used to lead.

New York Jets Week 4 – Early Thoughts On Jets/49ers

Early thoughts on the New York Jets week 4 match-up against the San Francisco 49ers

A collection of thoughts on the New York Jets week 4 match-up against the San Francisco 49ers. Check back later today for Chris Gross’ defensive film breakdown and our roundtable discussion on the game –

1. Underdog. Underdog. Underdog. There won’t be a single person out there who picks the New York Jets to win this game and with good cause. San Francisco was the consensus best team in the league until they were smacked by a mediocre Minnesota Vikings team last week and the Jets have just lost their best player and are coming off a poor showing, despite winning. Fortunately, they play the games for a reason and nobody picked Minnesota to beat San Francisco last week either and we all saw how that went.

2. The Jets best opportunity to pull an upset is to get an early lead. San Francisco struggles to play from behind because they aren’t built to throw the ball down the field. The more that is put on Alex Smith, the better.

3. Vernon Davis has the potential to be an absolute nightmare for the Jets defense, who has still struggled to cover the tight end. This is a game for LaRon Landry to really show his value. Rex Ryan needs to scheme up both an adequate pass rush and a coverage answer for Davis, who is the 49ers best weapon in the pass game.

4. The Jets have two defensive touchdowns and a special teams touchdown so far this season. They are going to need one this week because points are going to be very hard to come by against a loaded 49ers defense.

5. The best approach on offense is going to be running a more spread attack than usual. This is the type of game to get into the 3 wide and have Bilal Powell take the bulk of reps at running back. The Jets are delusional if they think they are going to move the ball by coming out in their three tight end and look and handing dives to Shonn Greene.

6. In general the Jets need to be getting Jeremy Kerley more involved on offense. He needs more targets in the passing game and should be involved in the running game. Use him in the Wildcat, give him pitches and reverses. Kerley is one the team’s few playmakers and needs the ball in his hands.

7. The Jets should get Dustin Keller back and he is desperately needed. He will help prevent too much coverage from being rolled to Santonio Holmes. Look for Chaz Schilens to start in place of Stephen Hill, who should be out with a hamstring injury.

8. It is time for the Jets to mix up the looks in their front seven in hopes of generating more of a pass rush. More Quinton Coples. More Demario Davis. More speed. 3 sacks in 3 weeks isn’t enough.

Turn On The Jets Offensive Film Breakdown – Jets vs. Dolphins

Turn On The Jets offensive film breakdown from the Jets week 3 win against the Miami Dolphins

A collection of observations after watching the New York Jets offensive game film against the Miami Dolphins. We will focus on a handful of plays before breaking down key individual position group’s performance. Make sure to check back later in the day for Chris Gross defensive film breakdown –

Operation Clusterf*** – The second interception thrown on the day by Mark Sanchez which came in the end-zone during the third quarter was a complete disaster from start to finish, beginning with the play call and ending with a horrid throw. With the ball on the 7 yard line, Tony Sparano called for a smash/fan combination to the right side of the formation. Jeff Cumberland was lined up at split end and Stephen Hill was in the slot.

A smash/fan is one of the most basic route combinations in football and one of the easiest reads for a quarterback. Basically the outside receiver will run 5-7 yards and hitch back to the quarterback. The slot receiver runs a post-corner route. If the outside corner squats on the hitch route, the quarterback throws to the post corner, if the cornerback bails at all, the quarterback throws to the hitch route.

The problem with the play call on the 7 yard line is that it limits the space between the two routes, making it easier for the outside corner to play both routes at once. What is also a problem is that they had Cumberland, who isn’t accustomed to lining up at receiver, running the outside route. His inexperience would shine through on this play by pushing his route way too far into the end-zone. Basically he ran a 9 yard route instead of a 5-7 yard route, which made the outside corner’s job that much easier. In the slot, Stephen Hill rounded off his route and didn’t make a sharp plant and cut to shake his coverage. In a tight space, making a hard sell to the inside is that much more important. Hill could get away with routes like this at Georgia Tech but not in the NFL.

On to Sanchez, who showed no patience and put way too much air under his pass. Basically Sanchez pre-determined in the huddle he was throwing to Hill at the back pylon. He takes three steps and releases the ball immediately, despite having excellent protection. If he would have waited an extra half second, he would have seen how deep Cumberland pushed his route at which point he could have either threw it on a line to Hill instead of floating it or could have put more air under it and got the ball to the back pylon, where it would have been caught by Hill or went out of bounds. Finally, he also could have saw how poor the route combination broke and turned back side to a wide open Santonio Holmes, who probably catches the ball at the 2 yard line and walks into the end-zone.

Sanchez – Overall it wasn’t a pretty day for Sanchez. The positives? He showed good pocket presence, repeatedly stepping up and delivering the ball down the field. He heated up late in the game and showed terrific chemistry with Santonio Holmes…finally. What is so frustrating is that throughout this game Sanchez made every throw necessary in a NFL playbook. He hit the deep dig route, he hit the comeback route outside the numbers, he hit the deep ball in stride down the numbers. However, there is no consistency. He repeatedly missed open receivers down the field and showed a lack of patience. On his first interception of the game, he needs to recognize how poor of a route Clyde Gates ran and how Richard Marshall is ready to jump it. Beyond that, if he is going to throw it, it must be more up the field. He will make throws like this and then make textbook throws like he did on Jeremy Kerley’s 66 yard catch (we’ll get to that later). The inconsistency is incredibly frustrating.

The Wide Receivers – Santonio Holmes did a complete 180 from last week. He ran sharp, aggressive routes and did a good job working back to the football when it came to him. Richard Marshall was unable to handle Holmes from the opening snap. He has the skill set to beat up on weaker corners like him. Holmes also handled rolled coverage very well, showing patience and finding the necessary windows.

Stephen Hill was a disaster out there. He had his leg rolled up early in the game and wasn’t the same after. Hill ran tentative routes and was shoved all over the field by Sean Smith. In the end-zone, he dropped a perfectly thrown fade ball and also had a long pass down the middle of the field bounce off his hands. It is doubtful Hill will play this week because of a hamstring injury but when he returns, he should be splitting reps with Chaz Schilens. Seeing his most extended work of the season, Schilens put together an impressive game. He ran crisp routes and should have a 69 yard touchdown if Mark Sanchez didn’t throw overthrow him on a beautifully executed double move. Schilens carries himself like a confident NFL receiver. Hill gets his confidence shaken too easily.

Jeremy Kerley deserves more playing time. He continued to demonstrate his big play ability, most notably on his 66 yard catch and run which was a thing of beauty from start to finish. The play was designed to clear out the middle of the field for Kerley, who drove his route hard up the field, snapped it back and then broke to the outside on a perfectly thrown ball from Sanchez who threw it away from the corner breaking to Kerley’s inside shoulder.

Kerley then shook both the corner and safety and was off to the races. When you see plays like this, it makes the inconsistency of the Jets offense that much more frustrating. The other receiver to play major reps was Clyde Gates, who simply put doesn’t merit any playing time. He rounds off every route and has no answer for physical coverage.

Offensive Line/Tight Ends – The protection in the passing game was very impressive, particularly in the second half. Austin Howard has very quietly put together a strong start to the season. Sanchez had a well formed pocket to throw from during most of the game. The run blocking wasn’t awful but has room for improvement. There are too many instances when Matt Slauson or Brandon Moore are knocked off the ball, clogging up running lanes. There were enough lanes to average more than 2 yards per carry as Shonn Greene did but that doesn’t mean the offensive line can’t perform at a higher level.

The fact that Jeff Cumberland is starting games at tight end is an embarrassment and a direct reflection on the poor job Mike Tannenbaum did this off-season building depth. He can’t block. He shows a lack of understanding of the offense and runs generally poor routes. Konrad Reuland is a better all around player than him by a sizable margin. Reuland shows a willingness to block and clearly understands his assignment on every play.

Running Backs – I won’t beat a dead horse. When a play is blocked like this, it needs to be more than a 2 yard gain –