New York Jets Week 5 Report Card – Good Effort?

Turn On The Jets hands out grades for the Jets week 5 game against Houston

(Hey Shonn, how many carries is it really going to take you to crack 1,000 yards this year?…Maybe 500, coach…maybe 500). 

A quick report on the New York Jets performance last night. Check back tomorrow for our offensive and defensive film breakdown, along with a preliminary look at the week 6 match-up against the upstart Indianapolis Colts.

Quarterbacks (D+) Yes, Mark Sanchez’s supporting cast leaves something to be desired and yes they dropped passes on him. However, it is simply inexcusable to complete less than 50% of your passes this consistently. Tim Tebow isn’t the answer because he doesn’t make the throws down the field that Sanchez did last night. Sanchez gets another week as the starter, this time against a softer defense, he is in desperate need of a big performance.

Running Backs (F) The running game is abysmal at this point. Part of that is on the run blocking. Part of that is on the Jets backs being completely unable to make people miss. What purpose does it serve to keep giving Shonn Greene carries at this point? Just give them to Bilal Powell, Joe McKnight and recently signed Jonathan Grimes.

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends (C+) They made a few plays but also left too many on the field. Jeremy Kerley is a having a very good year and never deserves to be lumped in to negative statements about the Jets lack of talent at these positions. He is a legitimate playmaker who should be a huge part of the Jets offense in the coming years. Chaz Schilens is a capable possession receiver for the most part. Jeff Cumberland made a beautiful touchdown catch but still can’t block and had a killer drop late. Jason Hill also had a big drop.

Offensive Line (C) All things considered, the pass protection was not that awful. Obviously, they aren’t getting enough of a push in the running game. Credit Nick Mangold for gutting it out through an ankle injury. The Jets can’t afford to lose him.

Defensive Line (D) No sacks. No pressure. Not good enough in the running game. This unit is going to struggle in the coming weeks with Kenrick Ellis nursing a knee injury. Mike DeVito led the way with 8 tackles. Muhammad Wilkerson had a tackle for a loss. Through five games – zero sacks for Wilkerson or Quinton Coples.

Linebackers (D) No sacks. No pressure. Still too many missed tackles and missed assignments. Look for Demario Davis to start seeing more playing time because of Josh Mauga’s season ending injury. Mauga was taking a chunk of Bart Scott’s reps already. Through five games – zero sacks for Aaron Maybin.

Secondary (A) Antonio Cromartie played arguably his most impressive game as a Jet, shutting down Andre Johnson and pulling in an interception. He has elevated his play since Darrelle Revis went down with injury and proven himself to be a true number one cornerback. The rest of the secondary held their own…yes even including Kyle Wilson.

Special Teams (A) Joe McKnight had a momentum swinging 100 yard kickoff return for a touchdown that was beautifully blocked up. They executed a fake punt for a first down and perfectly executed a surprise onside kick but the ball went through Chaz Schilens hands. The Jets must continue to steal points and yards through their special teams.

Coaching (C) Rex Ryan had his team properly motivated and made excellent adjustments at halftime to slow down the Texans offense. Unfortunately that doesn’t erase how they were gashed in the first half. Tony Sparano’s playcalling also needs to come under question. He had a few truly awful ones down the stretch.

Turn On The Jets Roundtable Week 5 – Jets/Texans Predictions

The TOJ staff gives their predictions for Jets/Texans tonight

Joe Caporoso – 12 Pack

Chris Gross – Texans 27, Jets 20 – Rex Ryan and his coaching staff will have this team ready to come out swinging after last week’s debacle. Every news outlet and their brothers are already writing the 2-2, 1st place Jets off, as good as dead. However, the Rex-led Jets have historically played their best football with their backs against the wall. in 2010, they didn’t have a snow ball’s chance in hell to go into New England in the post season and beat Tom Brady and the Patriots at home, particularly after the 45-3 blowout New York suffered to New England in their previous meeting.

Tonight, the Jets face a 4-0 Houston team in a similar predicament. The difference this time is that the defense is not nearly as good, and the talent on offense has dropped off tremendously. The Jets will come out and play desperate, throwing everything including the kitchen sink at Houston in all three phases of the game. However, unlike in 2010, this unit does not posses the talent to couple with the sense of desperation needed for an upset. New York keeps it closer than everyone is predicting, but in the end, they will prove unable to stop the vast amount of playmakers Houston has all over the board.

Mike Donnelly – I know what everyone is thinking — this game is going to be an absolute disaster. The Jets won’t be able to move the ball, won’t stop Arian Foster, won’t get anywhere near Matt Schaub, etc, etc etc. I know that’s the perception, but I don’t think it’s going to be the reality. This team right now is like a wounded dog that’s cornered, and I expect them to come out swinging. Don’t think for a second Rex Ryan hasn’t reminded his defense every day about Carlos Rogers saying they quit last week. They’re going to play really well and keep the team in the game tonight. On offense, it’s Tebow time and we are gonna see a much bigger dose of him to make up for the fact Mark Sanchez is throwing passes to low-level high school calibre players like Jeff Cumberlamd in the base offense. I don’t think the Jets are going to win, but I expect them to show some pride and keep it close all the way before ultimately falling short, 24-20.

Chris Celletti – When I was picking this week’s games for our Race For The Steak, I picked the Jets +8.5. I’m not really sure why the hell I did that, so here comes a total hedge. I don’t see the Jets being very much competitive on Monday night. The Texans will run the ball right down the Jets’ throat, controlling the clock and field position. The few times the Jets offense does have the ball, I don’t expect it to be pretty. The roster the Jets are throwing out there, offensively, on Monday night is one of the worst collection of skill position players the franchise has ever assembled. This Jets’ offense is worse than the ones they had under Rich Kotite. How are they supposed to score any points? Maybe the Jets score in garbage time or on special teams. Other than that, I see almost no hope. Texans 24, Jets 7

Rob Celletti -Honestly, I’m tired of hearing how bad the Jets are.  I’m tired of reading it, hearing it, seeing it, writing about it.  They’re injured, they lack depth, there are questions about the general manager, coach and quarterback; these are all valid points.  But analysis of the NFL is often driven by hyperbolic narratives that change week to week: one win, and everyone thinks you’re a contender; one loss, you’re in serious trouble.  The Jets are 2-2, it’s October 8th.  There are still 12 football games to be played.

Why am I so positive?  Because I think somehow, the Jets show up tonight and compete.  Offensively, yes, the Jets are challenged, but the defense is due for at least a representative performance. I think they keep the Jets in this game.  I also think Joe McKnight and Jeremy Kerley will make their presence felt on special teams. As I wrote last week, these are major factors in the recipe for an upset.  On offense, it’s anyone’s guess. I wish I could tell you that Mark Sanchez will find a way to put 14 points on the board, aided by a heavy dose of Tim Tebow. If the Jets offense can manage two touchdowns, I think they have a decent shot at winning this game.
Unfortunately, I don’t think they can.  Texans 16, Jets 10.

Turn On The Jets Week 5 NFL Picks

The Turn On The Jets staff gives their week 5 NFL Picks

The Race for Steak continues. Note that last week’s record includes the most recent Thursday Night game –

CURRENT STANDINGS

1. Mike Donnelly (36-26-2)

2. Rob  Celletti (28-32-4)

3. Chris Celletti (25-36-3)

4. Chris Gross (25-36-3)

5. Joe Caporoso (24-37-3)

Joe Caporoso

Last Week (6-8-1)

  • Falcons (-3) vs. Redskins
  • Steelers (-3) vs. Eagles
  • Packers (-7) vs. Colts
  • Browns (+8) vs. Giants
  • Vikings (-5.5) vs Titans
  • Bengals (-3) vs. Dolphins
  • Ravens (-6) vs. Chiefs
  • Seahawks (+3) vs. Panthers
  • Bears (-4.5) vs. Jags
  • Patriots (-6.5) vs. Broncos
  • 49ers (-9.5) vs. Bills
  • Saints (-3.5) vs Chargers
  • Texans (-8.5) vs. Jets

Mike Donnelly

Last Week (8-7)

  • Was +3 vs Atl
  • Pit -3 vs Phi
  • Ind +7 vs GB
  • Cle +8.5 @ NYG
  • Ten +5.5 @ Minn
  • Cin -3 vs Mia
  • KC +6 vs Balt
  • Car -3 vs Sea
  • Jax +4.5 vs Chi
  • NE -6.5 vs Den
  • SF -9.5 vs Buff
  • NO -3.5 vs SD
  • NYJ +8.5 vs Hou

Rob Celletti

Last Week (9-5-1)

  • Falcons (-3) over Redskins
  • Steelers (-3) over Eagles
  • Colts (+7) over Packers
  • Giants (-8.5) over Browns
  • Vikings (-5.5) over Titans
  • Bengals (-3) over Dolphins
  • Ravens (-6) over Chiefs
  • Seahawks (+3) over Panthers
  • Bears (-4.5) over Jaguars
  • Broncos (+6.5) over Patriots
  • Bills (+9.5) over 49ers
  • Saints (-3.5) over Chargers
  • Jets (+8.5) over Texans

Chris Celletti

Last Week (5-9-1)

  • Falcons
  • Steelers
  • Packers
  • Giants
  • Titans
  • Bengals
  • Chiefs
  • Panthers
  • Bears
  • Pats
  • Bills
  • Saints
  • Jets

Chris Gross

Last Week (6-8-1)

  • Falcons (-3)
  • Eagles (+3)
  • Colts (+7)
  • Giants (-8)
  • Vikings (-5.5)
  • Dolphins (+3)
  • Ravens (-6.5)
  • Panthers (-3)
  • Bears (-5.5)
  • Broncos (+6.5)
  • 49ers (-9.5)
  • Saints (-3.5)
  • Jets (+8.5)

Turn On The Jets – NFL Week 5 Best Bets

Chris Celletti with his Best Bets for week 5 of the NFL Season

Eat. Drink. Football. Gamble. America. Make sure to check out our deal this weekend courtesy of Night Out. $20 for 20 wings and 2 pitchers of beer.

Week 4 Record 1-2

Season Record: 4-7-1

Damn you Larry Tynes! Once again, never bet on your crosstown rival. It just never works.

So I watched the Presidential Debate on Thursday night. It was horrible television, as most debates are. Everybody was ripping moderator Jim Lehrer for not taking control, but why even have a moderator on these things? Neither candidate follows the format whatsoever. This is how a presidential debate generally goes:

Candidate 1: “…And that’s how I plan on putting Americans back to work!”

Moderator: “Candidate 2, can you directly respond to Candidate 1’s plan to add jobs to the economy?”

Candidate 2: “Well, one thing I agree on with my opponent is that our military must remain the strongest in the world.”

These guys aren’t debating crap. They’re simply spewing pre-canned responses of their positions regardless of what the other says or what they were actually asked by the useless moderator. Unless you’re Mitt Romney, who essentially lied for 90 minutes and was deemed the run away winner. Only in American politics.

But the real reason I bring this up was that I saw a freakish parallel between the Presidential race – specifically the debate and the reaction to it – and the NFL. After the debate, it was widely opined that Romney had won. This was a shock to most people. Most expected President Obama to whitewash Romney. After the debate, there was incredible overreaction on both sides…just like we see each and every week in the NFL. It was like if the Colts beat the Packers this week. Massive underdogs, the Colts would be riding an incredible wave of high after beating an incumbent great NFL team. And good for them if they do, they should feel great about themselves. But you know if that happens, you’ll see Peter King dedicate four pages of his column on how sneaky-good the Colts are, how Andrew Luck is already a top-10 quarterback in the NFL and headed for Canton and how brilliantly the Colts are run from an organizational standpoint. And then you’ll flip on ESPN and Mark Schlereth will be babbling inanities like “The Packers are in trouble,” or “I’m seeing a shift in Aaron Rodgers that tells me he just isn’t the same guy he once was.”

Last night after the debate, Chris Matthews on MSNBC had me thinking I was watching Jets’ Post Game Live on SNY. He was totally distraught, yelling into the camera things like “What was he (Obama) doing out there!? Who was that guy!?” You can pretty much tune into SNY after every Jet game and get the same thing from Ray Lucas talking about Mark Sanchez. And of course Romney supporters are already pouring their scotch in anticipation of a November MittFest. It was just one good night for Romney, one bad one for Obama, and there’s so much that can and will happen in the time being. But you know, we can’t be rational about things like politics and sports.

Point of this all is, can we somehow find a way to have Mike Francesa moderate the next debate? Please?

Anyway, I’m supposed to make some picks or something in this column, so here we go:

Green Bay -7 at Colts

Ha! See what I did there? But no, really. Pack are due for a big win.

Bills +9.5 at 49ers

I in no way think the Bills are heading to the west coast and beating the Niners, but I think they’ll put up a much better fight than the Jets or Obama did (back to the politics for a second: who coached Obama before that debate, Brian Schottenheimer? “Hey Barry, here’s what you DON’T do: mention that 47% thing. Way too risky. Run the ball.”) Even if it’s a 14 point game late, I could see a late touchdown and a backdoor cover for the Bills.

Saints -4 vs. Chargers

It’s gonna be a silly high scoring game, but I think it’s about time the Saints won a darn football game. Back home at the dome, I think they’ll finally get on the board, and by a touchdown at least.

Bonus Non-Football Bet of the Week (Season Record 3-1)

We’re two for our last two in the English Premier League, so why mess with a broken thing? Let’s make it tiny bit harder and go with a little two-game parlay, Fulham (+165) over Southampton and Everton (+100) over Wigan.

New York Jets: Sanchez’s Last Stand

Mark Sanchez is running out of opportunities as the New York Jets starting quarterback

I wonder if Mark Sanchez longingly studies the depth chart of the quarterbacks drafted in the same year as him or the years right around him. Does he complain to Eva Longoria about Joe Flacco handing the football to Ray Rice and throwing the ball as far as he can to Torrey Smith while Anquan Boldin cleans up underneath? Does he shake at his head at Sportscenter highlights of Calvin Johnson leaping 18 feet in the air to pull down a Matthew Stafford pass? Does he go home in the off-season sit by the beach and imagine what it would be line up under center, look to his left and see Julio Jones, look to his right and see Roddy White and then look back to his left to see Tony Gonzalez. Does he take out the calculator and try to figure out how the small market Tampa Bay Bucs can provide Vincent Jackson and Doug Martin to Josh Freeman? He’d be crazy not to, right?

Nobody is saying that Mark Sanchez would be the same quarterback as Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco, or Matthew Stafford in the same situation. You might have argued that in 2010 when Sanchez led a 11-5 team to the AFC Championship Game and seemed to be growing as he outplayed Tom Brady in his own building in the playoffs. Those days are long gone now. Gone like the days when the New York Jets had one of the league’s best offensive lines, a rushing attack that could average more than 2.8 yards per carry and wide receivers who didn’t belong on a UFL roster.

Even a self-professed Sanchez Apologist has to admit there has been a clear regression in his play. Stats don’t need to tell the story because the game film does. In 2011, we saw the same inconsistencies we saw from Sanchez in 2010 except he didn’t rally in a big spot the way he traditionally did. He tanked in the team’s three biggest games of the season and didn’t offer a signature win all year.

It was also clear by the end of the season Sanchez’s supporting cast needed a tune up. The Jets were no longer a feared rushing attack and they didn’t have enough weapons in the passing game. Their once dominant offensive line had sunk to mediocre. Financially, the Jets doubled down on Sanchez by guaranteeing his money the next two years and proclaiming him their franchise quarterback. The next logical step was improving the rest of the offense to make sure that investment was a wise one.

We all know what happened. The Jets overvalued their own talent, believing Shonn Greene was a 1,500 yard back, Wayne Hunter and Matt Slauson would improve, and that Santonio Holmes could carry an inexperienced group of receivers. The only addition was Tim Tebow. We were given a cute story about how Mike Tannenbaum and Rex Ryan discussed the acquisition in an airport , realizing it made perfect sense with Tony Sparano now the offensive coordinator. Tebow would fill the talent gaps because the Jets had a unique plan to mix him into their offense which would provide a spark to both their running and passing game.

It has been pretty apparent through four games that it was a line of bullshit. The Jets coaching staff is completely clueless when it comes to mixing Tebow into their offense, failing to even take advantage of him in obvious situations, like 3rd and short. With each passing week, the Tebow acquisition is looking more and more like a 100% money-grab business decision. The reports are already surfacing now about Jets owner Woody Johnson pushing for Tebow in the starting line-up and now it seems like only a matter of time until #15 is under center full time.

Where does all this leave Sanchez? The guy who started out the season on fire for 5 quarters, followed it with 6 abysmal quarters, rallied late against Miami and then bottomed out against San Francisco. It leaves him facing the league’s best team in primetime with the worst collection of skill position players in the NFL, no seriously. Go bring up every depth chart in the NFL and tell me who has a worst group of running backs than Shonn Greene, Bilal Powell and Joe McKnight. Go bring up every depth chart in the NFL and tell me who has a worst group of wide receivers than Jeremy Kerley, Stephen Hill, Chaz Schilens, and Clyde Gates. There isn’t a worst starting tight end in the NFL than Jeff Cumberland. There isn’t a worst fullback in the NFL than John Conner.

(For the record, Jeremy Kerley is a very talented slot receiver. He is seriously miscast as a number one receiver at this point of his career though. Stephen Hill has a very high ceiling as a big play wideout but right now he is a rookie from a triple-option college offense)

It almost seems like Mike Tannenbaum is setting Sanchez up to fail…almost. I don’t buy into the conspiracy theories, I just think Tannenbaum is incompetent as a talent evaluator. Sanchez has been dealt a crap hand and needs to find a way to make it work. He needs to hold Tebow off for one more week, so he can remain under center for the Jets final three games before the bye where they have a puncher’s chance of going 2-1 to hit the halfway mark at 4-4.

If Sanchez duplicates his performance against San Francisco on Monday night, how could you not support calls for him to be benched? He must protect the football. He must be more accurate. He must show command of the offense. He doesn’t need to pull the upset off, he just needs to keep the Jets competitive against the league’s best team with his excessively weak supporting cast. It is sad expectations but they are realistic.

Why show any hesitance in handing the team off to Tebow? The reason is a 8-8 season from Tebow will be considered magical and create a media firestorm, the type of media firestorm that will encourage Woody Johnson to bring him back as the team’s starter next year. Where I believe you will be looking at another 8-8 type season. I will take Tebow more seriously as a starting quarterback than Sanchez when he shows he can beat New England, not lose by 30 points. I will take Tebow more seriously as a starting quarterback when he can win double digit games in a season and a road playoff game. If he does that as a starter for the Jets this year, then by all means make him your long term starting quarterback.

Ultimately, I’m still of the belief that if Sanchez is surrounded with a competent supporting cast that the Jets ceiling remains higher than it would with Tebow running a read-option offense. With no supporting cast? Maybe Tebow is a better option cause of his diverse skill set but knowing the history of this franchise, there is a reasonable fear the Jets will double down on Tebow if he is just decent the rest of 2012 dooming themselves to a few more years of mediocrity. I could see myself writing the same article at this time next year when the Jets are 1-3 because they didn’t upgrade the offense around Tebow and thought he could just carry it on his own.

Mike Tannenbaum’s recent failings as a General Manager and his own inconsistencies have pushed Mark Sanchez to the brink of his career as the New York Jets starting quarterback. Can he get off the mat one last time?

Turn On The Jets Week 5 Fantasy Football Preview

Mike Donnelly with his weekly fantasy football preview. Who should you bench and start?

This has been a rough NFL week for me. The Jets debacle speaks for itself. But almost as importantly, I lost in all three of my fantasy leagues this week due to stink bomb performances from a combination of Dennis Pitta, Percy Harvin, Darren McFadden, and Mikel Leshoure. All of these things added up put me in quite a foul football mood. In honor of that I’m going to list all the players I dislike for this week. It’s all negativity, all the time this week!

QB- Ben Roethlisberger vs. Phi – Yes, the Iggles are coming off a big win and are set up for a letdown performance, while Big Ben is coming off a bye. I don’t think it matters, because the Steelers are likely getting Rashard Mendenhall back and are going to look to establish some semblance of a running game, starting this week.

Prognosis: Borderline start in 12-team leagues.

QB- Michael Vick @ Pitt – I wasn’t kidding when I said I think the Eagles are primed for a letdown game this week against a rested Steelers defense. Could be a rough one for the Dog Murderer.

Prognosis: Wouldn’t start in a 12-team league.

QB- Kevin Kolb @ StL – I certainly hope you aren’t relying on Kevin Kolb, but if your starting QB is on a bye this week and you’re weak at backup, I could see the thought process. Unfortunately, these Thursday games have not gone too well for offenses, especially road teams, except for Eli throttling Carolina of course. This isn’t quite breaking news, but Kolb is no Eli, and St. Louis has a tough defense.

Prognosis: Would rather take a shot on Tannehill or Matt Hasselbeck.

RB- Alfred Morris vs. Atl – I’ve seen him ranked as an RB1 this week, and I just don’t see it. This game very well could turn into a shootout, and the running opportunities just may not be there for Alf this week.

Prognosis: Low-level RB2 this week.

RB- Stevan Ridley vs. Den – As a Ridley owner in all my league, this one pains me. Brady vs. Peyton could easily turn into a shootout, and when the Pats go to their no huddle, up-temp attack, they like to get Danny Woodhead in there, so unless Ridley gets a TD, the yardage total may leave you disappointed.

Prognosis: Slightly behind Alfred Morris.

RB- Ryan Williams @StL – Another Thursday Nighter. Everyone is pumped he’s going to be getting all the carries in Arizona now that Beanie Wells is hurt, but the fact is Arizona just stinks at running the ball for whatever reason (TERRIBLE O-LINE. That’s the reason). I see him as worth a shot as a flex play, but not the RB2 slam dunk most have him as.

Prognosis: RB3 or Flex option.

RB- Benjarvus Green-Ellis vs. Mia – Miami has a very stout run defense, and as I’ve said all season, BJGE just isn’t that good of a player.

Prognosis: Low-level RB3 or Flex.

RB- Shonn Greene vs. Hou – Sigh.

Prognosis: Again.. Sigh..

WR- Demaryius Thomas @ NE – In general, I love Demaryius this year. But this week against Belichick and the Patriots, I can see him being swarmed and Peyton Manning relying on the underneath stuff to Decker and Tamme all day. Obviously he’s worth starting, just keep the expectations in check.

Prognosis: More of a WR2 than an elite option.

WR- Brandon Lloyd vs. Den – Mr. Lloyd, meet Champ. Keep expectations in check, even though I would never recommend benching Tom Brady’s #1 wide receiver.

Prognosis: Low-level WR2 option.

WR- Pierre Garcon vs. Atl – Apparently Garcon isn’t going to be healthy for a few more weeks still, so even with him playing he may not get the amount of snaps necessary to make a big impact. And sadly, I don’t think we can rely on fumble recovery touchdowns every week.

Prognosis: WR3 or Flex option.

WR- Mike Wallace vs. Phi – Nnamdi Asomugha and the Eagles defense are fully aware of where Mike Wallace will be at all times. I wouldn’t expect a monster performance at all this week, especially since I think the Steelers will go out of their way to establish a run game.

Prognosis: Low-level WR2 or Flex option.

WR- James Jones @ Ind – Here is some friendly advice you should never forget: Do. Not. Trust. James. Jones. Ever. Every time he makes you think it’s safe to start him, he throws up a stat line along the lines of 2 catches/13 yards/1 fumble lost.

Prognosis: Never trust James Jones.

TE- Vernon Davis vs. Buff – The 49ers are going to run the BIlls over — literally. They’re going to run left, run up the middle, and run right. Then they’re going to do it again. And again. Davis will have his chances, but I don’t see him having a monster game.

Prognosis: Low-level TE1, not top 5.

TE- Greg Olsen vs. Sea – Seattle has a tough defense, and you better believe Olsen is going to be keyed on all day. This could be the week Carolina wakes up their sleeping run game as well.

Prognosis: TE2 option, or low-level Flex.

Two Weeks In The Life Of The New York Jets

TJ Rosenthal with a look at two weeks in the life of the New York Jets

“I read the news today oh boy..” are the epic words that kick off the Beatles timeless 1967 song “A Day In The Life.” The song’s story, which told the tale of the routines that take place during a typical person’s twenty four cycle, meets a monstrous crashing orchestral cresendo of mayhem during the songs middle. A sound that may best describe the entire past two weeks in the life of the New York Jets. A team that despite being in a three way tie for first place, have gone helmet to helmet lately, with the explosive speed of their own headline grabbing existence

Here’s a look back:

Sept 21: LB Bart Scott has to be held back from Jets Confidential reporter Dan Leberfeld, who took a photo of Scott with a female reporter. Scott, who has boycotted the press for labeling the Jets a circus act prior to training camp, took issue with the photo.

Sept 22: Longtime Jet LB Bryan Thomas is released with the notion that he will be re- signed the following Monday. Thomas is insulted, but remains professional about it.

Sept 23: Jets win a wild 23-20 OT thriller at Miami but Darrelle Revis leaves the game with what many fear is a season ending ACL injury. The game is as crazy as the Jets season has been to date. A stalled offense, an inability to slow down a rookie QB late in the game, and a missed FG by trusted Dolphins K Dan Carpenter leave the Jets just enough room to escape. The win is overshadowed by gloom over the impending doom  of losing the NFL ‘s top corner.

Sept 24: Jets officially announce that Revis is out for the season with a torn ACL in his left knee. Thomas is re-signed, as originally planned by the club.

Sept 26: With Revis out, Jets move RB/KR Joe McKnight to CB. McKnight tells the media he will interpret the switch to defense as a sign that he failed as a RB.

Sept 28: Jets announce they won’t put Revis on season ending IR, in order to hold out for the possibility that he could be back in time for the Super Bowl. Provided the Jets get there and that Revis is somehow up to speed by then.

Sept 30: 49ers blow out the Jets 34-0 at home in a game that the wildcat, the Jets secret summer formation, is used against them. Tim Tebow’s first complete pass goes to TE Dedrick Epps, who then fumbles, gets injured on the play, and is released on Monday. Worse, Santonio Holmes also goes down after a catch on a play that becomes a 51 yard fumble recovery for TD for the Niner defense.

Oct 1: One day after the embarassment at Met Life, Owner Woody Johnson tells Bloomberg TV that if it came down to the Jets having a winning season and Mitt Romney winning the White House “you always have to put your country first.” Johnson is the chairman of Romney’s campaign in New York.

Oct 2: ESPN reports that two people close to Johnson speculate that the owner will push his football people to start Tim Tebow at QB. The sources are, and continue to be unnamed. This on the same day that Johnson’s wife Suzanne unveils her new NFL womens apparel at a Gala event in New York City atended by Mark Sanchez.

Oct 3: A busy day: Holmes, the only proven playmaker the Jets have on offense, is ruled out for the season with a Lisfranc injury to his foot. WR Jason Hill, who as a Jaguar in 2011 called the Jets “overhyped” prior to their matchup with Gang Green, is signed to fill the void. 49ers DB Carlos Rogers tells Sirius XM radio that the Jets defense essentially quit days prior. A charge that Rex Ryan defended by saying his unit was tired by the fourth quarter. Legendary Jets Superfan Fireman Ed calls Holmes “a selfish bastard” on twitter, adding “let’s see how Jets do without the ME guy” who caught 9 balls for 147 yards in saving his team two weeks back. Romney fares well in his first debate against President Obama in Denver, Colorado. Tebow’s old stomping grounds.

Oct 4: Starters WR Stephen Hill and TE Dustin Keller do not practice again, leaving the Jets in danger of rolling out a starting corps of journeyman Chaz Schilens, Jeremy Kerley, and backup TE Jeff Cumberland, to take on the undefeated Houston Texans on Monday Night Football Oct 8. Ryan notes that Sanchez throws just one incompletion at practice earlier.

Now, we ask any team on Earth, to try and top that timeline given the window of days within which all of those events took place. As the late Clash frontman Joe Strummer once plainly and famously said, “the future is unwritten.” God only knows what’s in store next for the ever changing 2012 Jets.

Turn On The Jets Week 5 Roundtable – Jets vs. Texans Match-Ups

The TOJ staff discusses what match-up they are most looking forward to in Jets/Texans

Joe Caporoso – Smart Football vs. Making Money – If the New York Jets are smart they will run a crafty offensive game plan that utilizes trick plays, occasional Tebow use and anything else to avoid playing the Houston defense straight up. If they are stupid and looking to shatter what little confidence Mark Sanchez has left, they will run a standard game plan, hand the ball to Shonn Greene 15 times and drop Sanchez back while he waits for receivers like Clyde Gates to get open. In that scenario, Sanchez is obviously going to struggle, leading to him being benched for next week’s “easy” game against Colts and the ushering in of the Tebow era. We are already hearing chatter about owner Woody Johnson pushing for him to play as it seems the Jets care more about being a money making gimmick than building a successful football team.

Tebow has value on this team, as a runner with occasional passes mixed in. As a full time starting quarterback for the long term? Absolutely not.

Chris Gross – The Jets Run Defense vs. Houston’s Running Attack – New York is coming off their most embarrassing defensive performance in the Rex Ryan era, having allowed 245 yards rushing to 9 different ball carriers in their home blowout to the San Francisco 49ers. For a team that was once proud of stout defense, the Jets seem to have lost their roots. However, after extensive film review, many of New York’s defensive woes are fixable. With the 9th ranked rushing offense coming to town this Monday night, it will be very interesting to see how this unit responds after such a disappointing performance. Will they go in the tank and continue to be pushed around by opposing offenses week in and week out? Or will they find that notorious swagger that propelled them to two consecutive AFC Championship games just a couple seasons ago, by shutting down the two headed monster of Arian Foster and Ben Tate? Monday night will tell us a lot about where this team is headed for the remainder of this season.

Chris Celletti – Matchup: Jets’ run defense vs. Arian Foster/Ben Tate. Rex Ryan’s defense has been completely torn apart so far in 2012, and surprisingly it’s the run defense specifically that has been putrid. The Jets’ have been exposed as an aging,  slow and poor-tackling defense, which does not bode well when you’re trying to stop your opponents’ rushing attacks. On Monday night, the Jets have no chance to beat the Texans if Arian Foster and Ben Tate run wild. If Houston controls field position and time of possession, do you expect the Jets’ offense to do anything positive against Houston’s tough defense, having limited possessions and bad field position? The only way the Jets win is if they’re the ones who can limit Houston’s possessions and win the field position battle. That starts with stopping the ground game, a very tall order for this current Jets’ defense. If Foster has a big day, the Jets will be 2-3 and on the verge of an early season meltdown.

TJ Rosenthal – The matchup we anticipate the most is Mark Sanchez going against the crowd, his own inner demons, and the Texans. All with limited weaponry to aid him. Can Sanchez somehow keep his cool, avoid mistakes and moping, and save his job? After all, we hear the owner, a huge Romney fan by the way, bigger than he is a Jet fan, is rumored to be pushing for Tebow to take his job. If things crash Monday for 6, there will be a new pilot sooner rather than later. Right or wrong, that’s where the Jets are at this moment.

Rob Celletti – Matchup? Do the Jets match up anywhere on the field with the Houston Texans? This game barely feels like a fair fight. The Texans sport an elite rushing attack; the Jets’ answer is the second-worst run defense in the league. Calling the Jet offense anemic would be a compliment; actually, calling it an “offense” is a compliment. Meanwhile, the Texans’ defense is downright ferocious.

So what matchup am I looking forward to this week? Mark Sanchez vs. the bloodthirsty MetLife Stadium crowd? Rex Ryan vs. heartburn? Actually, I’m looking forward to seeing how Bob Malone does. Seriously. Sort of.  The recipe for a major upset in the NFL usually involves most, if not all of the following: mistake-free football, taking advantage of good starting field position, and scores from unexpected places. The Jets’ special teams is the one part of their game that hasn’t been lambasted for the last 10 days, and there’s a reason for that: the unit is capable and well-coached. The only way the Jets are competitive in this game is if they get an otherworldly special teams performance, coupled with some timely (and of course highly unlikely) defensive stops.

New York Jets Week 5 – Early Thoughts On Jets vs. Texans

Early thoughts on the New York Jets week 5 match-up against the Houston Texans

There has been no game since Rex Ryan has taken over the New York Jets where the team has been a larger underdog and rightfully so. The Houston Texans are loaded and are likely the league’s best team, the Jets will be running out their weakest overall roster since the 2007 season. Here are some early thoughts on Jets/Texans – 

1. Dustin Keller and Stephen Hill’s status remains up in the air for this game. If they do not play, you are looking at a top three wide receivers of Jeremy Kerley, Chaz Schilens and Clyde Gates with Jeff Cumberland at tight end. Wow. Needless to say, Tony Sparano is a complete moron if he thinks he can run a traditional offense with that collection of skill players (never-mind Shonn “2.8 YPC” Greene at halfback) and move the ball against Houston’s defense. It is time for a gadget play heavy, Wildcat infused, empty the kitchen sink approach.

I am talking about lining Joe McKnight at wide receiver since he is better at the position than Gates, along with throwing him screen passes and using him in the Wildcat. I am talking about having Tim Tebow running option to either side of the formation with McKnight, Bilal Powell or Jeremy Kerley. I am talking about making sure Kerley, the unit’s most proven playmaker, gets 8-12 touches between receptions and rushes. I am talking about halfback passes, jump passes, reverses and anything else that might catch Houston off guard. Drop in a full series of Tebow here and there. Do something. Just for the love of god, don’t come out and give Shonn Greene 14 carries for 27 yards and hope you can drop Sanchez back while relying on people like Clyde Gates to beat coverage.

2. The Jets 31st ranked rushing defense has to find a way to deal with Arian Foster, Ben Tate and Justin Forsett…three backs that are better than any back on their roster. Memo to Mike Tannenbaum – You need good running backs to Ground and Pound. There is no easy answer here. Try more 4-3 and 46 looks, get Kenrick Ellis in the starting line-up for an injured Sione Pouha and try to force Houston to throw the ball. When they do that, you have to hope Antonio Cromartie is up to the challenge of covering Andre Johnson and that Matt Schaub ignores throwing at Kyle Wilson for sympathy out of how awful he is.

3. The Jets special teams, which has been solid so far this year needs to come up with a few big plays. The only way this game is competitive is if they find ways to manufacture points through the return and kicking game.

4. Monday is really a matter of pride. The Jets have to know the whole country will be watching with glee hoping they get curb-stomped 47-0. Are they going to lay down and let that happen on national television in their own building or are they going to have some respect for themselves as professional athletes? We shall see.

Turn On The Jets Stock Watch – Fire Sale Edition

Mike Donnelly with his weekly Stock Watch. Where everything must go!

At this point there isn’t a whole heck of a lot left to say about the debacle of a game last week against the 49ers that hasn’t already been said by everyone. Sanchez stunk. The run game is crap. The wide receivers wouldn’t even start for the University of Alabama. The tight ends wouldn’t even MAKE the University of Alabama team. The linebackers should be put out to pasture. There is no pass rush. Kyle Wilson is yet another blemish on Mike Tannenbaum’s draft record. Ah yes, Mike Tannenbaum, the General Manager who refused to read my letter to him before the season. Perhaps he should have heeded my advice, because I warned him in that letter that the complete and utter lack of a plan on this team was going to get him fired, and it’s looking like that’s going to be the case. (Crossing my fingers.)

Rather than buy and sell, or more accurately just sell everything from last week’s performance, I’m going to run down the things I’m buying for the rest of the season and what I — and all Jets fans — should be hoping to see from here on out.

BUY: Mark Sanchez start every game – I don’t care how bad he looked last week (and even the most ardent Sanchez supporter would have to say he played poorly), he is the best option for this team at quarterback. Tim Tebow is not the solution long-term so what is the point? Greg McElroy isn’t the answer, unless the question is “Who should be the backup quarterback next season?”. Let’s see if Sanchez can make chicken salad out of chicken you-know-what. His receivers without Holmes are terrible. TERRIBLE. His right tackle is terrible. His tight ends with Keller out are terrible. Actually “terrible” isn’t even a strong enough word for Jeff Cumberland and Dedrick Epps. I’d need to combine several gross words to describe them. They’re terribawfulcrap. The run game is an embarrassment to run games. I wouldn’t even call it a “run game” because what they do isn’t running the ball as much as much as it’s just slowly falling forward each time it’s handed off. The point is, Sanchez has the worst supporting cast around him in the NFL at this point. Let’s see if he can play well despite that and earn the trust of the coaching staff and fan base going forward. I’m still a believer.

BUY: Powell, McKnight, and Grimes at RB – Nobody defended Shonn Greene more than me heading into this season, but it’s over. He’s a complementary back, and it won’t be for the Jets going forward so there’s not much of a point to seeing him plod ahead and fall down for 3 yards over and over. We know what he can do. He’s still a useful player in the right situation, and if the Jets were good still, I’d be saying he should definitely be getting plenty of touches. But the Jets aren’t good. Let’s see if Bilal Powell can be next season’s starter. Let’s FINALLY see what Joe McKnight can do — on offense, not as a cornerback. And let’s see if this Jonathan Grimes character off the Texans practice squad can offer anything at all. Why not, right?

BUY: Hill, Kerley, Schilens at WR – Could this be considered a “good” group of WR’s? No of course not. That’s a laughable thought. It’s probably the worst group in the NFL. But there certainly isn’t much of a point to bringing in Terrell Owens or Plaxico Burress is there? Could a guy like Plax help this team go from a 5 win team to a 6 win team? Perhaps, but in the long run that hurts us. Let the young guys play and hope they improve enough to be reliable contributors next season, especially Hill. It’s a good thing Mike Tannenbaum loaded this roster with #4 receivers though, isn’t it? Any time you can give your starting QB two #4 receivers, a solid slot guy, and a #142 tight end to throw to, you do it and wait for the wins to pile up!

BUY: Vlad Ducasse at Guard – Gulp. Yes, I said it. If the team is going to pretend Vlad Ducasse is a real NFL player and hope none of us notice, then let’s freaking see it. Throw the big oaf out there and let’s see if he can manage to not get any of his teammates killed. And if he trips and falls over Jeff Cumberland and knocks him out a few weeks, then at least we can say Vlad finally contributed to the team.

BUY: Quinton Coples – !!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yes, I know it’s a novel concept, but let’s play our first round pick who just happens to be our ONLY threat as a pass rusher up front. Last week the Jets had 3 pressures, which sadly is not a misprint. Anyway, Coples had 2 of them in limited action. Let’s see more 4-man fronts, and I don’t want to hear about how Coples struggles against the run for two reasons. 1) I don’t even think that’s true, and 2) Even if it is true, are Calvin Pace, Bryan Thomas, and Garrett McIntyre doing ANYTHING out there that would make you think they deserve snaps? Speaking of which..

BUY: Aaron Maybin – Same logic as with Coples, really. He can rush the passer, which the Jets seem to be allergic to. And sure he sucks against the run, but here’s the thing: SO DOES EVERYONE ELSE! Who cares? Maybe he’ll manage to create some havoc and get into the backfield for a change. And if he doesn’t, there’s really not much difference than the other guys.

BUY: Demario Davis at LB – It sure would be nice to see a linebacker who doesn’t need a sun dial to time his 40 yard dash, wouldn’t it? I know I’ve used that joke before, but I will continue to do so until it isn’t relevant to the Jets roster. The linebackers are ssslllloooooowwwww. If it was 1988, then having all these big, slow as crap linebackers would probably be a good thing. But it’s not 1988, and it’s definitely not a good thing.

BUY: Aaron Berry at CB – Kyle Wilson sucks. I was hoping against hope that it wasn’t true, but it is. The guy looks like he has absolutely no clue what he’s doing out there. And after watching him finger-wag Mario Manningham last week after getting absolutely torched repeatedly, he makes me think he’s the worst kind of suck too. He legitimately thinks he’s good and has a major false sense of accomplishment. Considering he’ll be out of the league in 2 years, I hope he saved up some of that big bag of money that Mike Tannenbaum gave him. Aaron Berry is a horrible human being, but he was a pretty solid cornerback for Detroit and likely will help more as a nickel back between Revis and Cromartie than Wilson ever did.

BUY: A high draft pick – Sadly, it’s looking like the team that was oh-so-close just two years ago is completely shot. The team needed to be re-tooled over the past two offseasons at several key positions like linebacker, offensive line, and running back, but it never happened. Draft busts like Kyle Wilson, Vlad Duacasse, and pretty much all the running backs that Tannenbaum loves collecting have been useless. There is no depth, no talent on offense, little talent on defense, and our star player in Darrelle Revis is injured. As a fan, it’s impossible to root against the Jets when they play on Sundays, but it wouldn’t be the end of the world if this ends in 5-11 or something like that. Tannenbaum will likely be canned, veterans like Pace and Scott and their big contracts with be purged, and things will look much different next year. Hopefully all these injuries and subpar performances land us a really high draft pick for the first time since 2008 so even our pathetic scouting department can’t mess it up.

Oh wait, that year we drafted Vernon Gholston. We are doomed.