The Danger of Relaxing on the CouchWasn’t it fun wondering why Bills QB EJ Manuel was making shaky decisions for the Bills in Pittsburgh that we all yell at Geno Smith through the TV for when HE acts like a rookie too? Eli Manning escaped lowly Oakland at home but not before throwing another pick six at home that at the time gave the Raiders a 17-14 lead and made a number of us with no emotional battery power wasted say “how can you throw that?”
Later in the day it was painful watching the Chargers try to find space for RB Ryan Matthews on the ground against the rival Broncos while pretending to see through the eyes of a Bolts fan. Worse from that perspective was watching Phillip Rivers save some shoddy pocket presence for late in the 4th quarter. When shoestring tackles under duress often seem to ruin his day. It was all fun and games were rooting for Denver anyway. Finding some humor in all teams on NFL Network’s Red Zone channel without a dog in the fight was entertaining and of course risk free. Knowing that an overachieving 5-4 Jet team was on a bye week and getting help in the AFC Wildcard race to boot.
The danger though is that the slices of pizza and bowls of chips we all ate on the couch under zero stress yesterday has made us soft again. Lethargic. Unmotivated. Flat. Bye weeks can do that to players and yes, even diehards.
Rex Ryan has to pull yet another 2013 magic trick today by getting his upstart team back in gear. Feeling doubted, desperate, angry, fired up. Confident. The Jets have to propel themselves out of the week 10 break and can do so only if they pick up where they left off when they beat the Saints in week 9. Let’s hope that a little R and R hasn’t gotten in the way of all the work that set this second half up for the taking so beautifully.The Benefits of a Two Week Break
It is key that the layoff allowed for: Healing injuries like the ones to starters Santonio Holmes, Jeff Cumberland, Antonio Cromartie and Antonio Allen. Time so new Jet weapons Josh Cribbs, David Nelson, Greg Salas, and Zach Sudfeld could get deeper into the playbook. Geno Smith the ability to assess then strengthen his play thanks to extra hours spent watching film. Ryan and Marty Mornhinweg the chance to install a few more plays and schemes. It’s fun to imagine this Jets team growing and moving on even more cylinders through November, isn’t it?
The Irony of Dustin Keller and Darrelle Revis
DK and Revis Island both left the a Jets to self proclaimed greener pastures and more harmonious franchises down south this year. Or so it seemed. We wish DK well in his recovery from the brutal knee injury suffered this summer, but isn’t it ironic that the no drama Jets are in the playoff hunt and love their HC as the two Florida teams have coaches and even GM’s on the hot seat? The Bucs are 0-8 and have been the epitome of backstabbing and turmoil since week one. The Dolphins and their bully scandal have made them a team in turmoil and thanks to questionable denials of involvement in the mess from Joe Philbin, without accountability starting from the top of their food chain. So much for winning games on paper and the notion that change can do you good.Quick Hits
– If Chris Ivory can keep running downhill the Jets are going to the playoffs.
– Got this funny feeling that Quinton Coples and Dee Milliner are poised for great second halves.
– The Jets get Kellen Winslow back from suspension now. He was a favorite target of Geno’s early on.
– Its never too early to scoreboard watch but it is too early to obsess over it. Take care of your own business Jets, and it will all work out.
– If the Jets were in the NFC East right now they’d be in sole possession of first place. If they switched divisions with the Giants back in 2011, the Super Bowl champion Giants might have missed the playoffs and the Jets would have been division champs at 9-7. Not the severe disappointment they were painted as. It’s easier to mount season turnarounds and withstand untimely losing skids when a .500 record by December most likely has playoff implications. Hope is never that far away.