1st & 10: Another Division Loss… but with Encouraging Signs!

Stephen Russo offers 10 thoughts on the Jets ahead of this week’s Texans game.


These are the types of losses that we can stomach. Competent, competitive football with young, core players making big plays with a shot to win in the 4th quarter. This is what the season is about for the youngest team, with the most snaps played by rookies, coached by a very green coaching staff is about. While no one is walking away feeling like this is a moral victory (it is not), you can come away with some encouragement about this team and the direction it is heading – particularly when Zach Wilson returns. I am certainly not OK with being 0-10 in the last 10 division games, or losing to a bad Miami team at home, but following the last few weeks, there is progress there. I am happy about that.

& 10…

1. The Jets defense allowed Tua Tagovailoa to complete 82% of his passes yesterday. In 10 games, they have given up the following completion percentages to opposing QB’s: 69, 73, 76, 61, 73, 66, 62, 73, 75, and 82. They’ve never held an opposing QB below 61% completion percentage. Simply put, it is just way too easy to complete passes against this defense.

2. It is somewhat perplexing that Ty Johnson’s carries were given away to Tevin Coleman yesterday. I would have to believe that it was due to blitz protection given Coleman’s experience and Miami’s propensity to send the house. Coleman didn’t look bad, but I like Johnson’s game, particularly from a screen aspect. We will see more of how they both look in coming weeks with Carter injured.

3. John Franklin-Myers picked a bad way to show back up for us post-extension. That roughing the passer penalty was a huge mistake in a bad spot, and may have cost the Jets the game.

4. Elijah Moore is WR #1. End of story.

5. The Jets have had 4 passers (Wilson, White, Johnson, Flacco) throw for more than 290 yards in a game this season. Adam Gase had that twice in two seasons as Jets’ Head Coach – both in 2019.

6. Mike LaFleur has been an entirely different offensive coordinator after the NE game and since going in the booth. The Jets have an offense that is getting more competent and fun to watch.

7. I loved Saleh’s decision to go for it on 4th and goal. I hated his decision to kick a 55-yard field goal.

8. The decision to sign Jarrad Davis in the opening hours of free agency may be one of the most perplexing moves that Joe Douglas has made in his Jets tenure.

9. I would argue that the Jets need at least 6 new defensive starters next year… and I think I’m being generous.

10. I typically listen to Robert Saleh’s interviews with the “Michael Kay Show” on ESPN Radio every Monday following the Jets games. When I listened to him last week, and when he answered a question on if he expected to be where he’s at with this team right now, his answer gave me insight into his plan for this team and his knowledge of the building process. I think he and Joe Douglas have a true plan for this team, and it starts by playing youth across the board, and they know there are going to be bumps and bruises along the way. And while none of us want this team to be 2-8 at the 10-game mark, this will prove beneficial in the long run. When Wilson returns, and the Jets show legitimate progress in the last 7 games, I think the light at the end of the tunnel will begin to show itself and this fanbase will be genuinely excited about what 2022 can bring.