Needing help from other teams today, the New York Jets forget one important thing before their game against the Miami Dolphins; they needed to show up to win.
With a 19-17 loss, the Jets’ season has come to an end with a pitiful performance that will leave many questions for the offseason; and they will all center around quarterback Mark Sanchez, and his sudden fall from grace.
Head coach Rex Ryan doesn’t like to look the fool, but with his guarantees about super bowls, Ryan will be eating humble pie this offseason. Look for someone to feel his wrath, most likely offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer.
Let’s recap today’s failure.
1. Sanchez needs to figure out what went wrong. Three horrible interceptions (two by DT Randy Starks) and a frantic pace in the pocket that would make any nervous. Sanchez (21-for-32, 207 yards) still hasn’t shown the ability to see down the field and spot a second much less third receiver to throw to. If his first target is covered, usually the RB or Tight End Dustin Keller, then look for a sack or interception. That’s not a good sign for a franchise QB.
2. Jeremy Kerley for QB? The Jets’ longest completion of the day was thrown by Jeremy Kerley, on a 41 yard throw to TE Matt Mulligan. The throw not only tied the Jets mark for the second-longest completion of the season but actually looked better than any throw Sanchez has made this season.
3. Plaxico Burress and Santonio Holmes. There. We said their name more than the announcers today. Invisible and unmotivated today. Apparently, Holmes was benched for the final two minutes after getting into a shouting matching with a teammate in the huddle. We aren’t sure if the benching was deserved as Holmes’ attitude has left much to be desired, or another weird decision by a Jets coaching staff that seemed clueless this season.
4. Jets Defense. In this crucial, do or die, game, the Jets defense allowed a 21-play, 94-yard touchdown drive that used 12:29 of the third quarter and fourth quarter. 21 plays ! The last time the Jets allowed a 21-play drive was in 1993. The drive marked the longest in Dolphins history in terms of plays and time of possession.
5. Jets penalties. A recurring theme this season. No, not Mulligan being flagged for another penalty (he was flagged twice for false starts and once for a facemask, bringing his season total to nine penalties), the Jets were flagged five times for false starts. Offensive line woes continue.
6. Points off turnovers. The Jets have given up 126 points off turnovers this year, the most in the NFL.
7. LT. One of the lone bright spots, Kerley being the other, LaDainian Tomlinson plays with swagger and speed. Unfortunately, LT was the only Jet to realize the importance of this game.