We certainly have had a lot to be concerned about, Jets fans. Between major injuries, and poor play, we have had a lot of reason to feel dejected. For a team that is 2-2 and leading its division, things seem pretty bleak. It feels like it all is going to come down around us in the next few weeks.
But, it is not over. There are some reasons to stay optimistic. Maybe it’s a skewed outlook, but here are some reasons, I believe, to keep our spirits up:
FOR ALL ITS STRUGGLES, THE DEFENSE IS KEEPING THEM IN GAMES
The defense has underperformed and then some, don’t get me wrong. When a Rex Ryan defense is ranked 31st against the run, something is wrong. There are no two ways about it. They have looked slow, and old, as young speed running backs run past them like they are stuck in quick sand. This defense has to get better, fast!
But that being said, for the most part, the defense has been “bend but not break”. Think about the two losses, neither of them were blowouts until it was late in the game. The Pittsburgh game was 13-10 at the half. The defense was keeping the team in the game, only letting it get out of hand after getting tired thanks to no rest. Even the debacle last week was still within reach at halftime. It was, although it’s hard to keep in our minds that the game was EVER in reach. The game was 10-0 at halftime. Until the defense ran out of gas, thanks to a poor showing from the offense, the defense was keeping the team in games. It wasn’t GREAT, but it was doing its job.
Imagine how that will start to work out if the defense figures out how to tackle, think about it.
LARON LANDRY IS MAKING A DIFFERENCE OVER THE MIDDLE
We have seen LaRon’s stupid penalties, I am not discounting those. But take a look at these stats: 2 catches for 28 yards, 5 catches for 47 yards, 3 catches for 19 yards, and 4 catches for 38 yards. You know what those are? Those are the receiving totals for the starting tight ends of the Jets’ opponents so far in 2012.
A fact that has slipped through the cracks thus far, due to the other obviously growing issues, is the fact that the Jets have vastly improved the play against the tight end. Landry is making his presence felt over the middle, and other teams are taking notice. Without even taking the visual, LaRon’s hitting ability, into account, you can tell that other teams are taking notice. Look at the numbers, tight ends are not putting up the same numbers as they have in the past. The Patriots have to notice this. When it comes time to play our rivals from New England, as well as other top tight ends in the league, there will be a difference. Watch.