Tonight the Jets opened the preseason defeating the Colts 13-10. It was sloppy like most first preseason games are with areas of improvement apparent but there is also reason for optimism for Jets fans. Here are the Quick Hits:
1) The Quarterbacks - Geno Smith was 4/6 for 33 yards and had a 10 yard run for a 1st down. He only had 2 drives because the defense couldn’t get off the field and managed a field goal in his second drive. His ball placement was good, there were no turnovers or anything close to 1. His decisions were crisp. He didn’t wow with his stats but he played a perfectly acceptable game. The two things I found fault with is a pass he threw away to Bohanon under heavy rush that was a little risky and he did not audible out or slide protection on an overload blitz that forced a quick throw incompletion on the 3rd down before the field goal. The first drive failed because a false start penalty on Nelson negated a 1st down throw to Cumberland on a 3rd and 9 making it 3rd and 14. Smith made the correct decision to dump down to Chris Johnson who ran for 9 yards. The second drive had flow after an 11 yard completion to Cumberland, a 10 yard run by Smith and a pass to Decker for 5. The 3rd and 6 play was where Smith should have audibled and the incompletion forced a field goal. Smith seems to already have a rapport with Decker which is excellent to see.
Vick led a 7 minute 15 play touchdown drive and was 3/6 for 17 yards. His 3 completions included a key 3rd down throw to Amaro and a 4th down play action pass to Bohanon. Vick also ran for 19 yards including a 15 yard scramble. The drive was a run based drive where the Jets finally started to attack the line of scrimmage. They were also helped out by 30 yards worth of Colt penalties. Vick’s ball placement was good and only had one chance at a turnover when he was almost in his 2nd drive (a 3 and out with the 2nd team o-line) strip sacked but he held on.
Matt Simms played the 2nd half and he played decently and like Matt Simms usually plays. It’s graded on a curve because he was playing against the Colts’ scrubs. He isn’t going to start barring multiple injuries but he seems to be performing well enough to hold off Tajh Boyd who will have to accept a practice squad spot, if he isn’t grabbed on waivers by another team.
2) Some stars - Dee Milliner looked terrific with 2 pass breakups when he was in good position and should have intercepted a pass in the end zone. Quinton Coples was very active either stuffing the run or beating his block to get in the backfield. He got a gimme sack when a snap flew over Luck’s head and Coples touched him down. He also looked very good chasing down a running back on a flat pass. Eric Decker caught 2 balls for 12 yards but showed that he knows how to get open and quickly using his route running to get to his spot. Other than being mismatched on TY Hilton in coverage for a play David Harris had 6 tackles and a sack. Chris Johnson looked good on the 2 catches he had for 16 yards and found the end zone with a short run. Ivory was running pretty well before he injured his rib. Demario Davis destroyed a receiver catching a swing pass. Jace Amaro used his body well and caught a key 3rd down pass then took a flat pass and turned it upfield for 13 yards. Amaro actually led the Jets in receiving with 2 catches for 18 yards. 13 different Jets caught passes. Daryl Richardson and Alex Green ran well in the 2nd half. IK Enempkali had a strip sack to end the game.
3) Some who struggled - Dimitri Patterson had a nightmare game. In addition to allowing a key 3rd down completion for 16 yards to Nicks, he was also beaten deep cleanly by Da’Rick Rogers for 45 yards then committed a defensive holding penalty away from the ball that extended a Colts drive. Jason Babin did not set the edge on a couple of occasions and allowed runs in his direction. Jeremiah George seemed overmatched in coverage and was getting abused on passes in the flat to the running back. Muhammad Wilkerson and Sheldon Richardson were extremely quiet. Stephen Hill was a non-factor. David Nelson struggled with penalties and a drop and injured his hand. Ben Ijalana got beat clean for a sack and Daryl Richardson’s pass protection was terrible and he fumbled but recovered his own fumble. Both Jets punters were terrible. They need another option at that position. The Colts 1st team defense’s blitz scheme confused the Jets which led to pressure. Hard to tell at first glance who was responsible.