Mark Sanchez, the WRs, and the Importance of Chemistry


Oct 23, 2011; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez (6) wide receiver Santonio Holmes (10) celebrate after a touchdown during the first half. The play was overturned by a penalty. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-US PRESSWIRE

2 AFC Championship games, followed by an 8-8 season by the Jets. Year four begins of the Rex Ryan era.

Mark Sanchez set a career high with 26 TD passes, and accounted for 32 overall. However, we saw many times during the season where he and the offense were not on the same page. Santonio Holmes did a lot of griping last season, which culminated in the on-field display in Miami.

Jets West has come and gone, so the next time everyone will be together is in a few weeks at SUNY Cortland at training camp. This is a big year for the Jets, and especially for the offense as they learn a new playbook.

What will make the difference for the Jets offense, is chemistry. Chemsitry between Sanchez and the group of wide receivers.

Read on, and we will talk more about it.

First off, let’s take a look at the applicable definitions of the word chemsitry, from

sympathetic understanding; rapport. the interaction of one personality with another

Rapport. Rapport is an interesting word when talking about a quarterback and his wide receivers.

Mark Sanchez has not kept a group of wide receivers together from year to year. The only one that has been with him his entire career is Dustin Keller. Through the years, favorite targets of his have come and gone, such as Braylon Edwards and Jerricho Cotchery. As such, the issue of chemistry is one that is revisited from year to year, which makes it even more important.

Why is it so important?


Look at the great offenses around this sport through the years. Look at Peyton Manning and his Colts crew through the years. How about Aaron Rodgers and his core? Even (sigh), Tom Brady and his 8 million weapons. For the older fans, think about the vintage San Francisco 49ers teams with Bill Walsh.

What do they have in common?

The quarterback, in all cases, is in perfect sync with the wide receivers. When you drop back to pass in the NFL, you have at most, 3 seconds to get rid of the football. The quarterback must know where his receiver is going to be, before the receiver gets there in order to be successful. On the great teams, the ball is released as the receiver is making his cut. The catch is made in stride, for the most yards after the catch possible.

What does that take? Timing. How do you perfect timing? Establish chemistry with the wide receivers.


These guys don’t have to be the best of friends. Clearly they aren’t always, as we saw last season. But what has to happen is rapport on the field, which comes from establishing chemistry.

What do we mean by on the field rapport? Well, do you ever see those plays where the receiver breaks his route off short, and the QB overthrows him because he thought he was going deep? How about vice versa? That happens because the receiver and the quarterback are seeing the play differently.

Much of NFL offense, especially passing offense, comes from on site adjustments. Whether the defense is playing for a long route, so you break it off short, or vice versa. The quarterback and his receivers must see plays the same way.

This comes from on field rapport, which goes directly into the team of the day, establishing chemistry.

So how do they do this? Find out on the next page.

You establish chemistry, the same way you get to Carnegie Hall, “Practice, practice, practice”.

As we mentioned before, the guys that Mark Sanchez has gotten to work with have been changed every year. So Jets West is of the utmost importance.

They must get on the field, and be led by Mark Sanchez. They must get to work, learning pass routes, learning the playbook, and just get on the field together. Mark has to learn how his new receivers run routes, where they like the ball placed, and how quickly they make their cuts. The WRs must learn how to read Sanchez’s eyes, how the ball feels coming in off of his hands…etc.

These are the steps to establish chemistry. It must be done, otherwise, we are in for a long season.