Jets Coordinators Preview Tomorrow’s Game


Sept 23, 2012; Miami, FL, USA; New York Jets offensive coordinator Tony Sparano reacts after defeating the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. THe Jets won 23-20 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

The Jets begin a tough stretch of two games tomorrow, when they take on the San Francisco 49ers tomorrow at MetLife Stadium. As coach Ryan said earlier this week, the Jets are going to have to be close to perfect in order to win the football game. The Jets coordinators talked about the upcoming opponent this week when they met with the media. First, offensive coordinator Tony Sparano talked about his concerns with the 49ers defense:

They create turnovers, first and foremost. They take the ball away and they don’t give it away very often. I know they gave it away last week, and that resulted in a loss. I think they were, obviously one of the best, if not the best team in the league last year in turnover ratio. They intercept it at a high rate and they cause fumbles. They got to the quarterback 42 times last year and that one kid there, Aldon Smith obviously, had 14 sacks as a rookie coming in. They can create pressure and they have some guys that fly around pretty good and they create turnovers. They also force you into long-yardage situations. They can keep you in long-yardage situations, and when they get you in those, that’s one of the things you want to try to avoid.

Getting the running game going has been tough for the Jets so far. Sparano talked about how to make it better:

It’s everybody, it’s a collective effort. It’s all of them. It’s backs, tight ends, running backs, receivers blocking, and me calling plays. We all have to do a better job that way. The group we played last week, we knew that was going to be a hard game to run the football. (They are) a hard team to run the football against. We felt like we left some things out on the field there. We can come in here every week and say that, but eventually we have to get it right. We’ll get it right. We’re getting closer and closer. As I said to you in training camp, it can be one player on one play (that does not get it right) on offense, and you can’t cover it up. It’s really hard to cover it up, where on defense you can cover it up with other people running to the football. Here with the running game, you have to have 11 working like one. That is starting to happen more and more. That group last week played two of the best rushing teams in Week One and Two. I’m not proud of what we came out of there with average wise, but we averaged more (per carry) than either one of those teams did against that team.

July 29, 2012; Cortland, NY, USA; New York Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine prepares to call a defensive play during training camp at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-US PRESSWIRE

Defensive coordinator Mike Pettine also talked about the game, discussing a 49ers threat that we have talked about all week, Vernon Davis:

I mean, he’s a test. He’s right up there with (Rob) Gronkowski, as far as the best tight ends in football. He just (has) the rare ability of a guy who can run 4.3, that can run by a corner. That’s difficult. It’s not just the safeties, to me. That task is put on everybody. We’re getting hands on the line of scrimmage, we’ll make sure we’re playing with good eyes, and understand where he is at all times.

He also talked about the Revis situation, in terms of how it affects the gameplan:

It won’t be anything major. I think the differences will be subtle. Again, there are certainly some calls that we’ll stay out of. Some of the calls we’ll make this week are more because of the nature of the opponent than necessarily our situation. The game plan changes each week. I’ve used this analogy before, we’re custom tailors. We’re making a suit each week and we have to build a plan based on two things, the opponent, what they do, and what do we have available from our perspective. That’s the challenge each week for us as coaches, is to build that plan to not only defend what they do, but to also have it favor our stronger players in matchups and protect our guys that might need protection.

First on Sparano, I like the concept that he takes, when talking about how to improve the running attack. More than any other sport, football is a team game. Executing a running attack takes all of the players on the field doing their jobs correctly. Everyone has to block better in order for the running game to succeed. Mark Sanchez will have to be more accurate as well, in order for the holes in the running game to start opening up. 50% completion percentage just isn’t going to cut it.

I still believe that the defensive gameplan is going to have some more obvious changes that Pettine is saying. Without Revis on the outside, it stands to reason that the Jets will run a lot more zone coverages, since the guys they have can cover, but nobody covers like Revis. It’s also harder to have all-out blitzes when the coverage on the outside is not as good. But, we will find out in just a little over 24 hours.