Week 4 Jets Report Card
By Alan Schechter
Sept. 30, 2012; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan on the sidelines during the second quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE
Time for this week’s report card, Jets fans. I am sure you already know this, but the grades aren’t pretty. Nobody will be making the Honor Society with these grades, that’s for sure. Here we go:
Mark Sanchez was awful yesterday, and weill deserving of a D. He marked(no pun intended) his third consecutive game where he completed under 50% of his passes, going 13-29 for 103 yards and 1 INT. That INT, for anyone who forgot, was on a screen pass. Yes, the ball was tipped, but a screen pass is a pretty basic play where you NEVER see an INT. Sanchez did not get a lot of help from his wide receivers down the field all day, but he was far too erratic with his passes. He just was not sharp. Add to that, a fumble he gave up, and it adds to a really bad day.
Tim Tebow did throw his first pass, and completed it for nine yards. There was that.
Not to hard to understand that one, the running backs added nothing to the football game. Shonn Greene ran the ball 11 times for 34 yards. Everyone wanted to see Bilal Powell, well, he contributed 4 carries for a whopping 11 yards. Other than the one pass, guess what? Tebow ran the football when he was in, and the 49ers were ready for it, holding him to zero yards on 2 attempts. Nothing short of pathetic.
RECEIVERS AND TIGHT ENDS:C-
These guys did not get open down the field at any point during the game. The only receiver that averaged more than 10 yards per reception was none other than Chaz Schilens, with 3 catches for 45 yards. They were not helped by Mark Sanchez’s inaccurate throws, but these guys left receptions out on the field as well. Patrick Turner welcomed himself back to the team with a dropped pass, for example. The sacks that Mark took, primarily, were coverage sacks, where yes, he could have thrown the ball somewhere, but the big question was where to? Nobody was open. The only other bright spot for me was Jeff Cumberland, who seemed to be an improving replacement for Dustin Keller with his four catches. Other than that, ugh!
The offensive line wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t great either. For the most part, they gave Mark Sanchez a pocket to throw from that was solid. When Mark got sacked, he either held the ball too long, had nobody open, or a combination of both. In terms of the passing game, the offensive line held up its end of the bargain, for the most part.
In the running game, that’s a different story. Yes, the running backs have looked putrid. But, they need to have holes to run through, and the line is not creating them. They don’t have running backs like Barry Sanders, that can make something out of nothing. They need to fire out on their blocks, knock somebody down, and give the Jets’ running backs somewhere to run. They are not doing that.
Defense and special teams on the next page.
Aug 15, 2012; Cortland, NY, USA; New York Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine talks with the defensive unit during training camp at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-US PRESSWIRE
It seemed appropriate to head this section with a picture of Mike Pettine, because this game was an epic failure for the defense as a whole. Let’s start with defensive line. They were awful. The defense gave up 245 yards on the ground. 245. Frank Gore and company averaged 5.6 yards per carry. How awful is that? Does that sound like an “elite” defense to any of you? It sure doesn’t sound like one to me. This defensive line is not getting off the blocks at all, nor are they making tackles. The 49ers offensive line took them out, with relative ease.
They didn’t get to the quarterback either. No pressure. The one bright spot was finally hearing the name of Quinton Coples, who made a stop for a loss.
Bryan Thomas and Calvin Pace did record back to back sacks, there was that. Most of us didn’t think that Calvin Pace had a pulse anymore, so it was nice to hear his name called at some point other than announcing the starting lineups.
Other than that, a whole lot of arm tackling was going on, which is just not going to cut it. Defensive systems are complex, but the idea is fairly simple, tackle the guy with the football. Don’t reach out with your arm and swipe, put both your mitts on the guy, wrap him up, and bring him to the ground. That’s it. Until this group starts doing that, they won’t even approach the word, “elite.
The group clearly missed their main squeeze, Darrelle Revis. Although Kyle Wilson only allowed 2 receptions, that was more on Alex Smith than Kyle Wilson’s stellar coverage. Wilson was beaten like a drum pretty much all game long. You saw nothing but receivers running right past him.
And as a whole, the opposing quarterback went 12-21. They allowed him to complete his short, economical throws. Not a good day.
The only bright spot on the day was punter Robert Malone. He had a terrific game, dropping punts inside the twenty, and leaving punts so high in the air that nobody could return them. The 49ers averaged 10 yards per punt return, which was in large part due to the excellent hang time achieved by Malone.
They did nothing else exciting to earn an A, a solid B.
There you have it, the Week 4 report card. Hopefully, we can give out better grades next Tuesday morning.