Aug 24, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith (7) steps out of bounds to avoid a safety as he is pressured by New York Giants middle linebacker Mark Herzlich (58) in the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Munson/The Star-Ledger via USA TODAY Sports
This is a special Sunday Morning Quarterback, as I was at MetLife Stadium to watch it, thanks to our friends at the “Road To MetLife Stadium” preferred blogger program. They set me up with excellent seats on field level along the goal line. Thanks to Shane Arman and company for the opportunity.
Now let’s talk about the game.
The Jets won it, 24-21 in OT, bringing the Snoopy trophy over to our side. Yes, the trophy is very cute, but anyone who watched the game last night knows there is quite a bit to talk about.
It was Geno Smith’s time to shine, and did he have his moments? Sure he did. But he was very, very, inconsistent. He has a lot of talent, but he just isn’t ready to lead an NFL football team, not yet. His second drive of the game was excellent, ending with a TD pass to Ben Obomanu. However, he threw 3 interceptions on the night, 2 of them being particularly bad. The first one, Ryan Spadola got outmuscled for the ball, it happens. The second and third were not good at all. Bad decisions. He also needs to show more self-awareness, not stepping on the backline of the endzone. That comes with experience, knowing exactly where he is on the field in those situations.
Geno finished the game 16-30 passing for 199 yards, 1 TD and 3 INTs.
However, Geno Smith may have won the QB competition by default, pending the result of Mark Sanchez’s MRI. For some strange reason, Mark was in the ball game late. What the heck was Rex Ryan thinking about? Yes he needed reps, but why not in the third quarter? The second and third string defense was in the game for the Giants. These are the guys that are fighting for a spot on the roster, essentially fighting for their football lives.
They are going to be coming at the quarterback as hard as any starter, and likely harder. They brought it to Mark, and he left the game with a shoulder injury. As of the writing of this post, we don’t know the severity of the injury, we will bring more detail as soon as it becomes available.
Aug 24, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Hakeem Nicks (88) makes a one handed grab against New York Jets cornerback Kyle Wilson (20) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim O
On the defensive side of the ball, I came to a conclusion. We should start a cartoon here at the site, and call it “Captain PI!” The star would obviously be the guy to the left, Mr. Kyle Wilson. Just when you might have thought he was turning the corner, he played like he did last night. 4 pass interference penalties? Seriously? Kyle, what part of turn and look for the football, don’t you understand?
If you are going to just look at the wide receiver, you are going to get called for pass interference every single time. Maybe if Kyle spent less time wagging his finger and more working on technique, we wouldn’t be having this problem.
There were some highs, will talk about those on the next page.
Jul 31, 2013; Cortland, NY, USA; New York Jets center Dalton Freeman (right) blocks defensive tackle Damon Harrison (94) during training camp at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
Damon Harrison saw quite a bit of playing time last night, and he took advantage of it, leading the team with 7 tackles. He was all over the field, making his presence felt, especially on run defense. Other than the 84 yard run that opened the football game, the Jets’ defense did a good job against the run, and Damon was at the forefront. It was a coming out party for “Big Snacks”, and it couldn’t have happened to a better guy. I have a sneaky suspicion that there are plenty more tackles where that came from.
Another sign of things to come came from Sheldon Richardson. He was all over as well, recording a sack last night. He has some moves as a pass rusher, and will be quite the tandem with Muhammad Wilkerson. Add that to Damon, and Quinton Coples when he returns, and the Jets’ defensive line should be as lethal as any across the league.
It would be shocking if Ryan Spadola doesn’t make this team. I haven’t seen the breakdown of snaps yet, but Ryan had to be pretty high. He was on the field for much of the game, including time with the ones, and into the overtime. He was around long enough to catch a 70 yard pass and a 22 yard TD pass from Matt Simms. The team clearly trusts the young graduate of Lehigh, using him on special teams as well as on offense, and he rewarded that trust with 3 catches for 110 yards and the 1 TD. He is as close of a lock to make this team as I can remember.
Ben Obomanu and Stephen Hill had nice games, with 56 yards receiving a piece, although Stephen did lose a fumble. His hands have softened up, he will record many more catches in 2013, no question about it.
There is my take on the game. We will have more detail on Mark Sanchez as soon as it becomes available.
- “In the spirit of full-disclosure, I’ve partnered with MetLife as part of the Road to MetLife Stadium Preferred Blogger Program. Throughout the year I’ll be receiving special access to MetLife Stadium events and be conducting reader giveaways, with prizes provided by MetLife. However, no payment was given or expected for posting about the program, and as always, all opinions given here are fully my own. “