Sep 7, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Chris Johnson (21) celebrates his touchdown against the Oakland Raiders with New York Jets guard Brian Winters (67) during the second quarter of a game at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
More from Jets News
- NY Jets should target TE Hunter Henry in free agency
- NY Jets: Why the team should target cornerback Shaquill Griffin
- NY Jets reportedly non-tendering linebacker Harvey Langi
- NY Jets: Why the team should not cut Jamison Crowder
- NY Jets should try to sign Kenny Golladay in free agency
The Jets began their season with a victory over the Oakland Raiders 19-14. The offense, defense and special teams all played well but key mistakes almost short circuited what was otherwise a dominant day. How did it play out? Here is the good, the bad and the ugly:
1) Geno Smith – Smith was in control of the offense and completed 82% of his passes. 82%. He finished 23/28 for 221 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Smith also ran 8 times for 40 yards with a lost fumble. The Jets had three drives of over 10 plays and Smith was able to get the offense into a rhythm using no huddle a lot more than last year. They also mixed the run and the pass well. Smith’s footwork and reads were on target and he looks like a better quarterback than last year. This was not a perfect game for him by any stretch as we will see in later sections.
2) The offense as a whole – The Jets rolled up 402 yards of total offense including 212 on the ground. Chris Ivory had 10 rushes for 102 yards, including a 71 yard touchdown run that proved to be the difference in the game. Chris Johnson had 12 carries for 65 yards and five catches for 23 yards and a touchdown. Johnson had a screen that went for 12 yards and a touchdown on a five yard shovel pass. Smith found seven receivers including 5 catches for 74 yards for Eric Decker, 4 for 50 yards for Cumberland, 5 for 38 for Kerley and 2 for 7 yards for Amaro.
3) The “beleaguered” secondary – Antonio Allen had a terrific day allowing very few completions, one on a perfect back shoulder throw to Streater and the other a short 3rd down completion that he kept from turning into a first down, all while posting five tackles. Calvin Pryor played a lot of deep middle and the result was the Raiders only completing one deep ball, late in the game when the result had pretty much been decided. Darrin Walls played well in coverage with the exception of the jump ball he lost to James Jones in the final two minutes. Even Kyle Wilson made a play or two. Next week there is a chance that Dee Milliner might return and not a moment to soon because Green Bay’s passing attack is a lot better than Oakland’s.
4) The defense slowly chokes out Oakland – The Jets held the Raiders to 158 yards and most of that was when the Jets were in prevent defense on the Raiders’ final drive. After deciding to blitz heavily for the 1st quarter and a half the Jets decided to get pressure from upfront and play coverage and the result was a completely ineffective Derek Carr. The Jets had the Raiders held to under 100 yards mid-way through the 4th quarter thanks to the front 7 completely stuffing the run. The Raiders finished with 14 carries for 26 yards and even that wasn’t indicative of how dominant the Jets’ defensive front was. The Jets changed fronts and looks constantly leading to confusion on Carr’s mind and play. Pressure from Richardson, Wilkerson, Coples, Pace, Babin and Landry was pretty constant and they seemed to take personal offense to ex-Jet Austin Howard’s comment that the Raiders could push the Jets around. Next week they will have to be as dominant as this week as Brian Bulaga, Green Bay’s star left tackle, is out, they have a rookie center and their right tackle played terribly. The only way the Jets will be able to disrupt Aaron Rodgers will be with quick pressure. They should be able to pin their ears back because Packers’ running back Eddie Lacy is out with a concussion.
5) Ryan Quigley punts well – Quigley pinned the Raiders inside their own 15 twice. Once he angled one out of bounds at the Oakland 13 and the second the Raider returner fair caught his punt at the five yard line. Also Saalim Hakim’s return potential paid off as he opened the game with a 44 yard return that set up a Jets drive for a field goal. Coordinator Thomas McGaughey’s special teams in general had a good day and it was refreshing considering how bad Ben Kotwicka’s unit was last season.
Dec 8, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Chris Ivory (33) celebrates with teammates Austin Howard (77) and Willie Colon (66) after scoring on a 15-yard touchdown run against the Oakland Raiders at MetLife Stadium. The Jets defeated the Raiders 37-27 Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
1) Despite dominating the Jets could only put up 19 points – The Jets had trouble finishing drives on Sunday. Their first drive that ended with a field goal was derailed by a holding call on Willie Colon. They almost lost the field goal when D’Brickashaw Ferguson was called for holding on the field goal attempt. The next possession Charles Woodson made a great, diving catch to intercept a Geno Smith pass to Eric Decker. Smith locked on a bit but it was mainly a great play by Woodson. That led to a Raider touchdown. The drive after the Jets drove all the way to the Raider 4 when Geno Smith fumbled on a scramble. The ball wasn’t secured and it got knocked out by Sio Moore. The 1st drive of the 2nd half came to an end after an offensive pass interference penalty against Eric Decker wiped out a 1st down catch that would have set the Jets up at the Raider 27. The drive after that was down to the Raider 12 before Smith was sacked and fumbled but recovered and the Jets were able to salvage a field goal from the drive. Later in the 4th quarter Smith had the Jets at the Raiders’ 20 before a 19 yard sack took the team out of field goal range altogether.
2) Penalties – The Jets finished with 11 penalties for 105 yards and continued to shoot themselves in the foot. They had two offsides penalties, a defensive holding (declined) and a pass interference call on defense. Willie Colon had a false start, a holding call and a face mask all by himself. The team needs to toe the line between aggressiveness and stupidity. It has crossed the line to the latter too often. The penalties cost the Jets points directly and cannot happen if they are going to continue to win going forward.
The Ugly – None (Now if they had lost the game the Bad section would have ended up in Ugly)
I saw a lot more good than bad. The defense was exceptional with the secondary stepping up and not being a disaster at all. Antonio Allen looks like not only can he be serviceable but he has a chance to be a good number 2 corner. The pass rush did its job. Even if they only had two sacks, the pressure was there and it made Carr uncomfortable and forced him into quicker decisions than he wanted to make. With Dee Milliner back Week 2 or Week 3 the team will be able to be even more flexible with their scheme and their personnel.
Offensively, Geno Smith was extremely accurate, in control of the offense and confident. He made a couple of mistakes but those can be corrected. The talent pool is much improved. Eric Decker and Chris Johnson added to Chris Johnson, Jeremy Kerley and Jeff Cumberland made the team multi-dimensional. As long as teams fear the pass they won’t stack the box against the run and that will let the Jets run game take over. 35 minutes of time of possession today is the blueprint for success. They need to eliminate mistakes and stick to the game plan and the Jets will win a good amount of games.