For the final time in the regular season, the New York Jets visited the Black Hole at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, and they lost to the Oakland Raiders 45-20.
Given the way the game turned out in the second half, the New York Jets were probably not going to defeat the Oakland Raiders, but the special teams unit definitely swung momentum to the Raiders favor at the end of the first half. After having a good kickoff return in the first half, Kalif Raymond had a game-defining muffed punt to end the half.
The Jets punt returner muffed a punt which set up the Raiders at the Jets 4-yard line. The Raiders would convert that drive into a touchdown on one play and go into halftime with a 21-10 lead, instead of the Jets potentially closing within one point or taking the lead themselves into halftime.
Unfortunately for Raymond, that will be one of the game’s defining moment. The special teams unit actually had a good day other than that muffed punt.
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Punter Lachlan Edwards had a good day. He’s improving steadily every week as he pinned the Raiders twice inside their own 20-yard line, and that’s great. The best part of both punts is they were unreturnable.
Kicker Chandler Catanzaro keeps showing the fans why, despite what seemed to be a close call at kicker, the coaches chose him over Ross Martin. He made both PATs and both field goals with a long of 46.
Raymond actually did a decent job on punt and kickoff returns, besides the muffed punt. Unfortunately for him, though, the muff probably cost him the job. A player cannot do that in such a critical situation.
It’s a learning situation for Raymond, and maybe he’ll get another shot down the road. Unfortunately, it’s a huge red mark on an otherwise decent game for the special teams unit.