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Jets vs. Saints: Top 5 takeaways from Week 15 matchup

NEW ORLEANS, LA - DECEMBER 17: Quarterback Bryce Petty #9 of the New York Jets hands the ball to running back Bilal Powell #29 during the second half of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA - DECEMBER 17: Quarterback Bryce Petty #9 of the New York Jets hands the ball to running back Bilal Powell #29 during the second half of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
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NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Quarterback Bryce Petty #9 of the New York Jets hands the ball to running back Bilal Powell #29 during the second half of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Quarterback Bryce Petty #9 of the New York Jets hands the ball to running back Bilal Powell #29 during the second half of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

The New York Jets are now 5-9 after a loss in Week 15. Here are the top five takeaways from their Week 15 matchup against the New Orleans Saints.

In their Week 15 matchup against the New Orleans Saints, the New York Jets played sub par. They went into the Mercedes-Benz Superdome and fought hard but were beaten by the Saints to the final score of 31-19. From the opening kickoff and to the end of the game, the Jets needed to win in order to keep their very slim playoff chances alive.

Looking at the overall performance of the Jets, the costly penalties and not cashing in on turnovers defined the game. The Jets offense continued its struggles and made the defense stay on the field longer.

With the loss, the Jets are now 5-9 and have been officially eliminated from playoff contention. They will look to play spoiler these final two games and prepare for the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 16. In this game, there were many mistakes that as a fan you just continue to get frustrated.

Now, let’s take a deeper look and break down the top five takeaways from this Week 15 matchup.

Next: 5. Offense struggles to put up points

NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Wide receiver Robby Anderson #11 of the New York Jets is tackled by linebacker Michael Mauti #56 of the New Orleans Saints during the first half of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Wide receiver Robby Anderson #11 of the New York Jets is tackled by linebacker Michael Mauti #56 of the New Orleans Saints during the first half of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

5. Offense struggles to put up points

Unlike last week, the Jets offense was unable to maintain long drives and score points when it mattered the most. Robby Anderson, Jermaine Kearse, and Austin Seferian-Jenkins were the culprits this time around as they couldn’t get any consistency in their efforts to keep the chains moving.

The Jets established 294 yards of total offense which is a stat you don’t want to see. The offense had multiple penalties in the game and four of the eight were on the offensive side of the football. They didn’t even cash in on the turnovers the defense forced which is something you need to do. The red zone execution was better this week as they went 2 for 4.

Once again, the playcalling wasn’t mixed up which is frustrating to see because of how it has been these past two weeks. If they applied different plays maybe they could have something going and be on the field longer. The offense didn’t stay on the field long enough to give the defense a rest. The offense was only able to stay on the field for 30 minutes and 50 seconds. They also had two costly turnovers.

Next: 4. Defense line has one of its best games in a long time

NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Leonard Williams #92 of the New York Jets pressures Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints during the first half of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Leonard Williams #92 of the New York Jets pressures Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints during the first half of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

4. Defense line has one of its best games in a long time

After struggling most of the season, the Jets defense stepped up in a big way. They were able to make their presence known throughout the game. They were able to make key defensive stops and looked well prepared for this tough matchup. Coming into this game, the Jets were facing the best offensive team in the league.

They were able to contain Drew Brees for the second half but they just tired out as it got later on in the game. When they needed to capitalize, they came up short.

Starting the second half, the defense improved as the game went on and made adjustments which were very impressive. They stepped up and delivered a solid performance and it showed that they fought hard and contained the offense of the Saints for how long they could.

The one quarterback sack caused the Saints drive to be stalled. They finally showed why they could be a very good defense by the way they played on Sunday. The secondary and frontline combined for two forced fumbles and one interception which is a huge stat in any game.

Next: 3. Secondary struggles once again

3. Secondary struggles once again

Just like how it has been all season, the Jets had a mediocre performance when it came to their defensive secondary which has been one of their biggest problems. Four costly penalties and many missed coverages allowed the Saints receivers to get open. Head coach Todd Bowles can only do so much in preparing them so they can’t continue these foolish penalties.

Clearly, the secondary of the Jets has major work still ahead of them. They need to fix these issues if they’re to make key defensive stops. If they don’t fix these issues they have then opposing quarterbacks will continue to pick them apart for these final two games of the season.

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Obviously, it will take more time for the secondary to work as a cohesive unit, but yet again they lack in the fundamentals of coverage, sticking to assignments, and executing. They need to work on their footwork and their hand use with an emphasis on communicating with one another. When it matters the most, the secondary continues to give up too many big plays which the Saints took advantage of in the latter part of the game. Even though they got beat on certain passes, they were able to force two fumbles but overall, struggled heavily.

Next: 2. Offensive line struggles once again

2. Offensive line struggles once again

The weakest part of the team continues to be exposed as the offensive line struggled once again. Sunday showed big time as the offensive line couldn’t get consistent penetration to drive back opposing defenders. They went up against a top 20 defense in the league and simply were overwhelmed throughout Sunday’s loss.

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They aren’t communicating who needs to block and when a blitz is happening. The offensive line continues to be a huge problem as it’s easily one of the top priorities heading into the upcoming offseason.

The inexperienced line and whomever the quarterback is could get hurt very easily. Bryce Petty was the victim as he struggled with getting anything done consistently.

They need to get it together before they eventually get another quarterback hurt. Hopefully, they address this issue in the upcoming draft or in free agency by bolstering the offensive line tremendously.

Next: 1. Bryce Petty struggles in his first start

NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Quarterback Bryce Petty #9 of the New York Jets throws the ball during the first half of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA – DECEMBER 17: Quarterback Bryce Petty #9 of the New York Jets throws the ball during the first half of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 17, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

1. Bryce Petty struggles in his first start

In his first start since last season, Bryce Petty had a subpar performance as he threw two costly interceptions. Even from last season he continues to struggle in his throws and making quick decisions on the field.

Petty is hoping to have a job next season so he needs to spark and have a better performance next week against the Chargers. Like how he did last season, he continued to force throws into double coverage. He didn’t use his check downs and didn’t use his ability to scramble and create some type of play when needed to.

It is time for the Jets to let Petty air it out more and at least take some shots downfield. These final two games are his auditions in seeing what type of player Petty is. If it is not any better next week then maybe for the final game they should put in Christian Hackenberg to see what he has got.

Must Read: 5 Jets that lost the game against Saints

Petty has a very strong arm and would make this offense better if he is given the chance to throw the football. Petty has to a lot more work to do if he is going to have a job next year with any team in the NFL so this lackluster performance has dropped his overall value to both the Jets and other teams watching.

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