BGA: Receivers – Catching flak

After his not-so-wise words earlier in the week, Santonio Holmes had a disappointing performance highlighted by an awful drop on his first target of the game.

I tend to think his comments – which many have acknowledged were taken out of context – were overblown before the game and will be blown up even more after the game. The Panthers secondary didn’t play that well, because there were Jets receivers open pretty regularly and a better quarterback likely would have been able to punish them. Though they say they were motivated, I’m pretty sure Captain Munnerlyn didn’t need to be any more fired up than usual to have intercepted that pass which was thrown right to him. In truth, if the main outcome of the comments was that the Panthers played more physically, this actually benefited the Jets in some cases, because they drew a couple of penalties that led to first downs, although the officials missed one on a throw to Holmes in the end zone. It also led to the 15-yard penalty after the pick six and perhaps even to some of the over-aggressiveness that led to Cumberland and Hakim being open downfield on plays that the Jets couldn’t capitalize upon.

The biggest disappointment is that they couldn’t get more from Holmes’ matchup with rookie Melvin White. Holmes schooled him several times on routes, but only caught two passes and drew one penalty in nine targets, as Smith threw behind him twice. Maybe a healthy Holmes would have been able to adjust to those passes in mid-air but he was only able to get his fingertips on one hand to the ball. Ultimately, I wouldn’t attribute the ineffectiveness of the passing offense to how well this suddenly motivated (like they wouldn’t have been anyway with a division title up for grabs) secondary played. The Jets just don’t have a good passing game this year.

Despite this, whether they were taken out of context or not, it’s never a good idea to poke the bear and the outcome is pretty humbling for Holmes. The fact that some teammates have been commenting that it wasn’t exactly helpful is reminiscent of the reaction to Kerry Rhodes doing something similar against the Dolphins in 2009, shortly after which he fell completely out of favor.

With the connection to Holmes not working, you’d have expected the Jets to lean on Jeremy Kerley and Kellen Winslow, but neither of them had a reception until the last drive. Kerley did almost make a diving catch on one play and at least was able to draw a holding penalty. I have to give credit to Quintin Mikell who was the first guy I’ve seen that’s been able to stay with Kerley on the whip route which has been a go-to play for the Jets this year. Smith was rolling out and had to throw the ball away with that option covered. Kerley did have one missed block.

Winslow was only in for 17 snaps and hasn’t played 20 snaps in a game since he was suspended in week five. Prior to that, he had been averaging 42 snaps per game. I doubt this is an extension of limiting his “pitch count” in games as well as practice. It probably just means that they don’t see him as part of the future. On one play, he lined up in the backfield and stayed in to pass block, which has been a rarity this year (entering the game, just eight times all season and only twice since week three). Two players came off the edge and he failed to block either of them.

David Nelson was a bright spot with three catches for 44 yards, including two first downs. He also contributed a good downfield block and might have had another catch over by the sideline but the pass led him out of bounds. Has Nelson established himself as a keeper?

Jeff Cumberland led the Jets with 50 yards on three catches, which comprised a touchdown reception, an eight yard gain on a play where he broke a tackle in the backfield and a 35-yard catch and run. However, his blocking continues to be inconsistent. He did have some good blocks, but there were a series of plays where he missed or did not sustain his block to lead to a run being stuffed. It almost seemed like the Jets’ efforts to ensure that the success or failure of a play didn’t hinge on a Brian Winters block left Cumberland exposed to those situations instead.

I’m not really impressed with Zach Sudfeld’s blocking either, so I’m not sure he is likely to emerge as a potential Cumberland replacement. He let Greg Hardy get off his block to stuff a second and one run by Chris Ivory in the fourth quarter that should have been an easy first down.

Greg Salas played briefly but wasn’t targeted. However, debutante Saalim Hakim showed some flashes, breaking a tackle to gain eight on an end around and beating his man deep on a play where Smith missed him.


Next up…onto the defense – could Wilkerson bounce back from his quiet game last week?




19 comments
metjetnet
metjetnet

(miketaliaferro) Receivers need a complete overhaul. Tone & Winslow are gone; Nelson has indeed earned a spot, most likely as 4th WR, w/Hill as 5th WR. Kerley stays as a valuable Slot Receiver, which leaves Idzik looking for both a 1 & a 2 WR of studly, flyboy proportions. Overall, this roster is a slightly more talented, more cohesive version of the Pop Warner team Tanny put on the field last year. We actually have no idea WHAT kind of coach Rex is, since this roster has barely rivaled the check-out personnel of a standard Piggly-Wiggly. Give Rex a damned team!!! & see what he's capable of doing... a la Joe Torre, mgr, Mets vs. Joe Torre, mgr, Yankees.

SackDance99
SackDance99

Holmes also had a bad drop on a perfectly thrown out pattern and should've been able to adjust on the ball in the endzone.  Holmes and Nelson had no training camp time with Geno  and with a great route runner like Holmes, chemistry is everything.  Nelson is a big target, so he's just easier to throw to, Holmes needs balls placed at specific locations to be most effective and he and Geno are not on the same page.  Sure, a veteran QB could get more out of Holmes, but he looks like he's not competing for balls as hard as he was earlier in the season.  I don't blame him, it must be frustrating for him, but the Geno-Tone marriage hasn't been a happy one.

t__k
t__k

I wouldn't want Holmes on the team even if he played for free.  His production on the field doesn't make up for the headache off it.  He's either hurt or saying something stupid or both.  Tired of his act. 

djf1
djf1

I'm ok with keeping Nelson.  beyond that, are we only keeping Kerley and Hill?  None of out TEs are impressing.

a57se
a57se

Bent it is a shame a great gameplan like the Jets had yesterday goes down the tubes because our QB can't make routine throws on target and on time......


a57se
a57se

B-b-but it's the Pieces Bent!

a57se
a57se

@SackDance99 

After three years of Sanchez now he gets Geno...... gotta svck for any WR.

bharper42
bharper42

@djf1 


why would you keep hill?  Nelson is a 5 and kerley if it was my team is a 3 at best or 4.  it just goes to show how bad our offense is.


regression at every turn except for ivory. 


another one on rex imo.

djf1
djf1

@a57se though if you think about, we win if you subtract just that one INT and the blocked punt (which wasn't on Geno). I expected a lot worse.


t__k
t__k

@a57se@SackDance99 He's been stuck with some bad QB's but he's been hurt too.  The bottom line is Holmes just doesn't "get" it.  Whether some of his comments get taken out of context or not, there's always an issue with him.  He's been saying stupid sheet since he's been here and now he's not making plays to back it up.  

t__k
t__k

@a57se "I'm an eight year vet, I wouldn't regret anything" 

a57se
a57se

@djf1@a57se 

Some of us felt that the Jets would be competitive in that game but would blow it in the end......pretty much what happened.

a57se
a57se

@t__k@a57se@SackDance99 

The ironic part is that if Rothlisberger wasn't a serial rapist, Holmes would probably have stayed in Pittsburgh.

djf1
djf1

@a57se@djf1 you were a lot more optimistic than I was, then. :)

Bent
Bent

@BILLY Honestly, Kerley could be a hall of famer if he played 10 years with a guy like Brady.

BILLY
BILLY

@jetfuel I wonder if Brady would mind Kerley as his top WR.