With the season falling apart, the Jets took the opportunity to get back on track as the out-of-contention Raiders headed East for the dreaded 10am PST kickoff.
A solid first half performance saw the Jets up 20-3, thanks to a special teams touchdown and a couple of effective but not especially pretty drives. The Raiders did narrow the gap a couple of times in the second half, but the Jets did well not to go into a shell on offense and pulled out the win to go 6-7 on the season.
While other results didn’t necessarily go the Jets’ way, it at least keeps them mathematically in contention which makes next week’s game interesting. Unfortunately, that’s probably the toughest game in the second half of the season, although the Panthers did get blown out by the Saints (a team the Jets beat a few months ago) last night. They couldn’t…could they? To read more of this story, click here
During the season, Bent’s Game Analysis charts games for some of the Jets’ upcoming opponents, enabling a break down of what to watch out for on gameday…
The struggling Raiders, behind the 8-ball all season because so much of their salary cap is tied up in dead money, head to the East Coast for an early game against their fellow strugglers the New York Jets. That’s historically tough for West Coast teams, but the Raiders do have the benefit of a long week to prepare and get adjusted to the early start, following their loss to the Cowboys on Thanksgiving.
After the jump, I break down the positional groupings (BGA-style!) to try and highlight what the Jets need to look out for. To read more of this story, click here
Welcome to BGA Extra, where I draw a line under the previous weekend’s game by responding to your questions from Bent’s Game Analysis during the week. After the jump, I respond to your questions about the loss to the Dolphins. If you would like your questions answered in future, remember to read my BGA game breakdowns every Monday and leave your question in the comments section. To read more of this story, click here
The Jets announced that they have signed free agent return specialist Darius Reynaud to their active roster to replace the injured Josh Cribbs. Jets fans might not know much about Reynaud, so I’ve been reviewing footage from the past few seasons to try and assess what he brings to the table.
The 28-year old Reynaud is a 5’9″ and 201-pound return specialist who was an undrafted free agent wide receiver in 2008 out of West Virginia. However, since entering the league, he’s mainly been used as a running back whenever he has played on offense. He’s best known as a kick returner and has three career touchdowns, all of them in 2012, when he led the NFL in combined kick and punt return yards and was second in the league for yards per touch.
After the jump, a review of Reynaud’s career and observations from having looked at film from the last few seasons to evaluate some of his strengths and weaknesses.
To read more of this story, click here
That just about does it for this week’s BGA, a thoroughly depressing review of a thoroughly depressing game that makes for a thoroughly depressing read, I’m sure. (Sorry about that).
I’d like to close with a reminder to the Jets’ decision makers (whoever they may be):
We’re here every week, blogging about and supporting the team we love whether we attend the game or do so from home or a bar.
Losing is embarrassing and it sucks, especially to a hated rival like the Miami Dolphins in such a pathetic fashion. If you’re not even going to do whatever it takes to win every week, it better pay off down the road and fast because Jets fans are an impatient bunch that aren’t going to tolerate that for too long.
We hope you are continuing to enjoy the new BGA format. There are links to each BGA article or the option to read the offensive and/or defensive BGA in full after the jump. To read more of this story, click here
Yes, the offense has been bad, but the special teams units have been almost as bad and that’s perhaps not getting the attention it should.
After an awful performance last week, this week was almost as bad, as Marcus Thigpen had a 25-yard punt return and a 50-yard kickoff return. Antonio Allen, Jaiquawn Jarrett, Darrin Walls and Jermaine Cunningham all missed tackles on one return. It could have been worse, but Darrin Walls and Ellis Lankster each made terrific open-field tackles with the second wave nowhere in sight on two punts. Furthermore, the Jets almost had two punts blocked and committed a pre-snap penalty.
One major issue has to be personnel. Starters Dawan Landry (who actually made a good tackle on the opening kickoff) and David Harris both had to play this week, as the Jets have lost several special teams contributors in recent weeks (including Troy Davis, Ricky Sapp, Rontez Miles, Konrad Reuland – and Josh Cribbs during the game). They’ve also had to move Caleb Schlauderaff into the wedge blocker role previously occupied by Reuland. Harris was playing left tackle on the punt unit which is where the pressure came from on one of the near blocks. It looked like the pre-snap penalty was down to him too.
To read more of this story, click here
The first half of this game (which you’ll recall I said was “where all the damage was done” despite the close scoreline) exposed the unexpected downside of the Ed Reed move (not just the decision to sign him but also to make him a full-time player right off the bat).
Dawan Landry was never going to be benched because he’s back there coordinating the secondary. Obviously this has meant that Antonio Allen, who was playing really well before Reed arrive, was the one to lose playing time. However, the under-appreciated aspect in all this is the fact that Landry’s role has changed from a deep safety to more of an in-the-box safety.
Of course, it’s never as simple as that with the Jets, whose safeties were often interchangeable before Reed’s arrival. However, Landry had been playing the deep safety role for the most part and doing a solid job. It’s the same role that Yeremiah Bell played last year and while Landry might not have the athleticism he once did (or that of his brother), his skill-set compares favorably to someone like Bell. The media suggested all off-season that Landry was an in-the-box safety who would be miscast in a free safety role, but this was based on the misconception that “free safety” equates to coverage safety, whereas in actual fact, the player closer to the line of scrimmage is the one who will be in more direct man-to-man matchups. The free safety role is much more suitable for a veteran nearing the end of their career, especially on a team that doesn’t really employ a roaming center fielder.
At this stage of his career, moving Landry back into such an in-the-box role – which of course he played alongside Reed in Baltimore – simply exposes him to more man-to-man matchups and these were exploited three times in the first half yesterday to help extend drives, the first time Landry has given up more than two catches in direct coverage all year. The younger Antonio Allen is more suited to these situations due to his superior athleticism and coverage skills, but moving him into a situational role just means that Landry (who has to be out there) can be exploited in coverage. It also hasn’t helped Allen, who has given up three first down catches and dropped an interception in 25 snaps over the three games since Reed arrived. Prior to that, he’d only given up one catch on every 19.5 snaps, many of which weren’t first downs.
Essentially, by trying to accommodate Reed’s role, Ryan seems to have weakened a couple of other positions, which was the last thing an already-struggling secondary needed. To read more of this story, click here
I want to open up by talking about Demario Davis. I think we’re deep enough into his first season as a full time player to assess his game. While his speed has been a boost to a unit that was aging last year, he’s not the finished article yet and I’m interested to get your thoughts on whether he has the potential to be really good, or is he already at his ceiling?
Davis has been pretty good against the run and, although his nine missed tackles leads the team, that’s not too bad on a league-wide scale as 19 other inside linebackers around the NFL have at least as many as that. In coverage, he’s blown some assignments and been picked on a lot more than you might realize. He’s given up a completion on over 80% of his targets for a total of 470 yards. By contrast, Bart Scott, who we were told by the media was repeatedly exploited in coverage, never gave up more than 333 yards in a season with the Jets. I do think Davis is a pretty good blitzer, although the Jets haven’t been blitzing much recently, so he only has one pressure in the last five games (after racking up 11 in the first seven).
Yesterday’s game was a typical Davis performance. He was in on a couple of tackles near the line of scrimmage, including one in coverage, but was beaten for a couple of first downs and picked on a couple of screen plays that also went for first downs. He also had a costly missed tackle on the first touchdown. Last year, I remarked that Davis always seemed to be a step slow at the snap and that once he got more comfortable that would disappear and make him a more effective player. That’s been the case, but there are still times when he reacts a beat late and those are the occasions when he’s exploited.
To read more of this story, click here
Of all the head-scratching decisions that the Jets’ regime has made over the years, activating Santonio Holmes as a gametime decision, putting him in the starting lineup and then only using him on one other play all game has to be one of the most bewildering.
On the first play, Holmes ran a full-speed go-route and Geno Smith was sacked well before he could get a pass off due to Brian Winters getting beaten. Holmes re-appeared on a running play in the second quarter and hustled to make an attempted cut block on a play where Chris Ivory gained seven yards. You couldn’t criticize his effort on either play, so the only thing that makes any sense is that he must have shown displeasure at being removed from the game immediately after each one and they benched him for that reason. If that’s not the case, then it’s not like any of the other receivers had earned extra reps, so there is no obvious explanation other than the fact that he’s not really part of their plans, in which case, why start him? Why even continue to have him on the team?
Making this all the more baffling is the fact that Kellen Winslow only played 17 snaps. Winslow was probably their most efficient player, catching three passes on three targets. Again, I can understand why a player on a one-year deal might start to lose playing time as the team falls out of contention and gives more reps to the players it anticipates will be back next year, but that’s not exactly conducive to an ideal working environment.
Again, though, it’s a major departure from the end of last year, when guys like Yeremiah Bell, Bart Scott and Eric Smith who were never expected to return, were still getting major reps with younger options like Antonio Allen, Demario Davis and Josh Bush sitting out.
Are they not even trying to win any more? To read more of this story, click here
I was looking forward to writing this week’s offensive line review. I thought I’d done a pretty decent job so far and fared reasonably well last year. However, SNY just took on an intern and they’ve decided that he’s going to write the offensive line review this week and for the remainder of the season.
Sure, he’s young, very inexperienced, ill-prepared and with a rough-around-the-edges style. There may be teething troubles at first, but they’re expecting he’ll learn and improve on the job. After all, he could be the future of BGA!
(Don’t worry, none of that is true.)
I just hope that underlines the absurdity of the situation at left guard. The Jets offensive line was pretty good for the first four weeks and isn’t getting any better. Brian Winters is overmatched, torpedoing the whole unit and potentially killing his confidence in the process. To read more of this story, click here