This past weekend the Jets got back on the right side of the win column and with Mark Sanchez now firmly re-ensconced (for now) in his starting role, what do the Jets need to do to keep their two game win momentum going?
Stout Defense — The Jets defense won’t be playing anymore abysmal offenses like the Jaguars or Cardinals, but the best unit they’ll face in the next three weeks is going to be Buffalo (18th), an offense that just lost Fred Jackson for the remainder of the season. The Jets defense is on a roll and feeling much more confident than they were earlier in the season, but even so the level of competition is going to get slightly better, so they’ll have to raise their game accordingly to keep their run offense in games.
Keep Sanchez’s Impact Marginal — The best run defense the Jets will face over the remaining three games is the Chargers (who rank 10th), so there is no need to let Mark Sanchez air it in at least two of the games. The Jets need to continue to give as many carries to their backfield players as possible.
Three Horse Race — Since the Jets will be running the ball much more than running it, they are going to need to get all their backs worked into the rotation to keep them all healthy and productive throughout the course of a game. Bilal Powell is duplicating Greene’s usefulness and might be edging him slightly when you adjust for their depth chart position, so the Jets need to continue to split the carries that Greene and Powell are seeing for best effectiveness. If Joe McKnight recovers from those migraines he dealt with last week, mix him into the lineup more as well and try to use him as a receiving target.
Seal the Deal — Other than the name of the best Seal cover band ever, the Jets need to GIT R DUN with one Mr. Braylon Edwards. With the Jets most likely over-committing to the run, defenses will be throwing eight players in the box with regularity. That sort of front will make it harder for the Jets to run and the only way to back teams out of that is by throwing some deep balls to receivers in single coverage. The Jets would be wise to get their two best players in single coverage looks as much as possible to help keep defenses honest. This means motion plays, swapping around where players line up, overloads … that sort of thing. Get Edwards in single coverage and let Mark Sanchez play pass and catch with a receiver he has built up trust with. Make the deal this week and Edwards should be more in a groove by next week when it will matter more against San Diego.