Opinion: Aaron Maybin’s Lack of Snaps Indicate Other Problems for Jets

Brian Bassett , TheJetsBlog.com

 

This morning on ESPN New York , Rich Cimini noted that Aaron Maybin, he who Many Good Things were expected of this season, only saw two defensive snaps in the game against the Niners last weekend.

What gives?

We really like Maybin, but one of the biggest concerns with his game last year for the Jets was that he was great when given a narrow role; get the passer.  We noted after Sunday’s game that Maybin has only one tackle so far this season … and knew his stat line was indicative of much larger concerns for this team.

With the way the Jets use him, Maybin’s snaps are, borrowing an economic term, a lagging indicator of what’s going on with the unit.  Now we’re starting to see that once things start to get unbalanced elsewhere – how badly they go off course for everything.

With the Jets needing more of a shot in the arm in terms of rushing the passer this past offseason, we wrote at length about how the Jets needed to find a way to get Aaron Maybin more snaps.

Doing so was contingent on two things:

  1. The assumption that the Jets were going to stay stout against the run.
  2. The coaching staff working with Maybin becoming a better player against the run

The first point has been ripped to pieces so far this year.  Mo had a great game against the run and Coples had some good moments last weekend and doubtless is still learning.  While the personnel isn’t much different than it was a year ago, the team can’t seem to stop the run as a unit.

Since the beat seems overly concerned with “The Tebow Of It All”, what’s gotten no attention is just how much pain with which Sione Po’uha might or might not be playing.  Bent mentioned it in his BGA post yesterday:

For the second straight game, Sione Po’uha had a rough afternoon. [...] You have to wonder how much of this is attributable to his back injury and when will matters improve, if ever?

Without the ability to stop the run then there’s never the right situation to let Maybin pin his ears back and get after the passer.  Which leads us to the second point … has Maybin made no progress against the run in the last year?  Leading up to the Niners game the coaches talked about gap control, shedding blocks and making good tackles.  Even with the emphasis on that this past week, it didn’t happen.  The Niners were a far superior team, but as Rex Ryan noted yesterday on The Michael Kay Show, the team missed seventeen tackles during the game, Ryan cited that as the most since he’s come to the Jets.  Either the Jets don’t want to tackle the ballcarrier or they are incapable of it … neither is good.

So what’s the concern about Maybin?  That he will get blown off the point of attack because of his size?  That he will miss tackles?

Umm … excuse my smartassery, but how can that be any worse than what we’re already seeing?

If anything he’ll do it with far better speed than the other linebackers seem capable of doing the same thing.

The coaches might not feel all that confident in his abilities if he’s seeing such little time on the field … but at this point … what’s the difference?

Rolling whoever else out there in his place doesn’t seem to be working, so how can putting a human missile like Maybin into the situation be any worse than what we’ve already seen?  The Jets gameplan is a scarred battlefield … what’s one more crater?