Tuesday, September 29, 2015

N.Y. Jets: Cockpit Troubles Ground Flight Three in East Rutherford

From the desk of:  WALT MICHAELS' REVENGE


Week Four
New York Jets
Miami Dolphins
Across the Pond

New York Jets: Ponderous loss against Philadelphia was more revealing than distressing.

If we learned anything over the first three weeks, it's the Jets will look good when they win, and look awful when they lose.

Fans got a refresher as to why Ryan Fitzpatrick no longer plays for the Bengals, Bills, Titans, or Texans.  The more you ask him to throw, the more sure (not likely, but sure) he is to get picked off.

No, Chris Ivory did not play, which otherwise altered the original plan.  But 58 pass attempts is just begging for trouble, and as expected Fitzpatrick delivered three 3 INTs.  One pick was inexcusable, while the other 2 came on tipped passes but were no less distressing.  He's now been intercepted 5 times this season, and has thrown at least one in each of the Jets first three games.

Yet, what transpired in the 1st half really had little to do with Ryan Fitzpatrick, per se..  The defense, special teams, and Brandon Marshall were busy finding ways to lose instead.

  • 1st QTR - The defense yielded an 11-play drive (field goal) on the Eagles' first possession of the game.
  • 2nd QTR - Special teams allowed a punt return touch down; the defense yielded another 8-play 75 yard drive for a touchdown; then came Brandon Marshall's ill advised attempted lateral and fumble, that eventually resulted in another 6-points the other way.

Total damage: the Jets went into their locker room trailing 24-7 at halftime.

With the Jets clearly in catch-up mode, all three interceptions came in the 2nd half.  Unlike Brandon Marshall's 2nd quarter gaffe, Ryan's turnovers didn't necessarily translate into Philadelphia points, but instead repeatedly killed the Jets chances at mounting a comeback.

Minus Chris Ivory, that seemingly became an untenable situation.  In fact, without Ivory the Jets punted on their first six possessions of the game, while Bilal Powell failed to provide a sufficient supportive effort throughout.  He only rushed 10 times for 31 yards, but again, perhaps much of that had to do with playing catch-up football.

Regardless, the point was well made.  The Jets offense lacked field management without Chris Ivory on the field.

The defense otherwise regrouped and held Philadelphia scoreless in the second half.  They perhaps induced most of Sam Bradford's overall inefficiency.  The Jets sacked him once, and got 6 other hits. Ryan Mathews, however, rushed the ball 25 times for 108-yards.

Comparatively though, the Jets held on to the ball longer and gained more net yardage.  And despite missing Ivory, turnovers arguably doomed Flight Three, with Brandon Marshall's fumble proving most costly.

This is a game the Jets literally gave away.  If generosity indeed got the better of them, better they helped a non-division, and non-conference team.

Flight #4 takes off this week for London, where the Jets will play against their jolly division rivals Miami Dolphins.

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