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Thread: My Post-game Thoughts and Analysis

  1. #1
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    My Post-game Thoughts and Analysis

    After a night off to think about the game, and re-watching the game this morning, I wanted to share some of my thoughts about last nightís game.
    Iíll start with the most important position on the field: quarterback. I thought Mark Sanchez looked great last night. It wasnít just the numbers that made me happy, although I would settle for him completing 85 percent of his passes during the regular season. All of Sanchezís passes hit his receivers right in stride, which is the best way to facilitate YAC. My favorite thing about his play last night though was the way Sanchez looked off his primary receivers a few times (2nd and 10 pass to Mason, the drop by Mulligan) and threw to his secondary targets.

    The pass to Mulligan made me particularly happy. The Jets run that bootleg play a ton, and it usually ends with a seven yard completion to Keller. When Sanchez is able to slow the game down and process his reads though, good things happen. Last year, he had TD passes to Santonio against the Bears and the Steelers in the AFCCG with that play, because he looked off the primary, short receiver, and was able to find a guy who was open deep. That was the same thing I saw last night. It also needs to be mentioned that he made a perfect throw to Mulligan while on the run. Just very good stuff all around. My only ďcomplaintĒ was that he rocketed his screen pass to Greene, but thatís easily fixable, and Greene managed to catch it.

    Have you ever seen the movie Face/Off? Do you remember the scene where Nicolas Cage is in prison and they make the prisoners wear massive robotic boots so they canít walk without a guard allowing them to? I think Vlad was wearing those boots last night. Other than that though, I wasnít unhappy with the play of the linemen who will actually make the team. Itís important to remember that in addition to blocking, Mangold is responsible for making all of the line calls, so itís not really a surprise that some calls were botched last night and rushers came in untouched. I donít expect to see that in the regular season.

    Iím very happy that the coaching staff appears committed to having Greene as the lead back. At this point, heís a much better ball-carrier than LT, and he deserves the carries, which should help keep LT fresh. I didnít think McKnight was as bad as many people here seem to think, but I was very impressed by Powell. I think it will be interesting to see who will be active on game days.

    Jeff Cumberland is good and heís going to see the field. I know that he was never thought of as a blocker, so I donít know if he will be able to line up on the line, or if they will just split him out in the slot, but the combination of size and speed that he showed me last night definitely made me take notice. Iím not too worried about Mulliganís drop, because he will almost never be targeted during the season.

    For those who play fantasy, I can say this with confidence: go get Santonio Holmes. Itís clear that he has a connection with Sanchez, and Sanchez will look for him in every situation. Holmes will lead this team in targets, and the way he runs slant patterns is almost indefensible.
    I was hoping to see a bit more from Kerley in the slot in the first quarter, but everything Iím reading from camp says that he has a connection with Sanchez, so I wonít read much into his quiet first quarter. I also think that Kerley will be an effective kick and punt returner, but I donít think he has the top-end speed to really make him a threat like Devin Hester, but I expect him to get good yardage.

    I was worried about losing Shaun Ellis and plugging Wilkerson in as the day 1 starter. Iím still a little worried about Wilkerson because he didnít show me much last night, but I think that Ropati Pitoitua is going to be seeing a lot of time, and he might even end up starting. Pitoitua is the biggest man Iíve ever seen and I think heís perfect for Rexís 3-4. Just by standing still, he automatically takes up two gaps. Iíve had a man-crush on him since 2009 when I saw him almost sack David Garrard by driving the OT eight yards into the backfield, and Iím glad heís finally healthy and ready to contribute.

    I was also happy with Kenrick Ellisís play. At times he got a little too high, but heís so big and strong that he was still able to occupy two blockers. Another thing that really stood out to me was that Ellis is not fat by any means. When you think of a 350 pound man, you donít assume that his frame can hold weight that easily, but Ellisís can. The last thing about Ellis that I loved was his hustle. He was all over the field, and on one screen pass, he ended up twenty-five yards downfield on the opposite sideline chasing down the running back. That was great to see.

    The linebackers didnít show me much, and I was hoping to see some flash ofÖ.something from Westerman, but I didnít really see anything. Hopefully he can do more next week. The linebackers were also victimized by bootlegs the whole game, but most of those players wonít make the team, and I expect Rex to get that fixed ASAP.

    The cornerbacks who will make the team looked very good, in my opinion. On one 3rd down play Schaub attempted a throw to the sideline but Wilson left almost no room for Schaub to fit the ball into. Itís certainly a small sample size, but Wilson looks improved from last year.

    The safeties did not look very good at all. I was having unpleasant flashbacks to the first half of last season as the safeties were caught ridiculously out of position. Brodney Pool played longer than most of the other first teamers (I guess heís not technically a first-teamer, but I canít see him not starting) but he really didnít do much either. Iím just hopeful that the safeties improve like they did last year.

    All in all, I was pretty happy with what I saw last night. I expect that Rex will address the problems with bootlegs, and I think that having Mangold play next week will lead to a marked improvement in the first team OLís play. My main hope is that Sanchez carries over his improved decision-making and accuracy into next week and the regular season, because if he can do that, this team could be special.

  2. #2
    [QUOTE=njherdfan;4105868]
    Have you ever seen the movie Face/Off? Do you remember the scene where Nicolas Cage is in prison and they make the prisoners wear massive robotic boots so they canít walk without a guard allowing them to? I think Vlad was wearing those boots last night.[/QUOTE]

    great read

    and let me add John Conner is going to make Shonn Greene this year. The dude is a bulldozer of a lead blocker.

  3. #3
    My quick take on Wilkerson. Remember he started with the first teamers, I got the sense that he was trying to adjust to the speed of the NFL game, seemed a step behind in most of what he was doing, but the talent and ability is clearly there. I think we will se a better performance from him next week with a game now under his belt.

  4. #4
    [QUOTE=bitonti;4105882]great read

    and let me add John Conner is going to make Shonn Greene this year. The dude is a bulldozer of a lead blocker.[/QUOTE]


    [URL="http://twitter.com/#!/search?q=%23Jets"]#Jets[/URL][COLOR=#444444] Shonn Greene ran behind 3 [/COLOR][URL="http://twitter.com/JCONNER38"]@JCONNER38[/URL][COLOR=#444444] blocks last night. Result: Gains of 5, 19 & 7 yards. Could be special tandem this year.[/COLOR]
    [COLOR=#444444][/COLOR]
    [URL]http://twitter.com/#!/TheJetsStream[/URL]

  5. #5
    Nicely done.

    The d-line has quickly gone from a thin unit to a group with nice depth. Could care less who starts between Mo and Pito, either way the line should be much more fresh this year.

    Very concerned about the linebackers this year. There's just not a lot of speed at the position, and the Jets might have problems with the teams that find ways to keep these guys in space.

    Overall, not much to be disappointed with last night. This team should be able to beat opponents in a variety of ways.

  6. #6
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    a lot of positive talk about Wilk and Kenrick today

    but based on what I saw, Ropati Pitoatua may just be the BEST nose tackle on this team and just might be Jenkins-quality when he starts making a name for himself

  7. #7
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    Great read. It's particularly exciting to see Sanchez doing so well with the receivers given all of the turnover. They made a great choice building a WR corps around Santonio.

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    Good read Herd. A couple of random thoughts based on your points:

    1. I liked that play by Wilson. He recognized that he had over the top help and bracketed the receiver nicely. He didn't get a finger on the ball, but if it was anywhere where the receiver could catch it, he would have. Perfect coverage (just one play, but nice nonetheless).

    2. Disagree about Mulligan. You need to have your blocking TE be able to catch a ball that hits him in the chest. Mulligan may be an improvement from Hartstock as at least he's physically able to get down the field more than 6 yards, but if you want to be active on gameday, you need to be a quasi-threat to have the ball thrown to you, at least as the 5th option. Sean Ryan was able to catch an occasional ball.

    3. I think Sanchez made it a point to look for Mason early in the game. Its still early in August, but that connection seemed to be doing OK. I think they'll be fine from the get go. Mason is one of the consummate professionals that can probably work with anyone....Plax, OTOH, may take until October to get fully up and running. He's behind the 8 ball both in camp and from the last two football-free years. But Kerley looks like he's a player, so I'm not terribly concerned right now.

    4. I was very critical of the team for keeping Cumberland on the 53 man last year (as the 4th TE) when he didn't play. Hopefully he will really contribute and prove me wrong. I liked very much what I saw of him last night. Ditto Baker, although he's clearly a long shot.

    5. Ellis showed a lot of promise and also that he has a lot of work to do. The play where he deflected the ball he got neutralized completely (pushed back actually) but showed a lot of instincts in getting his hands up.

  9. #9
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    [QUOTE=Ray Ray19;4105900]My quick take on Wilkerson. Remember he started with the first teamers, I got the sense that he was trying to adjust to the speed of the NFL game, seemed a step behind in most of what he was doing, but the talent and ability is clearly there. I think we will se a better performance from him next week with a game now under his belt.[/QUOTE]

    Absolutely. I'm not worried about Wilk, and I don't think you can overstate how much harder it is playing against 1st teamers.

  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=sg3;4105934]a lot of positive talk about Wilk and Kenrick today

    but based on what I saw, Ropati Pitoatua may just be the BEST nose tackle on this team and just might be Jenkins-quality when he starts making a name for himself[/QUOTE]

    Ropati is a DE.

    NJHERD, Great read. I also think most here are being too hard on Joe McKnight, and I think Kyle wilson is going to be a terrific 3rd CB.

  11. #11
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    I enjoyed your write up, thanks. I like the way you analyzed the performance of guys. I know so many in our community here are craving sacks from our DL and this is hard to accomplish in a 3-4. For instance, I watched on one play where Wilkerson was hit off the line and then two other blockers worked to deflect his pressure. - the guy did his job on that play. I'm also excited to see what Pitoitua can do. Where he's drawing multiple guys and clogging a passing lane he's doing his job. These guys will still break through occasionally but that's the nature of the 3-4. I like the D-line's potential to make the entire defensive unit really effective.

  12. #12
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    Thanks Crash

    [QUOTE=crasherino;4105947]Good read Herd. A couple of random thoughts based on your points:

    1. I liked that play by Wilson. He recognized that he had over the top help and bracketed the receiver nicely. He didn't get a finger on the ball, but if it was anywhere where the receiver could catch it, he would have. Perfect coverage (just one play, but nice nonetheless).

    [B]I couldn't agree more. It was a savvy play by Wilson where he showed more situational awareness than he showed all of last year. No one ever said Wilson lacked the necessary physical skills to succeed, so it’s nice to see the mental side of his game coming around.[/B]

    2. Disagree about Mulligan. You need to have your blocking TE be able to catch a ball that hits him in the chest. Mulligan may be an improvement from Hartstock as at least he's physically able to get down the field more than 6 yards, but if you want to be active on gameday, you need to be a quasi-threat to have the ball thrown to you, at least as the 5th option. Sean Ryan was able to catch an occasional ball.

    [B]I agree that it would certainly be better if Mulligan could reliably catch a perfect pass, the fact that Hartsock was active every game last season, and that Mulligan is probably a better receiver than Hartsock, tells me that it’s just not something the Jets value out of their 2nd TE. I honestly think the Jets view their blocking TE as almost interchangeable with Hunter or Turner lining up as TE, but I would like to see Mulligan show the ability to catch if only for that specific play the Jets ran last night, and will run a lot more this season[/B]

    3. I think Sanchez made it a point to look for Mason early in the game. Its still early in August, but that connection seemed to be doing OK. I think they'll be fine from the get go. Mason is one of the consummate professionals that can probably work with anyone....Plax, OTOH, may take until October to get fully up and running. He's behind the 8 ball both in camp and from the last two football-free years. But Kerley looks like he's a player, so I'm not terribly concerned right now.

    [B]I agree that Sanchez looked for Mason, but what made me happy is if you compare his looking for Mason to Sanchez’s first pre-season pass last year. In that game against the Giants, the coaching staff clearly wanted to get LT involved on the first play and Sanchez completely locked in to him and threw a pass into triple coverage which was picked. Based on last night, Sanchez seems to be understanding that you can still look for a receiver without necessarily forcing him the ball.[/B]

    4. I was very critical of the team for keeping Cumberland on the 53 man last year (as the 4th TE) when he didn't play. Hopefully he will really contribute and prove me wrong. I liked very much what I saw of him last night. Ditto Baker, although he's clearly a long shot.

    [B]I can’t see Baker making this team without an injury, but I could see Cumberland contributing to this offense. I think there’s a lot of potential for matchup problems, although I’m curious to see where he will line up if he plays with the first team.[/B]

    5. Ellis showed a lot of promise and also that he has a lot of work to do. The play where he deflected the ball he got neutralized completely (pushed back actually) but showed a lot of instincts in getting his hands up.
    [B]I agree with you about Ellis, he’s nowhere near a finished product and Pouha is definitely a better player than him right now. But when you combine Ellis’ size with his football instincts and his desire to get better (which has been reported by everyone around the team) it’s pretty easy to get excited about him as the kind of dominant nose tackle that defensive coordinators talk about when they discuss the 3-4.[/B][/QUOTE]
    Last edited by njherdfan; 08-16-2011 at 11:48 AM.

  13. #13
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    [QUOTE=njherdfan;4106000]Thanks Crash

    I agree that it would certainly be better if Mulligan could reliably catch a perfect pass, the fact that Hartsock was active every game last season, and that Mulligan is probably a better receiver than Hartsock, tells me that itís just not something the Jets value out of their 2nd TE. I honestly think the Jets view their blocking TE as almost interchangeable with Hunter or Turner lining up as TE, but I would like to see Mulligan show the ability to catch if only for that specific play the Jets ran last night, and will run a lot more this season[/QUOTE]

    WHen I think of a backup/blocking TE, I think of Matt Spaeth on the Stillers. A serviceable pass catcher, a very good blocker - a guy who can catch a ball occasionally....not asked to do it often, but can catch a ball that is thrown at him.

    The reason I think of him is when the Jets played the Stillers last year and Heath Miller was out, Spaeth became their primary TE and, although not a real pass catching threat, the dude caught a TD against us. Not a complicated route, but he ran D. Harris 7 yards to the goal line, turned around and caught the ball.

    Our blocking TEs have absolutely no ability to do what Spaeth did. Mulligan was an unknown to me in the receiving area and maybe last night was an aberration, but it was not encouraging. The Jets use a lot of 6 lineman packages, but when they do have the second TE in the game, he needs to be able to at least be a check down receiver for 5, 6 yards. Those are the important yards that keep Sanchez out of 3rd and long.

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    Right on.

    I agree about the O-Line and Mangold missing. Vlad was in a shock mode last night.

    I am really giddy about the 3 young RB's (Greene, McKnight, Powell). When each of them had their time on the field, they looked like the best athletes out there for either team. Didn't we dress 5 RB's last year, counting both FB's? I think we will again, all look to deserve it.

    I don't think that Wilson play should count for anything though. It's a better throw or better WR away from being a reception.

    The D-line is going to be fresh all year, these young guys can play.

    All the linebackers looked miserable in coverage still.

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    Good write up heard - I agree with most of it.

    [U]Without getting in specifics, I walked away with the following;[/U]

    --We suddenly appear to have some depth at D-Line. Which I love. Keep guys fresh for 4 QTs.

    --Opposite can be said for O-Line. Obviously. Start bringing guys in Tanny.

    --Besides Turner finally showing up in the NFL, didn't see alot from our backup WRs. I think we can adapt to this using some [B]2 TE formations[/B]. (you know i love it).

    --[B]Our Pass Rush[/B]; still looks anemic. Yes, it's preseason, but y'all saw what I saw. No one getting off their blocks. Time to start thinking about using guys like Muaga and McIntyre as unconventional/situational pass rushers. They gots the motors.

    --Our secondary - despite some poor play at safety - looked very sound. Revis, Cro and Wilson appear to be on lock. Love it.

  16. #16
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    Kyle Wilson surprised me. He was so bad last year I had no hope for him. He looked much better last night in limited action. I am looking forward to seeing him in the next game.

  17. #17
    [QUOTE=Joe W. Namath;4106137]Kyle Wilson surprised me. He was so bad last year I had no hope for him. He looked much better last night in limited action. I am looking forward to seeing him in the next game.[/QUOTE]

    He wasn't nearly as bad as you're making him out to be. He was actually VERY good for a rookie starting from day 1 in such a complete system.

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    [QUOTE=bitonti;4105882]great read

    and let me add John Conner is going to make Shonn Greene this year. The dude is a bulldozer of a lead blocker.[/QUOTE]

    +1 :yes::yes::yes:

    LOVED what I saw from Connor last night. He is going to be a great lead blocker for a long time for us. He sets the tempo with his physical play in the running game, add in a physical HB like Greene taking the majority of the carries behind a tough OLine and we are going to have a very physical running attack as usual.

    Always loved T-Rich and sad to see him go, but Connor will definatley hold down the FB position without a doubt for years to come, cant say enough about him!

  19. #19
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    [QUOTE=Chupa;4106157]He wasn't nearly as bad as you're making him out to be. He was actually VERY good for a rookie starting from day 1 in such a complete system.[/QUOTE]

    I agree.

    I thought Wilson showed the potential and ability to be at the very least a solid to above average #2 CB in the NFL last season in limited time.

    Yes, he struggled at times no question, but you have to look at the big picture. The Baltimore game he had solid coverage most of the time in one on one situations against expirienced NFL WRs, he just didnt get his head around quick enough to make a play on the ball but was definatley in position to. This is very understandable for a rookie CB playing in a man to man defense like ours.

    Wilsons main issue last year was the speed of the game IMO. He usually had good position and technique, just would be a second off or didnt get his head turned around in time to locate the ball before the WR was able to make a play on it.

    I am personally not worried at all about him and expect him to be a solid starter at the very least by year 3.

  20. #20
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    Superb analysis. Agreed on weakness of the safety position. The concerns about depth of the O-line might not be as important as that for safety.

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