NYP Costello: Sparano: Jets will start to run wild
NOTE: Sparano never says the thread title..That's the NYP editor or whomever..
Posted: 12:44 AM, October 12, 2012
Remember when the Jets were going to “Ground and Pound” their way past opponents?
That was the narrative throughout the offseason. The team was committing to the run under new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano.
Shonn Greene was going to have a monster year.
So far? Not so much.
The Jets are 25th in the league in rushing yards per game (83) and Greene has 217 rushing yards, 25th among qualified running backs in the NFL. The team’s average of 3.2 rushing yards per attempt is 30th in the league.
Despite the numbers, Sparano remains convinced the Jets are close to turning the running attack around.
“We’re really close,” Sparano said. “I think the players can see the film and they know how close we are to getting some of these out of there. When they start to come, I have no question they’ll start to come big and this thing will open up more.”
As with any problem on a football team, there is a search for the main culprit. Is it Greene, whose longest rush has been 14 yards? Is it the offensive line, which has slipped from the league’s elite in 2009 to a group that is not opening holes? Head coach Rex Ryan seems to feel the problems start up front.
“We’ve just got to block and open things up and get some running room,” Ryan said. “That’s the main thing. I know there’s a lot of criticism directed at Shonn specifically. ... We have to create some running room. I think that’s the big thing.”
It is hard not to assign some of the blame to Greene. He has averaged just 2.9 yards per carry, 45th in the league among backs who have averaged at least 6.25 attempts per game. The website profootballfocus.com has a statistic called “elusive rating” that rates a runner’s effectiveness beyond his blockers. Greene is dead last among the 43 running backs who have taken at least 25 percent of their team’s attempts. His rating is 2.3. By comparison, Bills running back C.J. Spiller has a 127.4 rating, the best in the league.
Greene and Cedric Benson of the Packers are the only running backs in the league who have taken at least 50 percent of their team’s snaps without a run of at least 15 yards.
Nevertheless, Ryan believes Greene can be his “bell cow.”
“Have I lost confidence in Shonn Greene?” Ryan said. “The answer is no. I think we just keep giving him the ball. He’s working extremely hard. I just think it’s just a matter of time before he starts popping. We all know once he gets rolling that it’s just something, the confidence, your whole team is lifted when your big back is running.”
There are some explanations for the Jets’ struggles. They are running a bit of a different blocking scheme under Sparano than they did under former offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer. Sparano’s system calls for more gap-scheme blocking than zone blocking, leading to some adjustments.
The Jets have also played from behind in every game except the opener with the Bills. That has led to a heavy dose of passing.
The schedule has also hurt the Jets. They have faced some of the best run-stopping teams in the NFL already in the Dolphins (No. 1), 49ers (7), Texans (9) and Steelers (11).
“There’s some merit to that,” Sparano said. “It’s what those teams do. But we want to be known as a team that can run the ball against any of them.
That’s where we want to get our group here. I won’t use that as an excuse. The bottom line is we all have to do a better job, myself included.”
This could be the week things open up more for the Jets. The Colts are 25th against the run.
“It’s a new system. We’re all working hard to get it better,” Greene said.
“We all want the running game to go well. It’s just there’s a lot that ties into that. Week after week we just have to keep working at it.”
Profootballfocus has Shonn Greene as forcing only 1 missed tackle this entire season... That's all you need to know about him. He gets the minimum, and that is all...
Let him leave this offseason... He's going to be 28 next season anyway.
It's not his game..never has been...even in college
NEGATIVES: "Lacks the agility to turn the corner or beat defenders around the outside. Loses momentum when he must immediately cut back against the grain. Not a creative ball carrier. Improved his vision and instincts as the season moved on, yet at times slow finding the open running lanes."
Instant gratification is an excercise in futility!
Damn people, I know it sucks losing @Steelers, home 49ers, home Texans, but the Jets are a work in progress with a freaking slew of injuries slowing that down.
A new system takes time.
We played a football game without both our starting wideouts & our starting TE.
I don't even think Sparano knew how bad Greene would be up to this point. Jeezus! how would you like to be the Ocoordinator & try to figure out what to do with new guys all over the place, it's not that simple.
Parcells worked the same way, I was infuriated watching Parcells early with the Jets but that's because you have to walk before you run.
Shoddy was here for 6 years, working with a helluva lot more talent on offense than Sparano is working with RIGHT NOW.
Shoddy also had some of the best Olines in Jets history!
Stay the course, let Sparano figure this out regarding the RBs, the Jets did raid the Texans practice squad for Grimes.
We can talk all about getting rid of Tanny for leaving us with this clusterf*ck that Sparanos dealing with but my god you people are crucifying a guy after 5 games, 4 vs top 10 run defenses in the league, & a make shift offensive roster that hasn't been able to practice all together EVER this season.
Give it a break!