By Drew Buono
Jets Staff Writer
October 8th, 2006
Jets QB Kellen Clemens fumbles as he's sacked by Jaguars DT Montavious Stanley in the 4th quarter of the team's 0-41 loss to Jacksonville.
Jets QB Kellen Clemens fumbles as he's sacked by Jaguars DT Montavious Stanley in the 4th quarter of the team's 0-41 loss to Jacksonville.
The New York Jets are stuck in a time warp. The team doesn’t seem to have gotten over the lost to Indianapolis last week and the Jacksonville Jaguars took full advantage of it. It took the Jaguars less than eight minutes of game time to score 14 points. The Jaguars also reminded the Jets that they still don’t have a decent running game and their defense can’t stop the opponent’s rushers. Jacksonville wasted no time exploiting the Jets first quarter woes offensively and defensively. In fact, they helped to make those numbers look even worse than they already were.

The Jets gained just 1.8 yards per carry in the first quarter, turned the ball over and allowed two touchdowns in just 10 plays. The one strong area of the Jets, special teams, performed just as poorly as the rest of the team. A penalty at the beginning of the second quarter made P Ben Graham re-kick the ball from his own endzone. The punt was blocked and recovered at the four-yard line. The Jaguars quickly scored and then got the ball back on the next possession after QB Chad Pennington threw his second interception of the game. Of course like three times before, the Jaguars scored and went ahead 28-0 with over seven minutes left in the half.

Head coach Eric Mangini just couldn’t get anything from his team in the first half and was visibly unsatisfied and frustrated by his team’s performance. “I expect the team to play at a high level every week,” said Mangini after the game. Nothing went right, as the Jets couldn’t even get the right calls from the officials. Jaguars QB Byron Leftwich was sacked in the endzone by LB Eric Barton, but the officials called a helmet-to-helmet hit on Barton, that never occurred, and gave the Jaguars a first down and 15 yards.

The Jets entered the locker room with just 76 yards of total offense and only 5 first downs. Third down conversions was something Mangini was worried about all week and he was right to worry. The Jaguars completed 50 percent of their third down conversions, (3-6), while the Jets converted only 14 percent of their third down conversions, (1-7).

Pennington was averaging 12.38 yards per completion before today’s game. He finished today’s game, averaging only 7.1 yards per completion. This was arguably one of the worst games of his career, as he ended up with 71 yards on 10-17 passing and three interceptions. His third interception ended just like the previous two, with the Jaguars scoring shortly afterward. This made the score 38-0 and forced the Jets to give up the idea of a comeback and let the offense play safe for the rest of the game. Mangini said that he still believes in his quarterback “whole-heartedly” after a horrible day by the Jets QB.

Pennington though was very critical of himself. “I’m disappointed in how I played and not giving the team a chance,” said Pennington during his press conference. The one bit of humor from Pennington was that, “it only counts as one game, not two or three and we still have 11 left.”

RB Leon Washington was the one outstanding performer for the Jets. He had a great game in his homecoming to Jacksonville. He had a career high 101-yards on 23 carries, but was not allowed in the endzone, as he was just short on fourth down. Washington has proven his worth to the team the last three weeks and should expect more game time in the future, as the Jets continue to work on their ground game. Mangini could not comment on the great game of Washington, focusing more on the shutout as a responsibility that “everyone shares equally and everyone has to improve on.”

Nothing went right for the New York Jets, in a game that could prove critical as the team heads into it’s final three games before a bye week. The team must establish a run game to take pressure off of Pennington and the defense has to become more adjusted to the new 3-4 defense under Mangini. Otherwise, opponents are going to be able to run over the Jets and control time of possession and make it an upward battle for the Jets offense and Pennington in particular.


- This was the second shutout for the Jets in a calendar year, losing last year to Denver 27-0 on Nov. 20.

- The Jets have now been shutout in the first quarter 35-0 this season.

- RB Leon Washington had his first career 100-yard rushing game, finishing with 101 yards on 23 carries.

- Rookie QB Kellen Clemens saw his first appearance in a regular season game, he went 0-1 and fumbled the football to seal the shutout for Jacksonville.

- G Pete Kendall summed up the feeling in the Jets locker room, “embarrassing” was how the veteran described the mood of the Jets players.

- The Jets have now gone there last 19 first quarters without a touchdown.

- The Jets were only 3-14 on third down, compared to 6-13 for the Jaguars.

The Jets return to Hempstead tomorrow for Coach Mangini’s press conference and will be there with all the breaking stories and developments.

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