Get On The Bus Before Herm Throws You Under It

By Christopher Mayone
Jets Staff Writer
January 18th, 2005
Head Coach Herman Edwards has no one to blame but himself for Saturday's loss in Pittsburgh. (Jets Photo)
Head Coach Herman Edwards has no one to blame but himself for Saturday's loss in Pittsburgh. (Jets Photo)
PITTSBURGH, PA - The Herman Edwards “Blame Bus” has just left Pittsburgh and the Kool-Aid jug us bone dry. Back at Hofstra there’s no letter from the Commissioner inviting the Jets to this weekend's AFC Championship game against the Patriots. The bus pulled out of Heinz Field with nothing but a disappointing team and their coaches.

Actually, that’s only if you don’t count the blood stains on the bus’ tires after the Coach ripped the heart out of every Jets fan and laid it under that bus for arguably the most painful loss that this franchise has ever experienced.

Pain? Jets fans know pain.

The list of this team’s painful losses over the years is longer than Paris Hilton’s list of lovers but this one is harder to get down than your Mother In Law's cooking.

Edwards proved again he is a good coach six days a week but in game situations he is clueless.

Yeah, I know the line. Playoffs three-out-of-four years.

Big deal. After a 5-0 start, the team was lucky to make the NFL’s second season and thanks to a meltdown by Buffalo’s Drew Bledsoe, ended up backing in at the last minute. Memories of that magical win in San Diego last week during wild card weekend are long gone.

What’s fresh and what will burn in the skull of every Jets fan till August is how Herm ticked away with those precious seconds and decided to run out the clock and kick a 43-yard field goal with a kicker who had just missed from only four yards longer about two minutes prior and has been the epitome of erratic for the past month.

Wait, does someone sound like hypocrite?

What ever happened to that old speech about playing to win the game?

Fifty five seconds and two-timeouts to get closer. Instead, Edwards showed he was a fake, a fraud and scared.

It's sad. His words, which at one time defined his style of coaching and even led to a book written by him titled by that same phrase, has gone from being his motto to being a punch line.

Remember looking at the clock? It was hovering around fifty seconds and the Jets were close, but not close enough.

Instead of letting his $64 Million quarterback drop back and throw a pass to gain a few more yards or even ice the game with a TD, he just watched the time tick.

Forget about running outside with Lamont Jordan, your 230-pound running back. He’s only made a living this year breaking the opposition’s back in crunch time.

Why try a fade pattern or a down and out to Justin McCareins? That’s only why you traded for him this last off-season.

Certainly you wouldn’t want throw another screen to Curtis Martin, you only owned the Steelers with that play all day.

Forget about Wayne Chrebet. He’s only made his living making game changing catches during his decade long career.

Sorry…I forgot, Edwards did run a play. He let Chad Pennington take a knee with six seconds left to run two seconds off the clock so the kick would be the last play of the game. He also lost 2 yards with the move.

Now that’s aggressive. It’s about as aggressive as a kitten fighting off a pit bull. Do you think Bill Belichick would have 2 Lombardi trophies in his office today if he used strategy like this during crunch time in the Superbowl against the Rams and Panthers? Hell no.

Still, as Edwards likes to say, at the end of the day the Jets were in position to win the game with a long Doug Brien kick. But in that same day, he missed from 47 on a field where no opposing kicker had ever kicked that far.

The week before he missed one on the team's opening drive, then kissed his next one off the upright that barely sneaked in for 3-points. Oh yeah, he also shanked a potential game-winner against the Rams in the season finale.

Edwards' main argument is that Brien was 9-for-10 from that distance in the regular season. Guess what, Herm? This isn’t the regular season. Stevie Wonder could have seen that your kicker wasn’t going to make it.

You should have seen it too, because the same exact thing happened to your friend Marty Shottenheimer last week in much more favorable SoCal conditions.

How did that turn out?

And by the way it’s no coincidence that Marty’s mantle is missing the same Superbowl Trophy that yours is.

It seems this Coach never owns up to his mistakes. He defends his decisions to the end no matter how bad they are.

Last week the team played with 10 men on the field for two-plays in a row. Does Herm take responsibility for not having the proper personnel on the field? No. He blames rookie Derrick Strait who has been out injured most of the year for the mistake. It couldn’t be a lack of discipline by the Head Coach, could it? Furthermore, after two consecutive plays, do you think that maybe the Head Coach would notice he was a defensive back short? A position he played for over a decade himself.

As for the kneel at the end of regulation this past week, it was Santana Moss’ fault. He called time out a bit too early Herm said. Maybe if Moss called the time out 35 seconds earlier and his team took a few shots to win rather than not lose, he’d be on the bus to Foxboro this week instead of being thrown under it in the Heinz Field parking lot.

So, Herm as you are cruising down the highway of broken dreams thinking about how close you were this year, maybe you should check out the mirrors on that bus. Look into it, smile and ask how did we let that last one get away?

Quick…open them up and what do you see?

Enough said.

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