Last week Jets Nation took a collective step back from the ledge and breathed a sigh of relief. A win against an 0-5 Miami Dolphins team quieted the hysteria. Week 7’s 27-21 victory over the then-4-1 San Diego Chargers restored a ‘super’ confidence in the New York Jets.
Looking for a signature victory and a complete game, they found it at MetLife Stadium — where they are now 4-0. Mark Sanchez was efficient. Shonn Greene showed guts and glamor. Plaxico Burress showed his worth. And the defense shutout a potent Chargers attack in the second half. And despite claims from the Chargers that they beat themselves, the Jets came up with the big play when necessary and overcame mistakes of their own.
At 4-3 with two straight victories the Jets are flying high, well higher, and feeling good going into their bye week.
PASSING OFFENSE: B+
- They’ve scaled back the offense for Sanchez, who was 0-4 on throws more than 21 yards. He overcame early obstacles — the fumble by Dustin Keller and an interception in the endzone. He found Plaxico Burress three times in the red zone and hit Santonio Holmes on a beautiful strike down field before being negated by a penalty.
- Sanchez has a new tool on his utility belt, the hard count. A timely skill, he drew the Charger defense offsides at least 4 times by my count.
- Been saying it all season: Keller (4 receptions, 53 yards) is the catalyst for the offense.
- Burress wasn’t signed to pull down 90 receptions and rack up 1,200 yards. For the 34-year-old Michigan State alum, it’s the contrary. His 4 receptions, 25 yards, 3 TD performance is exactly what Brian Schottenheimer wants out of him.
RUSHING OFFENSE: B+
- Shonn Greene (20 rush, 112 yards) easily had his best game of the season. He showed off his versatility as a runner; cut back runs, speed on the edge, superior field vision, and brute strength.
- It was his fifth 100-yard game of his career, including the postseason. Averaging 5.6 yards per carry, it might have been his best performance his regular-season career.
- With three offensive attempts, albeit gaining an unimpressive 11 yards, Joe McKnight still isn’t getting enough touches.
PASSING DEFENSE: B+
- Led by another dominating performance by Darrelle Revis, the defense stymied Philip Rivers, who completed only 50% of his passes for 179 yards.
- Aaron Maybin is making a lot of western New York citizens scratch their heads at his impressive performance this year. With one sack against the Chargers he now three sacks and three forced fumbles, three more than his career totals in Buffalo for both statistics.
- “He’s progressing a lot. [He] comes in, makes sure he’s learning and doing what he’s supposed to do. You see that he’s improving every single game. That’s all you can ask from him. He’s going out there, competing and having fun with it.” — Antonio Cromartie on Kyle Wilson, who recorded his first interception of the season.
- The mis-communication between safeties Jim Leonhard and Eric Smith on the Antonio Gates touchdown is a microcosm for their play against tight ends all season.
RUSHING DEFENSE: B+
- For the first time since Week 1 against the Cowboys, the Jets held a team under 100 yards for a game. They slowed Ryan Matthews (3 yards per carry) and limited Michael Tolbert to 53 yards and a touchdown.
SPECIAL TEAMS: B
- Nick Folk has been money this season, going 10-for-10 in field goal tries. He bested his former competition in Nick Novak, now playing with the Chargers, who had zero attempts. His 30-yarder in the fourth quarter sealed the game.
- Their second half adjustment defensively turned this game around. Credit goes to the players for execution, but more credit to the staff for changing-up their game plan and implementing a new attack.
- The Jets were called for 12 men on the field on Sunday. It’s been a reoccurring issue for this team all season. Communication between team personnel and the players needs to be better.
- Rex Ryan won the game against Norv Turner after their war of words leading up to the game. As the Jets were 0-3 against teams over .500, he took his spotlight off his team and placed it on himself..again. This is not a new tactic for Ryan, and shouldn’t have been taken as anything more than a tactic.
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